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CMS Pensions LawCast

Welcome to the Pensions podcast and video series, 'CMS Pensions LawCast'

Hosted by CMS Pensions experts, this series looks ahead to the key issues developing in the pensions sector, with a specific focus on what you need to know, and practically, what you need to do. 

Subscribe, download and listen to the CMS ‘Pensions LawCast’ podcasts here.

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Video and Podcast

Episode #42 – ESG and investing

In this episode Jae Fassam, Thibault Jeakings and Chris Ransom discuss ESG and investing.

In particular, they look at:

  • A recap on the law as it stands
  • An update from two recent cases
  • A look across to some other jurisdictions to anticipate challenges to come

Episode #41 – GMP equalisation update

In this episode Pete Coyne and Kirsty Macdonald discuss GMP equalisation and where we are now. 

In particular, they look at:

  • Brief recap on GMP equality
  • What do schemes have to work with?
  • How are schemes responding – any clear trends?
  • Dual records – common issues
  • Conversion
  • Transfers out

Video and Podcast

Episode #40 – Pension sharing on divorce

In this episode Jennifer Bell and Simon Evans are joined by Emma Nash, a family law Partner from Fletcher Day, to discuss issues that arise in connection with pension sharing on divorce. 

In particular, they look at:

  • Information that trustees can or should provide
  • How to deal with a change in the underlying scheme benefits
  • Communications and language
  • Q&A with a family lawyer

Episode #39 – DC Schemes and Master Trusts and themes arising from recent consultations

In this episode Johanna Clarke and Mukudi Nkanza are joined by Shabna Islam from Hymans Robertson to provide an update on DC Schemes and Master Trusts and themes arising from recent consultations.   

In particular, they look at:

  • Delivering the Stronger Nudge to Pensions Guidance
  • Open Consultations: Facilitating investment in illiquid assets
  • Master Trusts and illiquid assets

Episode #38 – Update on recent Pensions Ombudsman cases

In this episode Emma Frost, Victoria  Lee and Claire Bradwell provide an update on recent Pensions Ombudsman cases.  

In particular, they look at:

  • Overpayments
  • Awards for Distress and Inconvenience 
  • Transfers and Scams

Episode #37 – Update on the derisking market

In this episode James Parker is joined by Myles Pink from Lane Clark & Peacock to provide an update on the derisking market. 

In particular, they look at:

  • Recap on the derisking market
  • Themes and what to expect in the 2022 derisking market

Episode #36 – Update on the year ahead

In this episode Pete Coyne, Alex Tomlinson and Katherine Harnett provide an update on the year ahead.

In particular, they look at:

  • Scheme governance
  • Scheme structure
  • Scheme funding & member benefits

Episode #35 – New transfer requirements

In this episode Maria Rodia, Alison Guy and Shakes Seebaluck discuss the new transfer requirements.

In particular, they look at:

  • New transfer requirements – an overview
  • Due diligence requirements for Trustees and their Administrators
  • Next steps for the Trustees?

CMS have published more information on the new transfer requirements in our Trustee Transfer Guide here.

Episode #34 – Regulatory burden for small pension schemes

In this episode Jae Fassam and Katie Becher are joined by Jonathan Reynolds from Capital Cranfield to discuss the regulatory burden for small pension schemes. 

In particular, they look at:

  • Overview of regulatory burden facing small schemes
  • Question and Answers with Jonathan Reynolds

Episode #33 – Pension Schemes Act 2021 – status update and revised clearance guidance

In this episode Johanna Clarke, Alexandra Tomlinson and Kirsten Thompson discuss the Pension Schemes Act 2021. 

In particular, they look at:

  • What’s in force from 1 October 2021?
  • Further developments and expected timescales
  • Revised clearance guidance

CMS have published more information on the Pension Schemes Act 2021 here.

Episode #32 - Equality, Diversity & Inclusion #2

In this episode Keith Webster and Hadassah Shulman are joined by Sarah Horan from ITS to discuss diversity and inclusion. 

In particular, they look at:

  • Trustee selection and approach
  • Member communications 
  • Advisor roles and selection

CMS have published more information on equality, diversity and inclusion here.

Episode #31 - Pension Schemes Act 2021 - Information Sharing

In this episode Mark Grant, Mark Atkinson and Natalie Mee discuss information sharing and the Pension Schemes Act 2021.

In particular, they look at:

  • new requirements to provide information
  • what this means for trustees
  • what this means for employers

CMS have published more information on the Pension Schemes Act 2021 here.

Episode #30 - Disputes resolution processes

In this episode Neil Smith and Tim Green discuss disputes resolution. 

In particular, they look at:

  • Mediation; and
  • Arbitration

Episode #29 - Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

In this episode Laura Clarke and Hadassah Shulman discuss Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.

In particular, they look at:

  • The case for E, D & I in pension schemes
  • What does E, D & I mean?
  • What should your scheme be thinking about?
  • Next steps

CMS have published more information on equality, diversity and inclusion here.

Episode #28 – The TPR Single Code

In this episode Jae Fassam and Hadassah Shulman are joined by Louise Webb and Simon Lewis from Punter Southall Governance Services to discuss the TPR’s Single Code. 

In particular, the group looks at:

  • What is the Single Code?
  • What is new in the Single Code?
  • Thoughts and insight from the experts at PSGS

Punter Southall Governance Services have published more information on the single code here and information on diversity in pension communications here.

Episode #27 – GMP equalisation and bulk annuity transactions

In this episode Pete Coyne and India Trusselle are joined by Celia Monteiro from Legal & General to discuss GMP equalisation and bulk annuity transactions. 

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Introduction to GMP equalisation
  • Choice of methodology
  • Timing for approach to the market
  • Residual risks cover
  • Key takeaways

Episode #26 – Overpayments

In this episode Mark Jenkins, Amina Mahmood and Rebecca Carter are joined by Joanna Price from Willis Towers Watson to discuss Overpayments. 

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Legal position of overpayments 
  • Tax position of overpayments 
  • Defences to recovery of an overpayment
  • Overpayments relating to transfer values
  • The ‘insider’ view

Episode #25 – Death benefits

In this episode Alistair Hill, Chris Ransom and Doyin Olugbemiga discuss death benefits. 

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Basic principles of decision making
  • Top five tips for Trustees in discretionary death cases:
  • Identify all potential beneficiaries
  • Make reasonable enquiries
  • Properly manage potential beneficiaries’ expectations
  • Consider the Pensions Ombudsman
  • Keep adequate record of the decisions taken

Episode #24 – Pension Scams

In this episode Pete Coyne, Alexander Waters and Alexandra Bradley are joined by Mark Radley from Technology & Administration Solutions, Willis Towers Watson to discuss Pension Scams.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • New legislative provisions in the Pension Schemes Act 2021
  • Updated guidance from the Pension Scam Industry Group
  • Signing up to the Pension Regulator’s Pledge

Episode #23 – Pension Schemes Act 2021

In this episode Kate Richards, Simon Evans and Heather Lucas provide an update on the Pension Schemes Act 2021.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Introduction to the new criminal offences
  • Aim of prosecution
  • Relationship with Contribution Notices and Material Detriment test
  • Secondary liability
  • Defences
  • When to seek legal advice

Episode #22 – GMP equalisation

In this episode Maria Rodia, Kirsty Macdonald and Claire Miller provide an update on GMP equalisation.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Background to GMPs and the Lloyds judgments
  • Methodologies for GMP equality
  • Issues to consider when implementing GMP equality
  • Past transfers out

Episode #21 – ESG #2

In this episode Jae Fassam, Sharon Piert and Alex Nicklin provide an update on ESG. This is the final episode in our ESG series. 

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Trustee duties and non-financial factors
  • Risk of challenge
  • PCRIG Guidance
  • Stewardship
  • Impact of ESG on employer covenant

Episode #20 – Collective DC

In this episode Keith Webster and Thibault Jeakings are joined by Chintan Gandhi from Aon to discuss Collective Defined Contribution.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • What is collective DC?
  • Potential issues
  • Authorisation
  • The road ahead 

Episode #19 – ESG #1

In this episode Jae Fassam, Laura Houët and Tasmin Patel provide an update on ESG. This is the first episode in our ESG series. 

In particular, the group looks at: 

  • What is ESG investing, and why does it matter? 
  • Recent developments 
  • Issues for trustees: DWP Consultation “Taking action on climate risk: improving governance and reporting by occupational pension schemes”
    • Scope
    • Penalties for non-compliance 
    • Proposals 
  • Issues for asset managers: Q&A session 
  • What else is in the pipeline?  

Episode #18 – Master Trusts #3

In this episode Caroline Kurup and Chris Ransom provide an update on Master Trusts. This is the final episode in our Master Trust series. 

In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Legal developments on the horizon
  • How to address the small pots problem
  • Changes to the general levy coming to master trusts
  • Government response to the review of the default fund charge cap
  • What is best practice for a DC master trust? 

Episode #17 – Master Trusts #2

In this episode Jae Fassam and Tom Bates provide an update on Master Trusts. This is episode 2 in a 3 part series on Master Trusts. 

In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Ongoing considerations for trustees of master trusts
  • How trustee governance works in a master trust
  • The opportunities for and risks with engagement with members
  • Considerations relating to investment and the potential development of the default fund

Episode #16 – Update on the year ahead

In this episode Caroline Kurup, Johanna Clarke and Doyin Olugbemiga provide an update on the year ahead. 

In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Pension Schemes Act
  • Funding
  • Consolidator Vehicles
  • GMP Equalisation
  • Investment and Governance

Episode #15 – The Pensions Ombudsman

In this episode Mark Jenkins, Laura Clarke and Tara Rogers discuss trends they are seeing coming out of the Pensions Ombudsman. 

In particular, the group looks at: 

  • A shift in approach to resolving complaints through informal dispute resolution
  • Key trends arising out of TPO determinations
  • Pension scams.

Episode #14 – Defined Benefit Member Options and Liability Management

In this episode Pete Coyne, Laura McLaughlin and Thibault Jeakings are joined by Abigail Currie from Willis Towers Watson to discuss Defined Benefit Member Options and Liability Management.

In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Background and evolution in use of liability management exercises to increase member options
  • Specific options available - PIE, transfer exercises and small lump sums
  • What's happening in practice
  • How to maximise success

Episode #13 – Master Trusts

In this episode Keith Webster, Katie Millard and Harriet Cleal discuss Master Trusts.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • What is a Master Trust?
  • Recent developments
  • Transferring to a Master Trust

Episode #12 – Pensions Regulator Investigations

In this episode Jennifer Bell, Richard Gibson and Simon Evans discuss the investigatory powers of The Pensions Regulator. 

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Current powers
  • Future developments
  • Practical experience and tips

Episode #11 – Bulk Annuities

This is the final episode in a three-part series on pensions de-risking. In this episode Maria Rodia, Amanda Chamming's and Elaine He are joined by Uzma Nazir from the Pension Insurance Corporation to discuss Bulk Annuities.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Market updates
  • Residual risks
  • PPF v FSCS cover
  • Fixed protection. 

Episode #10 – DB Consolidators

This is the second episode in a three-part series on pensions de-risking. In this episode Caroline Kurup, Kate Richards and Amanda Chamming's discuss DB Consolidators.

In particular, the group looks at:

  • Stakeholders
  • TPR guidance for those setting up and running a DB superfund
  • TPR guidance for trustees 
  • TPR guidance for employers.

Episode #9 – Longevity Swaps

In this episode James Parker is joined by Ian Aley from Willis Towers Watson and Amy Kessler from Prudential Financial, Inc. to discuss longevity swaps. In particular, the group looks at:

  • What is longevity risk and what is a longevity swap?
  • What determines if / when schemes undertake a longevity swap or buy-in?
  • What is the legal structure of a longevity swap?
  • Market activity and factors driving activity
  • COVID-19 - Should trustees defer longevity swaps or other de-risking transactions.

Episode #8 – Litigation

In this episode Neil Smith, Tim Green and Neal Gibson are joined by Roxana Pierce from Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP to discuss pensions litigation. In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Types of pensions claims
  • Part 7
  • Part 8
  • Litigation trends
  • US perspective - class actions

Episode #7 – ESG

 In our seventh episode Dominic Harris, Laura Houët and Thibault Jeakings discuss ESG aspects of pensions investment. In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Non-financial factors
  • What's in the pipeline?
  • Disclosure Regulation

Episode #6 – Corporate Insolvency & Governance Act

 In our sixth episode Mark Jenkins, Glen Flannery and Katherine Sidders discuss the Corporate Insolvency & Governance Act. In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Moratorium
  • Super-priority
  • Restructuring plan
  • Implications for DB Schemes

Episode #5 – Pension Schemes Bill

 In our fifth episode Dominic Harris, Victoria Mance and Simon Evans discuss the Pension Schemes Bill. In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Criminal offences
  • 'The paper trail' and protecting yourself
  • Scheme funding and investment

Episode #4 – RPI reform

In our fourth episode Keith Webster, Alex Tomlinson and Kate Freeman discuss RPI reform. In particular, the group looks at: 

  • Recent cases and implications
  • Consultation on proposed changes
  • Impact of the reform and what trustees should consider

Episode #3 – Pension transfers

In our third episode Pete Coyne, Amanda Chamming's and Alex Nicklin discuss issues related to pension transfers from occupational pension schemes. In particular we look at: 

  • The impact of Covid-19
  • Issues for DB and DC schemes 
  • Scams

Episode #2 – Governance and agile decision making

In our second episode Kate Richards, Emma Frost and Tasmin Patel discuss governance and agile decision making in current circumstances. In particular we look at: 

  • Trustee decision-making in lockdown 
  • Executing documents in lockdown

Episode #1 – Reducing Contributions

In our first episode Mark Grant, Johanna Clarke, Laura Clarke and Kayleigh Garforth discuss deferring contributions to DB and DC schemes. In particular we look at: 

  • What is ordinarily required?
  • Deferring DB Contributions
  • Deferring DC Contributions

Podcast

Episode #42 - ESG and investing

Episode #41 - GMP equalisation update

Episode #40 - Pension sharing on divorce

Episode #39 – DC Schemes and Master Trusts and themes arising from recent consultations

Episode #38 - Update on recent Pensions Ombudsman cases

Episode #37 - Update on the derisking market

Episode #36 - Update on the year ahead

Episode #35 – New transfer requirements

Episode #34 – Regulatory burden for small pension schemes

Episode #33 – Pension Schemes Act 2021 – status update and revised clearance guidance

Episode #32 - Equality, Diversity & Inclusion #2

Episode #31 - Pension Schemes Act 2021 - Information Sharing

Episode #30 - Disputes resolution processes

Episode #29 - Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Episode #28 - The TPR Single Code

Episode #27 - GMP equalisation and bulk annuity transactions

Episode #26 – Overpayments

Episode #25 – Death benefits

Episode #24 - Pension Scams

Episode #23 - Pension Schemes Act 2021

Episode #22 - GMP equalisation

Episode #21 - ESG #2

Episode #20 - Collective DC 

Episode #19 - ESG #1

Episode #18 - Master Trusts #3

Episode #17 - Master Trusts #2

Episode #16 - Update on the year ahead

Episode #15 - The Pensions Obmudsman

Episode #14 - Defined Benefit Member Options and Liability Management

Episode #13 - Master Trusts

Episode #12 - Pensions Regulator Investigations

Episode #11 - Bulk Annuities

Episode #10 - DB Consolidators

Episode #9 - Longevity Swaps

Episode #8 - Litigation

Episode #7 - ESG

Episode #6 - Corporate Insolvency & Governance Act

Episode #5 - Pension Schemes Bill

Episode #4 - RPI reform

Episode #3 - Pension transfers

Episode #2 – Governance and agile decision making

Episode #1 – Reducing Contributions

Contacts

Portrait of Mark Grant
Mark Grant
Partner
London