There has been published on the legislation.gov.uk website the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Banking Reform) (Pensions) Regulations 2015 (the Regulations) together with an explanatory memorandum.
As certain banks carrying on core banking activities will be required to be ring-fenced, the Regulations impose certain requirements on ring-fenced banks in relation to pension liabilities to ensure that, with the exception of certain circumstances, they cannot become responsible for group-wide pension liabilities.
Amongst other things, the Regulations:
- requires that a ring-fenced bank make arrangements to ensure that it does not participate in multi-employer pension schemes, or have shared pension liabilities, with parties other than certain members of its group;
- empowers the trustees or managers of a multi-employer pension scheme in respect of which a ring-fenced bank is an employer to modify the scheme, with the consent of the employers of that scheme, for the ringed-fenced bank to meet the pension ring-fenced requirement; and
- requires that where a ring-fenced bank is party to a proposed corporate restructuring or other arrangement for the purposes of meeting its obligations as a ring-fenced bank, or proposes to make any arrangements in order to comply with the ring-fenced requirement, it must apply to the Pensions Regulator for a clearance statement in relation to its pension arrangements where the proposal is likely to be materially detrimental to them.
The Regulations came into force on 5 March 2015.