Category Archives: Policy

The Pensions Regulator’s statement – taking things too far

Towards the end of April the Pensions Regulator (tPR) released its first annual statement on the funding of pension schemes. Despite its reporting in the press, I can’t see how this gives any additional slack to employers. However, it does provide perhaps the clearest steer yet on how the Pensions Regulator expects The Occupational Pension […]

Fair and Sustainable Public Sector Pensions

Ahead of the planned strikes on Wednesday I thought I’d post a few thoughts on public sector pensions. I think of myself as being one of the few people that aren’t firmly on one side of the argument on this. I’m a taxpayer on one hand but defender of defined benefit pensions on the other. […]

First Briefing – Resticting Pension Tax Relief

Introduction In the “Restricting Pensions Tax Relief, Oct 2010” Briefing we covered the Government’s proposals for changes to the pension tax regime insofar as they were known at that stage. Legislation has now been enacted to effect those changes and this Briefing provides an update on the position and focuses on some of the finer […]

First Briefing – Green Paper: A state pension for the 21st century

Introduction The Government has launched a Green Paper to consult on possible reforms to state pensions. The Government is looking at options for delivering “a simpler and fairer state pension which rewards those who do the right thing and save for their retirement and is sustainable for future generations”. In particular, the Government is consulting […]

Guaranteed Minimum Price-tags (GMPs)

We’ve recently had the 21st anniversary of one of the most profound judgements in pensions, the Barber ruling. This was the judgement that meant that from 17 May 1990 pension benefits accruing for men and women had to be equal; the main impact being on retirement ages. Up until this point most schemes operated on […]

First Briefing – Public service pensions: Huttons Final Report and the Government’s response

Background – key recommendations Lord Hutton of Furness, chair of the Independent Public Service Pensions Commission (“the Commission”), published his Final Report on 10 March 2011, in which he set out his 27 recommendations to the Government on reform to public service pension arrangements. The main recommendation was that existing final salary public service pension […]

F1rst briefing, RPI to CPI

In July, we wrote about the Government’s plans to change the inflation basis used for setting statutory minimum increases to occupational pensions from the Retail Prices Index (“RPI”) to the Consumer Prices Index (“CPI”). In that briefing we said that the Government’s proposal had raised a number of questions, some of which could not be […]

Mark-to-Market, 24th November debate

A fantastic debate was held last night with the motion: “This house believes that mark-to-market accounting is inappropriate for pension liabilities and should be abolished.” My piece from the debate is reproduced below: “I was sitting in Subway at the weekend thinking about what I might say today, staring at my “foot long” sandwich – […]

F1rst briefing – Disclosure of Information

The long awaited Occupational, Personal and Stakeholder Pension Schemes (Disclosure of Information) (Amendment) Regulations 2010 (“the Regulations”) have finally been laid before Parliament. The Regulations will come into force on 1 December 2010. These Regulations have been subject to two public consultation exercises and it is clear that the Government has heeded the comments and […]

F1rst briefing – Restricting Pensions Tax Relief

Introduction Last year, we wrote a Briefing covering the anti-forestalling measures introduced by the last Government ahead of the proposed changes to the taxation of pension savings due to be introduced in April 2011. The new Coalition Government has scrapped these somewhat complicated proposals and has announced the changes that it intends to make to […]