Occupational pension schemes and money purchase benefits: government consultation

By Suzanne Burrell

The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) has issued draft regulations for consultation. This follows the change in the statutory definition of money purchase benefits, due to come into force next year.

Following the decision in Bridge Trustees v Holdsworth, the DWP announced that it would amend the definition of money purchase benefits so that only benefits calculated solely by reference to the assets available would be classified as money purchase benefits, meaning that aspects of pensions legislation such as scheme funding, PPF coverage and the statutory priority order on winding up would apply to benefits traditionally classified as money purchase benefits.

In the Bridge Trustees case, the Supreme Court held that benefits paid from a money purchase scheme still constituted money purchase benefits even when the pension was paid directly from the scheme and therefore a deficit could potentially arise from payment of those benefits…

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