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TPR adds two new schemes to its master trust assurance list

Ref: PN16-13
Thursday 10 March 2016

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has added National Pensions Trust and The Pensions Trust to its list of schemes with master trust assurance.

All schemes wishing to join TPR’s list are required to demonstrate they have obtained an independent report showing whether they have met standards set out in the voluntary master trust assurance framework.

TPR will also carry out a number of checks relating to the scheme covering tax relief in member communications and other potential risks. The schemes now appear on TPR’s list of all schemes with assurance.

Andrew Warwick-Thompson, Executive Director at The Pensions Regulator said:

"I am pleased that the number of DC master trusts on our list of those with independent master trust assurance continues to grow, and I strongly encourage all master trusts to adopt the framework.

"Master trust assurance allows trustees to demonstrate their scheme has obtained an independent review of their governance standards and controls against a defined set of 'control objectives', which have been designed to align with the standards in our DC code and our DC regulatory guidance.

"We believe that large well-run master trusts which have obtained assurance, and group personal pension plans authorised by the FCA, are a good choice for employers seeking to comply with their automatic enrolment duties."

The voluntary master trust assurance framework was developed by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW) in association with TPR to support auditors to provide independent assurance reports for the trustees of master trusts.

Editor's notes

  1. Only some schemes on TPR’s list of all schemes with master trust assurance are open to all employers. To view schemes open to all employers, go to choose a pension scheme.
  2. ICAEW has published guidance on applying the assurance framework to occupational DC master trusts. The framework sets out how trustees should report against a series of 'control objectives' related to governance and administration which are aligned with the regulator's DC quality features. It also sets out the procedures that independent reporting accountants should carry out.
  3. ICAEW is a professional membership organisation that promotes, develops and supports more than 144,000 chartered accountants in 160 countries.
  4. The Pensions Regulator is the regulator of work-based pension schemes in the UK. We have objectives to: protect members’ benefits; reduce the risk of calls on the Pension Protection Fund (PPF); to promote, and to improve understanding of the good administration of work-based pension schemes; to maximise employer compliance with automatic enrolment duties; and to minimise any adverse impact on the sustainable growth of an employer (in relation to the exercise of the regulator’s functions under Part 3 of the Pensions Act 2004 only).

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