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Public service schemes urged to prepare for their scheme return

Ref: PN16-26
Wednesday 8 June 2016

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) is calling on public service pension scheme managers to prepare for and submit their annual scheme return or risk being fined for failing to comply with the law.

Later this month, TPR will issue scheme return notices to scheme managers of the UK’s 210 public service pension schemes, which provide pensions for more than 13.7 million people.

Scheme managers are required by law to provide TPR with information about their scheme by submitting a scheme return to TPR. For the first time schemes will be asked to complete a return specifically designed for the public service schemes.

TPR requires this information to assist it in maintaining the register of pension schemes and help with ongoing work to identify risk in workplace pension schemes.

Andrew Warwick-Thompson, Executive Director for Regulatory Policy, said: “The information required in this year’s scheme return is pretty basic so we don’t expect schemes to have any difficulty completing the form. Our website lists the required information so schemes can start to pull it together before they receive their scheme return notice. Completing and submitting the scheme return on or before its return date is a legal requirement, so if you’re having any difficulties, please get in touch.

“We expect one hundred percent compliance in this area and for scheme managers of all schemes to meet their legal duties. We will act where scheme managers fail to meet even the basic 'hygiene' duty of completing a scheme return.”

Scheme managers can watch TPR’s new video for advice and information about completing the return.

View the script for this video

Once they have received their return notice, schemes will have six weeks to complete and return them to TPR.

Last year 200 new public service schemes registered key information with TPR. This information has been uploaded and schemes can access and update it by registering with TPR’s online Exchange system.

Public service schemes provide benefits for local government workers, the NHS, teachers, civil servants, the armed forces, the police, firefighters, the judiciary and others.

Editor's notes

  1. TPR is the regulator of work-based pension schemes in the UK. Our statutory objectives are: to protect members’ benefits; to 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).
  2. Please feel free to upload our new video on to your online publication using the video embed code (select the share icon on the video and choose 'embed' - then copy and paste the code directly into your HTML source code).

Press contacts

David Morley 01273 662091

Tim Marks 01273 662092