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Pensions disputes

Sunday, 25 August 2019

The successful resolution of pensions disputes requires expertise in the complex technical rules which apply to pension schemes, a deep understanding of how schemes operate in practice and specialist litigation expertise and experience.


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Head of Pensions

Daniel Gerring

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+44 (0)20 7295 3341

Daniel is Head of Pensions at Travers Smith. He advises on all aspects of pensions law, acting for trustees and employers as well as parties to corporate activity.

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Our dedicated pensions dispute resolution group leads tailored teams that draw on our full service capabilities, led by our pensions and dispute resolutions lawyers, to help clients achieve their objectives as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.  Our lawyers have acted on some of the industry's best-known contentious matters, including Lehman, Maxwell, Coloroll, Bradstock, KPMG v Aon, ITN v Ward and Stena Line v MNRPF.

We regularly assist clients in connection with regulatory actions initiated by the Pensions Regulator and act for trustees, employers and representative beneficiaries in connection with applications for court directions or declarations in relation to pension scheme documents.  We also act in connection with a variety of disputes with a pensions aspect, including professional negligence claims against administrators and other advisers, and disputes in relation to pension fund investments.  All our pensions specialists are experienced in advising trustees and employers in connection with complaints brought by members under scheme internal dispute resolution procedures or to the Pensions Ombudsman.

"They offer an excellent service and a very personable and helpful team."

Chambers, 2016

Work Examples

  • Representing Stena Line Limited in proceedings in the High Court and the Court of Appeal which brought about new funding arrangements for the industry-wide Merchant Navy Ratings Pension Fund, requiring former employers to pay deficit contributions and reducing the burden for our client.
  • Acting for the employer and trustees of a scheme in a claim for professional negligence arising out of the drafting of a deed of amendment relating to post-Barber equalisation.
  • Acting for the trustees of the Lehman Brothers Pension Scheme in relation to regulatory and court actions (including before the Supreme Court) to establish the status in insolvency of liabilities arising from the exercise by the Pensions Regulator of its financial support direction and contribution notice powers.  We also represented the trustees before the High Court in Re Storm Funding, in relation to the statutory limits applicable to the recoveries that might be made if the Pensions Regulator's powers were exercised against multiple companies.
  • Representing the trustees of the Lehman Brothers Pension Scheme before the Determinations Panel and various Upper Tribunal hearings in relation to the proposed issue by the Pensions Regulator of a financial support direction against various entities in the Lehman Brothers group, including successfully defeating the administrator's challenge to the Court of Appeal as to whether the trustees could refer certain aspects of the Determinations Panel's decision to the Upper Tribunal.
  • Acting for the trustees of the ITN Pension Scheme in High Court proceedings in connection with the proper interpretation of rules in the scheme documents relating to spouse's pensions.
  • Acting for NILGOSC in Court proceedings relating to who was responsible for the liabilities of certain deferred members of the Northern Ireland local government pension scheme which NILGOSC has statutory responsibility to administer.

Industry appointments

We participate in a wide range of pensions industry groups.


The Concept of Accrual in English Pensions Law: Some Thoughts  - 11 October 2016

Pensions World - The Acid Test - 26 July 2016

Pensions World - A Rock and A Hard Place - 26 May 2016