Posts by Ian

Ian Craig

It should come as little surprise that, given 2016 has been one of the most volatile in recent years, the amount of completed buyouts in the first half of 2016 is almost half that of 2015’s corresponding period.

The perceived fall in demand is, however, based on somewhat skewed figures as many insurers brought forward transactions to the tail end of 2015 ahead of the Solvency II requirements kicking in from January.  Solvency II is, of course, EU legislation aimed at harmonising the insurance regimes of its member states.  The trigger of Article 50 will be the trigger for those blogs… Read more »

Ian Craig

On Tuesday, we held our final Future Influencers event of the year in our new offices, just off Liverpool Street in London. The event itself is approaching its second anniversary and there was a mix of familiar faces plus those attending for the first time. Despite the Monopoly-themed surroundings, there was no domination of a single entity and we were instead treated to three highly insightful presentations on current pension topics over breakfast.

The Future Influencer events, for those who are unfamiliar with them, aims to bring together up-and-comers within the pensions industry, from a wide range of professions: legal, actuarial, trustees and administration, to name a few. By building networks and sharing insights around our various roles, our hope is that this will lead to more innovative service delivery within the industry. So, without further ado, let’s look at what we discussed: Read more »

Ian Craig

The Pensions Ombudsman appears to have adopted a pragmatic and flexible approach in dismissing case PO-5688 regarding delayed settlement of a transfer value payment..

Mr David Brackley, a member of the Travel Automations Systems Retirement Benefits Scheme, complained that Capita (then Bluefin), the Scheme’s administrators, unreasonably delayed the provision of a transfer quotation and the subsequent processing of his request to transfer. While The Occupational Pension Schemes (Transfer Values) (Amendment) Regulations 2008 (SI 2008/1050) may not be this year’s stocking-filler, it offers the statutory timescales to complete a transfer value payment. To recap, trustees must provide the cash equivalent transfer value within three months, and then the member has three months (from a guarantee date) in which to accept. The member is then required to confirm acceptance in writing and the transfer value must be paid within six months of the guarantee date. Read more »

Ian Craig

Five years is a long time in anyone’s book and, as a rule of thumb, it either calls for celebration or a period of reflection.  In the case of the Pension Regulator’s Detailed Guidance on Record Keeping, published in June 2010, I would suggest the latter.

The parameters were clear: trustees were to ensure that by December 2012, 100% of members had a full set of common data for entries post June 2010, with the standard set at 95% of members for pre June 2010 entries.  Behind that, the conditional data – data conditional on a number of factors, such as scheme design, a member’s status in the scheme and their respective individual events – was given a more ambiguous target.  The emphasis was on trustees to be aware of their conditional data but not necessarily to have taken steps in rectifying any issues. Read more »

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