Pension Dashboard  

TPR threatens £50k fines for dashboards non-compliance

TPR threatens £50k fines for dashboards non-compliance

The Pensions Regulator will impose fines of up to £50,000 for non-compliance over pensions dashboards. 

The regulator is seeking responses from the pensions industry to its consultation on its dashboards compliance and enforcement policy. 

Published on November 24, the policy sets out the watchdog’s expectations for scheme managers and trustees on meeting compliance, while also explaining its approach to enforcement should the legislation be breached.

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In October, TPR published its consolidated enforcement powers, which included a raft of largely discretionary penalties.

Each penalty can reach £5,000 for an individual and £50,000 in other scenarios – for example, applying to a corporate trustee.

"We are aware that the months ahead will be challenging for the pensions industry as they prepare to meet their dashboards duties,” said David Fairs, TPR’s executive director of policy, analysis and advice. 

“We will be supporting them by writing to all schemes at least 12 months ahead of their connection deadline to help them understand what they need to do by when, in accordance with our published guidance.”

Schemes still waiting for pieces to slot into place

The consultation will close on February 24 2023. TPR expects to publish its final dashboards policy in spring 2023, before the first schemes’ dashboards deadlines in August 2023.

“The dashboards timetable is an ambitious one and there is a lot for trustees to do,” Sackers associate director Oliver Topping said.

According to a Sackers survey of 53 respondents representing trustees and employers of defined benefit and defined contribution schemes, a lack of legislation is hampering schemes’ abilities to prepare for dashboards.

More than three-fifths of respondents “are waiting for the pieces to start slotting properly into place so they understand exactly what’s needed”, Topping said. 

A third of those surveyed, meanwhile, have yet to decide how to connect to the dashboards ecosystem, with several options available.

TPR confirmed that it would have the option of issuing multiple penalty notices in response to breaches of dashboards legislation.

It asked respondents to its consultation to consider whether they agreed with the policy principles of its compliance and enforcement regime. The regulator is also seeking to understand if it has provided sufficient clarity over how it will monitor compliance and of the powers available to the watchdog.

TPR will consider a list of factors when deciding whether to take regulatory action, including consideration of the scale of any breach, the numbers of members affected, and whether the breach is the result of deliberate non-compliance.

"We will be pragmatic in our approach to regulating dashboards compliance and will not be looking to simply issue fines,” Fairs said.

“However, it is not acceptable for schemes and their administrators to do nothing, and we’ll take a dim view of wilful or reckless non-compliance.”

B&CE director of policy Philip Brown supported the proportionality of TPR’s approach to regulating dashboards.