Following the recent publication of the draft Financial Assistance Scheme (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2010, the DWP is now consulting on draft technical guidance relating to the transfer of assets to the Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS) on the following:

  • the valuation of assets and liabilities of relevant schemes;
  • the calculation of individual asset shares for scheme beneficiaries;
  • the method to be used to equalise guaranteed minimum pensions in advance of providing data to the FAS scheme manager; and
  • changes to the calculation of the FAS “synthetic buy-out basis” used in the transfer process.

In making reference to the equalisation of GMPs, the consultation strikes a controversial note, especially in the light of Angela Eagle’s recent statement that schemes must address the issue whether or not comparators are available (see above). The DWP does state that the guidance applies only to schemes that are FAS qualifying schemes and which are transferring their assets to the Government. However, the guidance will inevitably be used as a potential example for schemes not entering the FAS to follow.

The consultation runs until 10 March 2010.

View the consultation paper.