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Pension Advisory Group: consultation deadline approaching

Date:9 JUL 2018
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The consultation deadline for the Pension Advisory Group's draft reports is approaching on 5 August [deadline extended from 18 July].

The draft reports are available online here and here. The group is seeking to consult widely on the two reports. The first report reviews legal questions, including how s 25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 operates, how pensions might be handled in different types of case, procedural and implementation issues, and when to instruct an expert. The second report reviews the assumptions which are used by experts when valuing pensions for the purposes of sharing or offsetting, and any desirable qualifications and regulation of the experts. Reflecting the complexity of the subject matter, the reports are necessarily long. The second report also provides the reasoning behind the recommendations, including where the PAG have been able to reach agreement and where they have not.
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The Pension Advisory Group is seeking responses to its consultation questions. This consultation exercise provides an opportunity to draw on your experience in the challenging field of pensions on divorce and to have your say. If you cannot read the full reports, feel free to read whichever sections interest you and respond to the associated consultation questions.

Responses should be emailed to Hilary Woodward at: WoodwardHD@cardiff.ac.uk using the reply and consent form available here. The Pension Advisory Group will consider responses in preparing its final draft of a good practice guide for the judiciary and practitioners specialising in this field, with a target date for on line publication towards the end of 2018. It is hoped that another, shorter guide for non-specialists and the divorcing public will then follow.

As an adjunct to the consultation exercise, PAG have also created an on-line survey for lawyers and financial experts who practise in the field of matrimonial finance. The aim is to provide some context for the main project of producing a good practice guide to pensions on divorce, to gather at scale the views and experiences of those practising in these areas, and to reach as wide an audience as possible.

This survey is aimed at:
(i) legal experts in England and Wales who deal with ANY matrimonial finance cases, and
(ii) financial experts in England and Wales who have been or are involved in valuing pensions or providing reports about pensions for divorcing couples and/or the court in matrimonial finance cases. This does not need to be their main business – PAG are looking to hear from them if it forms any part of their practice.

The survey which is open until 5 August can be accessed here. It is in tick-box format and will take approximately 15 minutes to complete. The survey is completely anonymous and confidential, and does not ask for any identifying data.

The more practitioners who respond, whether to the consultation or the survey, the better informed PAG will be in finalising its guidance.