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    My top pointers for any school that has left TPS or used phased withdrawal

    07 December 2023

    Caroline Gaines

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    1 minute read

    Any school that has opted to leave the Teachers’ Pension scheme or its Scottish equivalents (TPS/STPS/STSS), or perhaps no longer support it for new hires by using phased withdrawal, is now in a world of providing a completely different pension benefit to its teaching staff: the Defined Contribution (DC) pension.   

    Having advised employers on DC pensions for over 15 years, here are the top 3 items that I think any employer should make sure they don’t ignore:  

    Automatic enrolment duties:  

    Are you checking that payroll assessments work correctly and providing the appropriate statutory communications to employees?   

    Any employer using a contribution basis thats more than qualifying earnings should be testing and certifying the contribution basis they offer at least up to every 18 months. We know many employers omit to do this and make mistakes.   

    Is there a plan for re-enrolment and making sure that all relevant employees are included?  

    5 key questions to ask about your AE pension scheme
    Ongoing monitoring:

    Providing a DC pension to employees doesn’t stop at the appointment of a provider and implementation of the new scheme. Are you monitoring the performance of both the provider and the default investment to ensure they’re delivering good outcomes for your employees? 

    Employee communications: 

    Many employers rely on the provider to issue the pension communications, but our experience tells us that employees pay more attention to information provided by their employer. The world of DC pensions is very different to the TPS. Employees need to pay a bit more attention to their pension savings and have more decisions to make when they take their benefits. Are you helping your employees get the best out of their plans to make informed choices as they save?  

    The above are three key areas that any employer should be focussing on, but even more so when there has been a change from a Defined Benefit scheme like TPS or STPS to a DC scheme.  

    Its not your day job to know, understand and manage your way through this, but it is ours…and we’d be happy to talk to you about how we can help.  

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