Scheme Returns 2018/19

Trustees Agenda posted on 13 December, 2018

The Pensions Regulator has circulated a message to pensions schemes in advance of the Scheme Return submissions required by the end of March.

The regulator has advised of a number of changes to the Scheme Return for this year, including questions on scheme investments, restrictions on exit charges and scheme membership. There have also been some changes to the information required in respect of s179 valuation guidance and assumptions, as required by the PPF (the Regulator has also noted that the PPF have made changes to their Voluntary Contingent Asset and Deficit Reduction Certificates). Finally, there have been some changes to the responses that can be given in the transfer of members benefits section. The Regulator advises that full details of these changes can be found on the checklist held on their website.

In preparation for submitting your return on time, the Regulator advises that trustees familiarise themselves with the changes noted above and begin gathering the information required to complete the Return. Trustees should also ensure that their login details on Exchange are up to date so that there are no issues trying to access the website when the time comes to submit. A sample Scheme Return is available on the Regulator's website.

Finally, the Regulator is reminding all trustees that it is their legal responsibility to complete a Scheme return for every scheme which they run (unless the number of members falls below two or the scheme has been wound up). If a Scheme Return has not been completed and submitted by the deadline stated in the Scheme Return notice, this is a breach of the Pensions Act 2004 and the trustees risk being fined by the Regulator.