Appointing professional advisers and other pension scheme advisers
Appointing professional advisers and other pension scheme advisers

The following Pensions practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Appointing professional advisers and other pension scheme advisers
  • Scheme auditor
  • Scheme actuary
  • Fund manager
  • What investment functions are delegated to the fund manager?
  • Appointment of fund managers
  • Trustee exoneration and liability
  • Custodian
  • Legal adviser
  • Section 47 appointment of professional advisers
  • More...


Running a pension scheme can, at times, be a demanding and complex task for trustees. There is much legislation and regulation to understand and abide by, decisions to make and formalities to complete. As a result, many pension scheme trustees formally appoint a panel of professionals to assist them to run the pension scheme correctly and in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

Legislation provides for the appointment of certain advisers known as ‘professional advisers’. Professional advisers include:

  1. the scheme auditor

  2. the scheme actuary

  3. the fund manager

  4. the custodian

  5. the legal adviser

In fact, under the Pensions Act 1995 (PA 1995), schemes are legally obliged to appoint an auditor and, where defined benefits are provided, an actuary. This is explored further below.

Pension schemes may also appoint non-professional advisers to help them run the scheme, such as scheme administrators, investment consultants and fiduciary managers.

Before an adviser is formally appointed, trustees should ensure that they assess experience, expertise and cost efficiency. Many schemes invite potential advisers to complete a tender process to enable them to select and appoint the adviser. The Pensions Regulator has published guidance called Relations with Advisers, which sets out the key issues for trustees to consider when appointing advisers.

Once an adviser has been selected, a service agreement will usually be entered into between the trustees and

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