Corporate transactions and restructurings involving DB schemes—pension issues for the trustees
Corporate transactions and restructurings involving DB schemes—pension issues for the trustees

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

  • Corporate transactions and restructurings involving DB schemes—pension issues for the trustees
  • Preliminary considerations for the trustees
  • Type of scheme subject to the transaction
  • Structure of the transaction
  • Who are the potential buyers in the transaction?
  • Conflicts of interest among the trustees
  • Trustees' right to receive information from the employer on the transaction
  • Takeover Code for listed companies—trustees have a right to certain information and to comment
  • Trustees acting like bankers in respect of the scheme and the extent to which trustees should act in the employer's best interests
  • The trustees’ powers and whether they should use them
  • More...

FORTHCOMING DEVELOPMENT: On 11 February 2019 the DWP published its response to the consultation ‘Protecting Defined Benefit Pension Schemes—A Stronger Pensions Regulator’ which followed the government’s White Paper ‘Protection Defined Benefit Pension Schemes’ (19 March 2018). The response set out the measures to be adopted to strengthen the powers of the Pensions Regulator (TPR). After a first failed attempt to legislate on these measures (through the Pension Schemes Bill 2019), the Pension Schemes Bill 2020 was reintroduced in Parliament on 7 January 2020. This 2020 Bill (which differs from its 2019 predecessor only in minor ways) aims to carry forward most of the proposals outlined in the response. This includes introducing criminal offences targeting certain behaviour in respect of DB schemes (namely the offence of avoidance of employer debt and the offence of conduct risking accrued scheme benefits), making changes to the contribution notice regime and notifiable events regime (including by requiring corporate planners to make a declaration of intent in respect of certain corporate transactions), broadening TPR’s information gathering powers and extending TPR’s powers to impose civil penalties. The detail of some of these changes is to be set out in secondary legislation. Furthermore, the intention is for TPR to update its policies and guidance (including its clearance guidance) in the light of the changes being made.

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