Pensions UK: What's new this week - May 2021 #2

Allen & Overy LLP

Welcome to your weekly update from the Allen & Overy Pensions team, covering all the latest legal and regulatory developments in the world of occupational pensions.

This week we cover topics including: a consultation on a stronger nudge to pensions guidance; and a new industry working group on DC transfers.

  • FCA consults on nudge to guidance
  • New PASA working group on DC transfers
  • Pensions Academy Online – this week

FCA consults on nudge to guidance

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is consulting on proposals for a stronger nudge to pensions guidance by FCA-regulated pension providers. A similar obligation for occupational schemes to refer individuals to guidance will be implemented by regulations, but these have not yet been published for consultation: read about the policy proposals.

The FCA is now consulting on obligations that would apply where a person has decided, in principle, how they wish to access their pension savings, or to transfer accrued rights in order to access savings (this purpose would be assumed where a person aged 50 or over is seeking a transfer). Under the proposals, providers must: explain the nature and purpose of Pension Wise guidance and that it is free, and encourage the person to take it; explain that they may take regulated advice (at their own cost); and offer to book a guidance appointment. Providers would also need to confirm and record whether the person received Pension Wise guidance or regulated advice, or opted out.

The FCA is also seeking more general feedback on how to increase the take up of Pension Wise and to support consumers in accessing the right information and guidance.

The consultation closes on 29 June 2021. The FCA is aiming to publish its final policy statement in Q4 2021.

Read the consultation.

New PASA working group on DC transfers

PASA has launched a new working group on DC transfers, aiming to produce new guidance in early 2022. The working group’s purpose includes identifying and reducing or eliminating barriers to faster and lower-risk transfer processing, and setting out good practice standards for administrators to follow when processing DC transfers.

Read more about the working group and its priorities.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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