The main pension trade bodies have joined the cross-industry group on improving transfers and re-registration, reflecting the needs of today’s modern employee who moves through a number of employers and products.
The Pensions Administration Standards Association (PASA), the Pension and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) and the Society of Pension Professionals (SPP) are joining the following industry associations in contributing to this initiative:
- The Association of British Insurers (ABI)
- The Association of Member Directed Pension Schemes (AMPS)
- The British Bankers’ Association (BBA)
- The Investment Association (IA)
- Personal Investment Management & Financial Advice Association (PIMFA)
- The Tax Incentivised Savings Association (TISA)
- The UK Platform Group (UKPG)
The move follows the stakeholder session in December regarding the unique challenges facing occupational schemes in relation to transfers and the PASA, PLSA, and SPP were invited to become involved. At the same the group had published a consultation paper outlining proposals to improve the process of transferring pension and investment assets. Some 44 responses to the consultation paper were received from various stakeholders across the retail investment and pensions industry.
The enlarged group is now analysing the submissions, and will engage ongoing discussion with Government and Regulatory stakeholders regarding the next steps. It will help develop a governance framework for the introduction of standard transfer times across a spectrum of financial transfers.
Chair of the Group, Tom McPhail, Head of Policy at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The average worker in the UK now has 11 employers during their working life. This means they may be transferring a number of times between different products, or consolidating from a number of different types of products. They are also increasingly likely to want to manage their own savings and investments up to and beyond their retirement. For this reason, it is essential this important industry initiative includes occupational pensions, whilst recognising the different concerns and legal requirements facing trustees and administrators. The participation of this broad coalition of industry trade bodies and groups is a reflection of the importance and value of this work.”
Tim Gosling, Defined Contribution Policy Lead at the Pension and Lifetime Savings Association said: “The vast majority of people no longer have a ‘job for life’ so it is vital that the industry evolves to help them deal with using a variety of different pots and assets to fund their retirement. We are therefore delighted to join this important cross-industry Group which is focused on improving transfers and re-registration. This Group puts good consumer outcomes at the heart of its discussions as it focuses on ensuring that people can safely access the assets they have worked a lifetime to build.”
Peter Dyer, director of PASA, said: “I was very pleased to be asked to represent PASA for this industry initiative to set standards and improve the experience of pension scheme members in relation to transfer payments.”
John Mortimer, Company Secretary at the Society of Pension Professionals, said: “We are pleased to be joining this initiative aimed at exploring ways to improve the transfer process for members of pension schemes.”
Yvonne Braun, ABI Director of Policy, Long Term Savings and Protection, said: “This initiative is a positive example of the wider industry collaborating to make things better for consumers. The involvement of PASA, PLSA and SPP is crucial to ensuring the proposed next steps are practical and deliverable for the whole sector.”