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The Pensions (Northern Ireland) Order 2005

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Improvement noticesN.I.

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9.—(1) If the Regulator is of the opinion that a person—

(a)is contravening one or more provisions of the pensions legislation, or

(b)has contravened one or more of those provisions in circumstances that make it likely that the contravention will continue or be repeated,

it may issue a notice (an “improvement notice”) to that person directing him to take, or refrain from taking, such steps as are specified in the notice in order to remedy or prevent a recurrence of the contravention.

(2) An improvement notice must—

(a)state that the Regulator is of that opinion and specify the provision or provisions of the pensions legislation in question,

(b)contain a statement of the matters which it is asserted constitute the contravention and of the evidence on which that opinion is based, and

(c)in respect of each step specified in the notice, state the period (being a period of not less than 21 days beginning with the date of the notice) within which it must be complied with.

(3) Directions in an improvement notice—

(a)may be framed to any extent by reference to a code of practice issued by the Regulator under Article 85 [F1or 85A], and

(b)may be framed so as to afford the person to whom the notice is issued a choice between different ways of remedying or preventing the recurrence of the contravention.

(4) Directions in an improvement notice may be expressed to be conditional on compliance by a third party with a specified direction, or specified directions, contained in a notice under Article 10 (third party notices).

(5) An improvement notice may direct the person to whom it is issued to inform the Regulator, within such period as may be specified in the notice, of how he has complied, or is complying, with the notice.

(6) Where a contravention of a provision of the pensions legislation consists of a failure to take action within a time limit, for the purposes of this Article the contravention continues until such time as the action is taken.

(7 )F2 In this Article “pensions legislation” means any statutory provision contained in or made by virtue of—

(a)the Pension Schemes Act,

(b)Part II of the 1995 Order, other than Articles 62 to 66A of that Order (equal treatment),

(c)Part II or Article 30 of the 1999 Order, F3...

(d)this Order, F4[F5...

(e)section 5(5) (pension board: conflicts of interest), 6 (pension board: information), 14 (information about benefits) or 16 (records) of the Public Service Pensions Act (Northern Ireland) [F62014F7...]]

[F8(f)paragraph 2 of Schedule 18 to the Pensions Act (Northern Ireland) 2015 (power to impose requirements relating to administration or governance)][F9, or

(g)the Pension Schemes Act (Northern Ireland) 2016.]

(8) If the trustees or managers of an occupational or personal pension scheme fail to comply with an improvement notice issued to them, Article 10 of the 1995 Order (civil penalties) applies to any trustee or manager who has failed to take all reasonable steps to secure compliance.

(9) That Article also applies to any other person who, without reasonable excuse, fails to comply with an improvement notice issued to him.

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