PA Autumn Conference: PPF 2022/23 levy consultation to be published 'shortly'

The Pension Protection Fund (PPF) is planning to launch a consultation on its 2022/23 levy rules “shortly”, according to its chief finance officer, Lisa McCrory.

Speaking at the Pensions Age Autumn Conference 2021, McCrory, stated: “We will shortly be consulting on the rules for next year's levy, and as always, we would really welcome feedback on that.

“We really do listen to what you say, and we have made it easier than ever to submit your responses. There's an electronic form that makes it quicker online as well.”

She also confirmed that the lifeboat is currently in the process of agreeing a loan with the Treasury in order to pay claims on the Fraud Compensation Fund (FCF), after the High Court ruled last year that the PPF could pay compensation to scam victims, in what was the “first step” in securing compensation for pension liberation scam victims.

McCrory said: “We've already had some claims that have been submitted and we're working with the trustees to process them as quickly as we can. We had some feedback that it was quite difficult to find information on this fund on our website so it now has its own dedicated site.

“We have received estimates that there are more claims to come, and that could potentially be up to £350m.

“If you looked at last year's reporting accounts, you'll see the assets of the fund currently sit at around £20m, and so to ensure that we have the money that we need to settle those claims, we're in the process of agreeing a loan from Treasury, and that bill is currently working its way through parliament.”

In addition to this, McCrory confirmed that the PPF is “currently working through” plans to implement the Court of Appeal’s recent ruling , which upheld the lifeboat's implementation of the Hampshire uplift as legal, stating that “until that’s done members will continue to receive the benefits that they currently are”.

More broadly, she noted that there are some reasons to be optimistic, such as improvements in scheme funding and a lower level of claims in the past couple of years.

“However, the situations we find ourselves in today are very certain and it's very difficult even with the data that we have in the past, to know what's going to happen in the future," she clarified.

“There are many schemes that still are very underfunded and even the schemes that are underfunded, there's quite a range of funding levels in there too. And there are potentially some very large deficits over there.

“It's very uncertain what's going to happen in the next year with regards to claims experience, and that may remain for many years. However, we're confident that we've got the reserves in place to cope with whatever comes next."

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