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Auditors issue new guidance for pensions trustees to improve governance

Thursday 8 December 2016, ICAEW (the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) has updated its guidance on master trusts to help pension trustees demonstrate good governance standards.

The new changes bring ICAEW’s voluntary assurance framework on master trusts up-to-date with current legislation and codes of practice issued by The Pensions Regulator.

The updated guidance, which follows an ICAEW consultation on proposed changes to the assurance reporting on master trusts, provides for greater trustee responsibility of control processes related to governance.

Henry Irving, ICAEW’s head of audit and assurance faculty, said: “Good governance is fundamental to pension trustees’ duties. People who enrol in master trusts expect to retire with a fair income in the future. That is why it is important that master trusts embrace high standards of practice.”

Andrew Penketh, Chair of ICAEW’s master trust assurance framework working group, said: “I am delighted that the assurance framework has already been adopted by many leading master trusts who are leaders in demonstrating good governance. The working party is very grateful for valuable input from master trusts and other interested parties during the consultation period.”

Andrew Warwick-Thompson, Executive Director for Regulatory Policy at The Pensions Regulator, said: “The master trust assurance framework continues to provide an important tool for schemes to demonstrate they are well governed and sustainable and so we welcome the changes announced today by ICAEW that reflect our new DC Code. I am also pleased that the changes to the framework encourage trustees to take greater responsibility for governance processes, something we are also calling for in our work to drive up standards of trusteeship. The framework allows Trustees to assess their governance systems and processes and to prepare for the changes announced in the Pension Schemes Bill.”

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