7 days

7 Days is a weekly round up of developments in pensions, normally published on Monday afternoons. We collate this information from key industry sources, such as the DWP, HMRC and TPR.

In this 7 Days

Finance Act 2024 receives Royal Assent

The Finance Act 2024, which removes the LTA framework from 6 April 2024, received Royal Assent on 22 February 2024. Regulations are expected in due course to address certain issues HMRC has identified in the primary legislation, including in relation to reporting requirements and the new “pension commencement excess lump sum” authorised payment.

In a newsletter published on 23 February 2024, HMRC announced that its next piece of guidance on the tax changes will be published in the next two weeks.

DWP consults on options for DB schemes

On 23 February 2024, the DWP published a consultation on options for DB schemes, following its 2023 call for evidence. The consultation proposes changes “in the interest of savers and for sustainable investment in the wider economy” to make it easier for well-funded DB schemes to extract surplus, alongside the introduction of a public sector DB scheme consolidator operated by the PPF by 2026. The consultation closes on 19 April 2024.

See our forthcoming Alert for further details.

TPR publishes blog on ESG risks and opportunities

On 21 February 2024, TPR published a blog on how trustees can manage wider ESG risks and opportunities, now that climate reporting has become part of “business as usual” for those in scope. TPR acknowledges that “ESG and related reporting is a significant challenge for trustees”, but failure to account for “climate-related risks and opportunities and, where material, nature and social factors, puts savers at risk”.

The blog outlines some actions trustees may wish to consider, including becoming early adopters of reporting in line with the Taskforce on Nature-Related Financial Disclosures (“TNFD”) recommendations.

TPR announces organisational restructure

TPR announced organisational changes to “reinforce its strategic shift in overseeing the workplace pensions market” on 22 February 2024. From April, three new regulatory functions will be created:

  • regulatory compliance, which will encompass auto-enrolment compliance and most functions currently in TPR’s Frontline Regulation directorate
  • market oversight, to include TPR’s current supervision team and communications function
  • strategy, policy and analysis.

The changes are intended to help TPR adapt to the changing pensions environment and enable it to be “swifter to address compliance failures and market-wide risks”. TPR expects to “engage differently with the market” as a result.

Pensions dashboards developments

The Order to make operating a commercial pensions dashboard service which connects to the MaPS architecture an FCA-regulated activity has been made, and will come into force on 11 March 2024.