Section 277: Consent orders: pensions
372.This section extends section 276 so that an order involving pension rights can be made with the consent of the parties involved. As pension rights cannot be transferred to the trustee for civil recovery and then realised, subsections (2) and (3) provide that the trustees or managers of the pension scheme may make a payment to the trustee for civil recovery and make any agreed adjustment to the scheme if they are party to the agreement. Subsection (4) makes clear that they have the power to enter into such agreements.
373.Subsection (6) goes on to mention that a consent order will override the provisions of the pension scheme to the extent that they conflict with the provisions of the order. Section 273(4) provides for the trustees or managers of a pension scheme to recover costs. Subsection (7) of section 278 makes identical provision for consent orders.
374.Subsection (8) provides that sections 273(5) and 274 will also apply where an order is made by consent. This means that any rules preventing the commutation, surrender or variation of pension rights will not prevent the making of a consent order – and that the pension scheme will be required to adjust its liabilities following a payment under a consent order.