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FOI reference - FOI 2016-05-26
Date - 26/05/2016

Request

Given the recent TPR press release warning defined contribution (DC) trustees to prepare for changes to annual scheme returns or risk facing a fine due to legislation being brought in 2015 concerning charge controls and governance, I am very interested to get an accumulative figure for the total value of fines issued to trustees with regards to this and / or the total amount of warning letters issued relating to this?

Also I would like to know how may recovery plans The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has dealt with over the last year or two years with a duration of 10 years or longer?

Response

Duty to confirm or deny whether TPR holds the information requested

I can confirm that we hold the information you have requested.

Information we are able to supply

The current number of warning notices issued for the failure to submit a scheme return by the due date stands at 22. This figure is correct as of 23 May 2016.

There has been one breach of the requirement to produce an annual governance statement, signed by the chair of trustees, and we issued a fine of £500 for this breach. The legislation relating to the annual governance statement stipulates that a mandatory fine applies and we will issue a fine of between £500 and £2,000 for these breaches.

With regard to your question about recovery plans, our interpretation of your request, which you confirmed in your email sent on 19 May 2016, was that we are treating your ‘dealt with’ request as covering the recovery plan risk assessment.

Therefore the number of schemes where we dealt with a recovery plan, of at least 10 years in length, in the 12 months up to 30 April 2016 is 379.

Duty to provide advice and assistance

I am mindful of the duty to provide advice and assistance to requesters, as far as it is reasonably practicable to do so.

We are committed to being open and transparent in our activities, therefore we may publish reports under section 89 of the Pensions Act 2004 on fines issued to trustees for the failure to provide the annual governance statement. In addition to these reports we would also look to publish a press release and for your convenience I have included website links to our press release and section 89 reports pages.

We have recently issued a press release in relation to scheme funding and we are also due to publish our Orange book in June 2016 where we will have analysis relating to recovery plans. I have included website links to the recent press release and also to the previous version of the analysis on scheme funding (PDF, 383kb, 16 pages).

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