Skip to main content

Your browser is out of date, and unable to use many of the features of this website

Please upgrade your browser.


This website requires cookies. Your browser currently has cookies disabled.

Board meeting summary September 2020

A summary of The Pensions Regulator (TPR) Board meeting in September 2020.

Apologies and welcomes

The Chairman welcomed all those attending including the Chief Technology Officer of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) on behalf of the CEO. Apologies had been received from Katie Kapernaros who had sent comments and questions to the Chair.

Declarations of conflicts of interest

The Board was provided in advance with notice of case discussions and two members declared conflicts. They did not receive the paper and it was agreed that they would recuse themselves from the discussion.

There were no further declarations of conflicts of interests.

The Chair’s update

The Determinations Panel (DP) process to recruit a Chair is progressing well. An encouragingly high number of applications have been received in response to the DP membership recruitment round. The TPR Chair recruitment is also progressing.

CEO’s report

In September 2020, Winchester Crown Court ordered Patrick McLarry to pay over £250k to the pension scheme he defrauded or face an additional three years in jail. It is the first time the Proceeds of Crime Act has been used by TPR. The CEO thanked the team for their work.

A potentially record number of responses is anticipated in response to the Defined Benefits Funding Code Consultation, for which there has been significant coverage in the trade press.

The CEO attended a Regulatory Initiatives Grid and Forum in early September where TPR was asked to formally join the Forum and contribute to the grid, which was noted as a positive development in terms of joint working with the regulatory partners. On 1 September 2020, easements for Automatic Enrolment were removed and bulk enforcements were reinstated, though the easement on late payment reporting will be removed from 1 January 2021. Other easements will be lifted throughout September using a bespoke approach.

A very limited number of staff (approximately 20-30) will return to Napier House from 5 October 2020 on a trial basis. There has been significant preparation and planning to make the reopening safe and controlled.

Case updates

The Executive Director of Frontline Regulation, supported by the Directors of Enforcement and Supervision, briefed members on some major cases.

Quarterly performance report including Forecast / KPIs / MI

The paper for the item, covering the period April to June, was taken as read and members were updated on key highlights and were informed that 10 out of 11 of the key performance indicators are reporting ‘green’ and staff engagement is ‘amber’.

Spending review

TPR submitted the Spending Review funding bid to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to secure TPR funds from 2021 / 2022 to 2023 / 2024 in line with the timescales set by DWP and HM Treasury.

Corporate strategy update

In March 2020, in response to Covid-19, work on the Strategy was suspended. A strategy Board working group met in August and reviewed a range of economic scenarios against the revised draft strategy.

The strategy working group is supportive of the revised strategy.

Diversity networks update

The Board was briefed on the growing work of the five staff networks: the Women’s Network; the Proud Network; Time to Change; the Minority Ethnic Network; and the Disability Network. Members were updated on the purpose, successes and key highlights for each network for which all work is carried out by volunteers, mostly over and above normal work hours. The networks would like to do more externally and internally, but availability of time, clear processes and budget are limiters. The paper sought to facilitate future Board involvement in the networks.

The CEO thanked the authors and emphasised how important the staff networks are to TPR. On behalf of the Board, the Chair thanked the staff networks for the presentation and the essential work they are doing across the organisation.