29th June 2018 Vikki Massarano comments in Accountancy Daily on the Government’s consultation on protecting DB schemes

The government has launched a consultation into how defined benefit pension schemes can be better protected.

The consultation will look at strengthening the Regulator’s and trustees’ role in scrutinising corporate transactions; strengthening the sanctions regime to deter wrongdoing in most cases; and strengthening the regulator’s existing powers to issue contribution notices and financial support direction.

Vikki Massarano, welcomes the process:

“The consultation puts some more flesh on the bones of the proposals in the recent White Paper, particularly about changes to the Notifiable Events Framework, higher civil penalties and new criminal sanctions,” she said but added that it would not help prevent another Carillion-like pension scandal as the regulator already had adequate powers but had failed to exercise them.

“It’s hard to see that there would have been a different outcome in the case of Carillion even with these new powers in place. The Regulator had both its “moral hazard” powers and powers in relation to scheme funding at the relevant times which it did not exercise. Rather than more powers, perhaps a change in approach to exercising powers would have made more difference,’ she said.

Read Vikki’s comments in Accountancy Daily  

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