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Pensions Act 2008

Section 69: Consultation of members and employers

161.Section 69 provides that the scheme order must require the trustees of the scheme to make arrangements for consulting the scheme members and participating employers about the ongoing operation, development and amendment of the scheme. These arrangements must include the establishment of members’ and employers’ panels to represent the interests of members of the scheme and participating employers.

162.The trustees will have decisions to make about the operation of the scheme. These will include decisions on how the scheme should be developed and whether it should be amended. The trustees will have to consult the scheme members and employers about these decisions. To help with the consultation, the trustees will have to create panels to represent the members and employers. The make-up and functions of these panels could be set out in the Order or under it (e.g., in Rules). The members’ panel could be allowed to propose people for appointment as members of the trustee corporation. The panel could use those proposals to help ensure that their interests are represented. (This would be in the spirit of the provisions for member nominated trustees and directors in the PA 2004.)

163.The Order will also be able to allow for payments to be made to panel members from scheme funds. This could include payment for their time and expenses.

164.A scheme created under section 67 could potentially cover a very wide and diverse range of employers and employees, making it difficult for the trustees to keep in touch with all their opinions. The members’ and employers’ panels will act as representative bodies to keep the trustees informed and provide feedback about how the scheme is working. The trustees will consult both panels before any changes are made to the scheme.

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