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TPR offers 'how to' guides for trustees to support new DC code

Ref: PN16-17
Wednesday 13 April 2016

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has today launched for consultation a series of 'how to' guides to help trustees implement its revised defined contribution (DC) code.

The guides have been designed to support the new shorter code and explain to trustees how they can demonstrate compliance with the law.

The code sets out what TPR regards as the 'basic hygiene duties' of a scheme to remain compliant, including key areas such as scheme returns and the chair’s statement.

The consultation on the guides will run until 11 May 2016.

Andrew Warwick Thompson, Executive Director of regulatory policy at TPR explains: "While the code sets out the standards we expect trustees to meet when complying with the law, the guides provide information on how they can meet those standards in practice.

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"By taking an educate and enable approach, we aim to drive up standards on basic duties, such as scheme returns, which some schemes are not meeting but which are extremely important. Ultimately, failure to meet these duties will result in trustees being fined.

"The guides also give helpful best practice examples to show how scheme trustees can meet their duties. I welcome the engagement we have had so far and encourage trustees to respond to the consultation so we can make the guides as useful and relevant as possible."

The six new guides reflect the key areas of the code: the trustee board, scheme management skills, administration, investment governance, value for members, and communicating and reporting.

The code and guides are expected to come into force in July this year.

Editor's notes

  1. In November 2015, TPR published for consultation a new draft DC code of practice. The consultation closed in January 2016.
  2. Recent legislation, including the Occupational Pension Schemes (Charges and Governance) Regulations 2015, comprises new legal requirements for certain schemes which came into force from April 2015.
  3. TPR is tasked with regulating compliance with the new requirements, as well as those that existed previously, for occupational trust-based schemes offering some form of money purchase benefits.
  4. TPR 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).

Press contacts

Tim Marks 01273 662092