Work and Pensions Committee launches inquiry into DB white paper

The Work and Pensions Committee has launched an inquiry into the defined benefit white paper to “inform and influence” the planned consultation on the white paper’s various proposals.

The DB white paper, Providing defined benefit pension schemes, which was published on 19 March 2018, announced plans to strengthen The Pensions Regulator’s main anti-avoidance powers by permitting the issuance of punitive fines extending the regulator’s investigative and information-gathering powers. The paper also plans to make it a criminal offence to wilfully neglect pension duties.

While the details of these proposals have not been wholly decided, the white paper has confirmed that there will be a series of consultations “during the rest of 2018 and into 2019”. As a result of parliamentary obligations and time, any legislation to implement the white paper’s proposals are likely to be considered in the “2019-20 parliamentary session at the earliest,” it has said.

Therefore, the Work and Pensions Committee has requested evidence and responses from all interested parties on TPR’s powers, corporate transactions that could affect pension schemes, the impact of criminalising wilful pension neglect, the consolidation of DB schemes, among others.

The deadline for written submissions is Friday 18 May 2018.

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