TPR to consolidate codes of practice

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) is planning to consolidate its 15 current codes of practice to form a single, shorter code.

It is simplifying the code as part of its ‘clearer, quicker, tougher’ campaign and in response to new requirements for scheme governance, the Occupational Pension Schemes (Governance) (Amendment) Regulations 2018.

TPR hopes that the changes will help in setting the industry clear and consistent expectations.

The regulator is aiming to make its codes of practice quicker to find, use and update, in the hope that scheme trustees and managers can be more responsive to changes in regulation.

Early focus will be on the codes that are most affected by the new regulations, starting with internal controls and the defined contribution code, including public service schemes and master trusts.

Under the updated code, trustees will need to be able to demonstrate that they have an effective system of governance within 12 months of its publication.

The regulator has said that it will engage with stakeholders for feedback on the proposed design and content, then launch a formal consultation later in the year.

Commenting on the statement, Dalraida Trustees professional trustee, Vassos Vassou, said: “We welcome TPR’s attempt to simplify the codes of practice, from a trustee’s perspective this will help bring all of the necessary pieces of guidance into one place.

“This means that we can provide good governance for schemes using one bible rather than having to cross reference many different sources.

“The one challenge the regulator will have is converting all of the existing codes in a manageable and coherent way that is robust enough for trustees to use in practice.”

The new requirements for pension scheme governance came into force on 13 January 2019 as part of the transcription of the IORP II Directive into UK law.

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