Notification requirements

Part of Pension Schemes Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:15 pm on 7 February 2017.

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Photo of Richard Harrington Richard Harrington The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 3:15, 7 February 2017

To rebut that point—I emphasised the words “resolve” and “resolution”—we believe that the majority of triggering events will end up with a very satisfactory resolution. Remember, many members do not take an active decision to join; they join through their employer. They are not actively engaged in the scheme; their employer is the conduit, so providing incomplete information to members would cause undue distress and risk unintended consequences, such as members opting out of the scheme and stopping saving in a pension, when a resolution to the triggering event could very easily be agreed with the trustees or, indeed, opposed by the regulator.

If a scheme resolves its triggering event and continues to operate, I do not see why members should see any change. It is exactly the same for them: their pension saving will not be disrupted. I would not want them to be unduly alarmed or confused. The intervention of the regulator during the triggering event period, and the additional controls that are put in place during that period, will help to ensure the scheme gets back on track.

If the scheme is going to wind up—I believe this is the relevant point—members will be informed well ahead of anything directly impacting on them, and will be given the information and options.