The Pensions Regulator publishes DC code

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has published regulatory guidance for defined contribution (DC) pension schemes.

The code, which came into effect on 21 November 2013, sets out how pension trustees can meet the requirements of pensions legislation.

It had been the subject of a consultation earlier in 2013.

The guidance provides information, education and assistance on good-practice standards of governance and behaviours that relate to delivering good member outcomes.

Its aim is to protect retirement savers and to ensure their money is invested into schemes that are well run in members’ interests. Employers could incur enforcement action if they fail to comply with the new standards.

Nick Cook, senior consultant at Towers Watson, said: “The code and guidance are an important step in addressing the governance issue, but it is important that trustees do not view it as a ‘tick the 31 boxes and move on to something else’ exercise.”

In 2014, TPR plans to undertake reviews of the extent to which DC schemes are compliant with pensions legislation and will publish a template ‘comply or explain’ governance statement that DC trustees can use to inform scheme members, the employer and TPR whether they meet the regulator’s six principles and 31 quality features for DC schemes, which it published in January 2013.