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Pensions (No. 2) Act (Northern Ireland) 2008

Section 42: Penalty notices: recovery

Sections 40 to 42 provide the Pensions Regulator with powers to issue penalty notices where the Regulator is of the opinion that there has been a failure to comply with a compliance notice, a third party compliance notice, an unpaid contributions notice, a notice requiring certain information (Article 67 of the Pensions (Northern Ireland) Order 2005) or any of the provisions listed in section 40(2).

A fixed penalty notice (section 40) will require the person to whom it is issued to pay a penalty of up to £50,000 within a specified timeframe. Regulations will set out the actual penalty rate.

An escalating penalty notice (section 41) can be issued in cases where there is continuing failure to comply – such as where a fixed penalty notice has been ignored. The penalty will escalate at a rate prescribed in regulations but will not exceed £10,000 per day.

An escalating penalty notice cannot be issued if the Regulator is in the process of undertaking a review of a compliance notice, a third party compliance notice or an unpaid contributions notice, following an application for review by the person to whom such a notice was issued. The Regulator may not issue an escalating penalty notice if the person has exercised his right to make a referral (appeal) to the Pensions Regulator Tribunal against a fixed penalty notice and the referral has not yet been determined (subsection (2)).

The Regulator can recover any penalty payable under sections 40 or 41. Any such penalties recovered by the Regulator must be paid into the Consolidated Fund (section 42).

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