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My pensions priorities: what actions should be at the top of your end of year to-do list?

Stephen Richards

The nights are drawing in, the Christmas adverts are well underway, and we have 35 working days remaining in 2015. Here are my suggested priorities for pension schemes before the turn of the year: Read the rest of this entry »

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Class actions in the UK – a new regime?

Jason Shaw

There has been a lot of talk recently about the introduction of U.S.-style class actions into the UK. The discussion stems from the class action regime introduced by the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (the CRA). However, the CRA only applies to collective proceedings in the Competition Appeal Tribunal for breaches of competition law – it doesn’t have a wider reach than that. While the CRA may not herald the introduction of a general U.S.-style approach to class actions, class actions remain an important issue for trustees and it is quite likely that trustees have considered, or will in the future need to consider, whether or not to participate in a class action. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Chancellor who came to TEE: is pensions tax just a matter of timing?

Helen Powell

An ISA-style system of pensions taxation, as suggested by the Chancellor in his Summer Budget yesterday, is conceptually quite straightforward. Currently the UK Government provides tax relief (subject to the annual allowance) on pension contributions as they are made, exempts investment roll-up during the accumulation phase and taxes the end product (known as an Exempt, Exempt, Taxed system or EET). It would be entirely possible to turn that around and require pension contributions to be made from taxed income, continue to allow tax-free investment roll-up and make pensions and lump sum payments tax-free (a TEE system). Read the rest of this entry »

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Ghosts of pension practices past

Joan Whybray

In pensions more than other industries, the past is not dead; in fact, it is not even really past! This is a point which haunts administrators and trustees in a number of guises on a day to day basis. For example, older schemes will be familiar with the problem of locating previous rules, which usually govern the benefits of members who left while such rules were in effect. If you can’t locate these rules, how do you establish the correct benefits for those members? The same problem arises in respect of old member communications and booklets. How can you know what members have been promised if you can’t locate the right documents? Read the rest of this entry »

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Farewell to Steve Webb

Däna Burstow

Whatever I might feel about the outcome of the election, of one thing I am sure – that the pensions industry is a poorer place without Steve Webb as pensions minister. He really rolled up his sleeves to get to tackle the issues we face and listened with open ears.  Read the rest of this entry »

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