Lawyers give their view on the shifting pensions landscape

Significant shift in the lawyers’ views on TPR’s powers and on the question of whether companies should pay dividends or divert cash to pension contributions

We brought together a group of over 100 leading pension and restructuring lawyers to discuss key issues in the sector and to survey them on a number of matters. This was the fifth time we have brought this group together since 2007.

The 2019 results show a significant shift in views since our previous survey as well as consensus in a number of areas.

‘Quicker, clearer, tougher’

  • 8 out of 10 lawyers believe TPR’s powers are having an impact on their clients.
  • This is a significant increase from our previous survey where only 3 out of 10 lawyers thought this.
  • However, 90% of lawyers would not recommend their client going for Clearance, raising questions on how Clearance will fit into TPR's future strategy.

To pay or not to pay dividends?

  • 9 out of 10 lawyers believe TPR’s stance will see cash move from dividends to deficit contributions.
  • The lawyers that we surveyed also believed that affordability would remain the biggest concern for their clients due to the competing pressures on cash from other stakeholders.

Looming UK recession

  • 3 out of 4 lawyers predict a UK recession within the next two years, with the likely cause to be Brexit uncertainty.

Polarised views on Brexit outcome

  • Lawyers mirror the general public and are split on whether there will be a ‘hard’, ‘soft’ or no Brexit.

Should the PPF be able to vote against CVAs?

  • Lawyers believe that the primary focus for the PPF when voting on a CVA should be to ensure pension schemes are treated equitably.

Contact us

Jonathon Land

Jonathon Land

Partner, Pensions Credit Advisory Leader, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)7879 411796

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