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Ireland’s TPA to implement ‘reasonable’ approach to ACR

21/05/2021 Posted by IAPF | Comments(0)

The Pensions Authority (TPA) in Ireland will be "reasonable with its expectations" due to the challenges schemes face with submitting their annual compliance return (ACR).

Speaking at the recent IAPF DC conference about the key provisions and supervisory focus of the IORP II Directive, TPA head of supervision and enforcement, Grace Guy, said the authority will be issuing further guidance on the submission of the ACR towards the end of the year.

“We are aware that the first obligation to submit [the ACR] is coming along shortly so we will certainly be reasonable in terms of our expectations around that,” she said.

TPA will also issue further guidance on cross-border provisions, especially the new changes regarding the transfer of schemes, along with further guidance on the new requirement for pension benefit statements.

“I know there have been some questions around the interplay with [the pension benefit statement and] the annual benefit statement, and we are currently discussing this with the department and both sides are keen to ensure that we avoid duplication, so that is something we will issue further guidance on,” she added.

Guidance for the public and employers about the minimum standards they should expect from master trust vehicles will be published in the week towards the end of the year.

The authority also intends to publish a draft code of practice in July, with the final code of practice to be published in November.

The draft consultation in July into the code of practice will give people “a good indication of the direction of travel”, Guy said.

“The authority understands that a lot of the detail with transposing the directive is quite high level in nature. This is partly because it was transposed by statutory instrument, so we do understand that further information is required for trustees and their advisers to be able to give effect to these obligations,” she added.

“We recognise that there is more information required but our message is to get planning and be as proactive as possible to get ready to meet these obligations.”

The Irish government had completed the transposition of the IORP II Directive in April 2021, over two years later than the January 2019 deadline.

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