The meaning of ‘connected’ and ‘associate’ in pensions
Produced in partnership with Wyn Derbyshire of gunnercooke LLP
The meaning of ‘connected’ and ‘associate’ in pensions

The following Pensions guidance note Produced in partnership with Wyn Derbyshire of gunnercooke LLP provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • The meaning of ‘connected’ and ‘associate’ in pensions
  • Use of terms ‘connected’ and ‘associate’ in pensions
  • Connected persons
  • Associates
  • Defined terms used in definition of ‘associate’
  • No chain principle for association purposes
  • Limited Liability Partnerships
  • Guidance from the Pensions Regulator

Use of terms ‘connected’ and ‘associate’ in pensions

Although originally defined for use under the insolvency/bankruptcy framework as set out under the Insolvency Act 1986 and underlying regulations, the concepts of 'association’ and ’connection’, together with the related concept of 'control’ have, in recent years, increasingly been adopted for use under various aspects of the UK’s pensions legislation.

Examples include:

  1. Moral hazard powers—the terms are used under the moral hazard provisions of the Pensions Act 2004 to determine the degree of remoteness of entities from the sponsoring employers of occupational pension schemes and whether such entities are potentially vulnerable to the exercise by the Pensions Regulator of his moral hazard powers, eg the issuing of financial support directions and consultation notices—for further information, see Practice Notes: Contribution notices and Financial support directionsPeA 2004, ss 38–58

  2. Employer-related investments—the terms are used under the employer-related investment legislation in relation to the ability of trustees of occupational pension schemes to enter into dealings with the schemes’ sponsoring employers or parties associated or connected with such entities. Please note, however, that the definition of ‘connected person’ in the Insolvency Act 1986, s 249 is modified in its application to the employer-related investment legislation, so that a company is not connected with another company merely because one of its directors is also a director of the other company—for further information, see Practice Note: Employer-related investmentsPA 1995, s 40SI 2005/3378

  3. Independent trustees—the terms are used to determine whether independent trustees are genuinely independentPA 1995, s 23

  4. Scheme advisers— the terms are used to ensure that no person associated