“The trustee training was a very well-paced overview which gave opportunity to explore ideas and question more deeply at key points.”
“I wanted to look at the effectiveness of our trustee board, so Gillian, our PSGS scheme secretary, provided their trustee self-assessment tool to help me gather thoughts and opinions from others on the board. The tool was extremely easy to use and asked all the right questions to help me collect the information I needed as Trustee Chair. It is a great example of the way PSGS shares knowledge with their clients and makes dealing with key governance issues easy. As well as enabling me to meet one of the Regulator’s 21st century trusteeship requirements, using the tool has flagged trustee training needs and ways we could improve trustee meetings further. ”
“In any major corporate transaction, time is of the essence. PSGS's pragmatic commercial approach helped us manage the pensions aspects of our group re-structure to ensure a positive outcome for all parties. ”
“Ever increasing regulation has placed a heavy burden on trustees both in terms of time and the risk of non-compliance. PSGS has the experience and the resources to help trustees manage these burdens.”
“In my experience, not all professional trustees are able to cope with tricky or potentially confrontational situations. I find PSGS has massive experience in getting involved, earning the respect of others and resolving such issues. They get stuck in – they are a first rate team.”
“Ann and her team are very knowledgeable and proactive, liaise well with our other advisers and provide the Trustees with an invaluable secretarial service.”
Important new Regulations that came into force with effect from 6 April 2018 imposed new obligations on the trustees or managers of defined contribution (DC) occupational pension schemes to publish their annual Chair’s statement ‘free of charge on a publicly available website’.
This new disclosure requirement applies to ‘relevant schemes’ and within 7 months of the scheme’s first year-end falling on or after 6 April 2018. Therefore pension trustees and managers of DC occupational schemes (including DC master trusts) now need to publish their Chair’s statements on a website which can be freely accessed by scheme members and the public alike.
A key requirement is there should be no barriers such as a password to access the Chair’s statement. There are no exceptions for small DC schemes, or if you currently don’t have a scheme website – the Pensions Regulator (TPR) still expects the pension trustees or scheme managers to put the information on to the internet.
Are you compliant?
Not every DC pension scheme will have a website to enable them to do this easily. For those that don’t, complying with the regulations provides a challenge for the pension trustees and scheme managers. A breach of the regulations could lead to a fine being imposed by the Pensions Regulator. The minimum fine is £500 per breach, potentially rising to £2,000 per breach.
Help is at hand
We know pension scheme administrators and consultants are looking at solutions to help clients meet this new requirement but, as professional pension trustees, we are mindful any solution needs to represent appropriate value for money. It is likely that not all current solutions will pass this test or meet the regulations to be freely accessible.
Punter Southall Governance Services Ltd (PSGS) can help you comply with the obligation to publish the Chair’s statement online.
PSGS clients can host their Chair’s statement on our website. Each pension scheme’s page can include the company/scheme logo, as well as links to other documentation relevant to the scheme. There’s a small one-off fee, which includes ongoing hosting and minimal annual changes (like small wording changes and uploading updated documents). Easy compliance and value for money!
We’d be happy to help other pension trustees/managers who need to comply too. Why risk being fined when a cost-effective solution is available to you to comply and make your Chair’s statement freely available online?