Back in May I posted some cynical comments on this blog about NEST’s Golden Rules for talking to workers about pensions (and, in particular, about the frankly bizarre comparison drawn between those rules and a group of ageing rockers – see ‘Nest, Pensions and the Traveling Wilburys‘). Apologies everyone: it seems that those rules will be with us for some time to come.
Archive for the ‘Communications’ Category
Here’s the situation: a pension scheme member, considering retirement or redundancy options, asks for a benefit quote. Unfortunately, there’s a substantial error in the quote, but no-one spots it and the member takes their life-changing decision. When the mistake comes to light, does the member bear any responsibility for having failed to spot it? (more…)
The duty to auto-enrol workers into pension saving draws ever closer. All employers face the challenge of explaining the new regime to their workforce in the run-up to their staging date, so that workers can understand the flurry of information that arrives around their auto-enrolment date. Keen to help, NEST has published a set of ‘Golden Rules‘ for talking to members about pensions and auto-enrolment. (more…)
I recently gave an Allen & Overy client seminar about avoiding some of the most common causes of pensions disputes. One of the causes of pensions litigation that I identified was mistakes in scheme documentation: the parties intended the document to say X but it actually says Y. I suggested a few practical points for trying to avoid these mistakes arising in the first place. One of those points focused on the value of giving clear instructions to advisers when instructing them to amend the scheme documentation. It was a point that seems to have been well received and so I thought it was worth covering it again in brief in this blog.
It sounded like a simple enough idea in principle: the new, lower, annual allowance for pension saving could lead to hefty tax charges for some members – substantially in excess of their actual income for the year – relating to increases in pension benefits which won’t translate into cash in hand for years or possibly decades to come. Some members might not be able to pay that tax bill, so the neat solution devised by the Treasury was to allow members to require their pension scheme to meet the annual allowance tax charge instead of paying it personally, with a corresponding deduction from pension – the facility known as ‘scheme pays’. (more…)