The budget available to The Pensions Regulator has increased by £4.3 million from 2018 to 2019 and it has announced plans to crack down on employers who are not taking their pension responsibilities seriously, as well as announcing a new anti-scams campaign.
In its latest three-year corporate plan, covering the 2018-21 period, TPR vowed to become "a clearer, quicker and tougher regulator". The corporate plan for 2018 – 2021 outlines how TPR will focus on key areas of activity, including:
- Driving up standards of trusteeship and stewardship across all pension schemes.
- Authorising master trust schemes.
- Ensuring employers meet their automatic enrolment duties.
- Ensuring defined benefit (DB) schemes are effectively regulated.
- Working with the government to implement the proposals set out in the White Paper on the future of DB schemes.
34% of their budget will be allocated to The Pension Regulator's Frontline Regulation team, 16% to automatic enrolment and 20% to policy and advisory work. This shows that a significant majority of resources will be directly focused on delivering better regulatory outcomes. The headcount at The Pensions Regulator will increase by 12% over the course of the year as a result of its increased remit and workload.
TPR Chief Executive Lesley Titcomb said: "Our corporate plan sets out how we are becoming a clearer, quicker and tougher regulator. It highlights our wide regulatory remit including ensuring employers meet their workplace pension duties, authorising master trusts, securing funding for defined benefit schemes and a continued commitment to fighting scams"
"By delivering on our eight corporate priorities we will ensure TPR meets the regulatory challenges of the future and will address the biggest risks facing the pensions industry."
TPR Chairman Mark Boyle said: "The pensions landscape has been changing significantly. We are meeting this challenge by embedding a new regulatory culture and reinforcing our regulatory teams on the frontline."
"In the coming year, you can expect to see us being more vocal about our expectations of those we regulate and intervening quickly and decisively through our wide-ranging regulatory activity and enforcement powers so that workplace pension schemes are run properly and people can save safely for retirement."