We know that each organisation has its own HR philosophy and that pensions do not exist in a bubble. We provide strategic, bespoke advice for employers on a range of pensions and HR issues.
Our expertise is sought after for complex projects, such as scheme changes at the cutting edge of benefit design, as well as for more detailed points of day-to-day policy and compliance. Our clients operate some of the UK's largest pension schemes and many of them have been with us for many years, appreciating our ability to build up a partnership to support them on the full spectrum of issues they face. Typical examples of our services include advising in relation to:
- scheme closures
- changes to scheme benefit design such as alterations to pensionable pay and introducing defined contribution or revised defined benefit accrual
- benefit modification and liability management projects
- benefit issues on outsourcing and transfer of employees
- automatic enrolment
- handling employee complaints and the pensions aspects of termination of employment
- integration of pension benefits with other reward and incentive arrangements
- employee communications
- outsourcing and managing relationships with third party pension providers
- strategic responses to industry changes such as the pensions "freedom and choice" reforms.
We tailor our approach to suit our clients' objectives and ways of working, but we also pride ourselves on offering a high-quality service led by our partners – leading industry experts who are involved in our clients' work not just occasionally, but continuously. Lawyers from our employment, employee incentives and pensions groups work together as one team, integrating with your team and collaborating with you to deliver practical, cohesive solutions.
Our lawyers regularly engage with new legislation, helping to shape new law and practice and stay ahead of the curve.
"the team's strengths are the desire to build a relationship, a deep understanding of us as their client and good communications between parties."
- Acting for a major financial institution to redesign its defined benefit schemes around a ground breaking "selectable accrual" principle.
- Advising the Gatwick Airport Pension Plan on the introduction of a variable rate for future accrual, designed to ensure employer contributions do not fluctuate.
Advising on the establishment of a new defined contribution (DC) section of the AXA UK Group Pension Scheme and the closure of the existing DC section to certain new employees.
Advising the Trustees of the C&J Clark Pension Fund and the Clarks Flexible Pension Scheme in connection with the sponsoring employer's proposals to terminate accrual in those schemes.
Strategic advice to several large US corporations on their UK defined benefit pension arrangements and associated HR, ER and legal issues.
Advising the TRW Pension Scheme
on its £3.5billion liability management exercise which was completed to a very tight deadline and with lots of innovative features, including a record breaking £2.5billion buy out with Legal & General.
Advising a range of employers on auto-enrolment and re-enrolment compliance and associated matters including salary sacrifice, pension arrangements for senior executives, and dealing with lifetime allowance protections.
We participate in a wide range of pensions industry groups as well as the Employment Lawyers Association.
Automatic enrolment and re-enrolment: upcoming deadlines for employers – 4 October 2017
Pensions World: Auto-enrolment Revisited - 18 October 2016
Pensions World: The Acid Test - 26 July 2016
Pensions World: Good Practice, Good Outcomes - 1 September 2015