Pensions accounting for LGPS employers - delivered using our NeXtStep package
Employers in the LGPS often obtain their accounting disclosures from their fund's actuary, but they are free to appoint any actuary that they wish and many are discovering the benefits of doing this. PensionsWatch offers more services for a very low fixed fee, so our clients can obtain updates during the year without incurring additional costs. For example, we can provide projected disclosures at any month end so employers can budget for the future with greater certainty.
Independent LGPS actuarial advice
Organisations participating in the LGPS are accustomed to receiving highly controlled actuarial information from their fund's administering authority. The main communications being the triennial valuation results and the associated employer contribution rates.
However, employers typically require many other actuarial services such as accounting, advice in connection with termination and advice related to outsourcing (pricing, risk analysis, risk sharing agreements and calculation of indemnity bonds).
There is no legal requirement for employer actuarial services to be provided by the fund's actuary – employers are free to appoint any actuary they want.
Historically, most employers have used information provided by the fund's actuary, however, the pensions environment is changing rapidly. Employers and their advisers, in particular, their lawyers, increasingly recognise the very real potential for conflicts of interest.
Potential conflicts of interest are not the only driver for change – newer and lower-cost technologies and greater levels of competition between actuarial service providers mean that independent actuaries can offer a more personal and responsive level of service at a lower cost.
Our actuaries are independent of LGPS funds and have the expert knowledge and technical capabilities to advise any organisation on any actuarial aspect of their LGPS participation. Put simply, independently advised employers will be better informed and better equipped to meet the challenges of the future.
Managing LGPS cessation
Many admission bodies, particularly those in the not-for-profit sector have genuine affordability concerns and may ultimately be faced with the prospect of leaving their fund.
NeXtStep provides a cost-effective solution for developing and managing an exit strategy identifying financially advantageous exit conditions and supporting the negotiation of a realistic and affordable settlement.
Corporate accounting services
Our flagship NeXtStep package is now available for private sector clients, and some are already seeing the benefits. With our low cost base we are confident that we can produce FRS102/IAS19 disclosures more cheaply than other advisors without compromising on quality, and in addition we offer a bespoke fixed fee package that includes 5 hours of free consultancy time.
Corporate scheme funding advice
If you are sponsoring a defined benefit pension scheme then our actuaries can help you to negotiate with the scheme trustees on all scheme funding matters to help you to achieve a more favourable outcome and take better control of the process.
Public sector outsourcing
Letting authorities and contractors usually require significant support in properly managing the pensions issues arising in the event of a TUPE transfer. However, the level of information provided by administering authorities is often limited.
Our team can provide support at every stage of an outsourcing project including pricing, exit issues and assisting in the design of commercial risk-sharing agreements.
Whether communicating about complex design issues, such as salary sacrifice, or more basic scheme design, our specialists can help put together appropriate communications. This can help employees in obtaining the best value from their package which, in turn, increases the perceived value of the pensions package offered.
Pension benefits re-design
If you are looking to reduce costs or manage risks, our actuaries and other pensions professionals can help you better achieve your goals. Our advice is higher tailored to each case and, as with all of our services, our low cost base means that clients obtain real value for money.
Expert witness work
Our experienced actuaries are ideal in providing pursuers and defendants with an opinion on actuarial matters, and we can calculate or verify any loss suffered.
Multi-academy trusts (MATS)
Our unique fixed fee package means that MATS can obtain low cost accounting disclosures with just one point of contact and one set of consolidated disclosures, no matter how many LGPS Funds they participate in. Our rates consider the economies of scale of dealing with many schools and many MATs pay less than half of what they would otherwise pay.
The included free consultancy allowance can be used towards any new conversions in the year or any other pensions issues, leading to significant savings in both costs and management time. This means that MATS can benefit from pensions advisors on hand throughout the year without without worrying about incurring any extra costs.