Skip to main content

Occupational Pensions

Volume 927: debated on Tuesday 8 March 1977

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.


asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if it is his intention to take steps to require occupational pension schemes to provide transferability of full existing pension rights for members changing their jobs before the normal age of award; and if he will make a statement.

Those responsible for running accupational pension schemes, employers, scheme administrators and their advisers have had to respond to the provisions in the Social Security Act 1973 which deal with the preservation of pension rights for those who leave their jobs before normal pension age; and are currently engaged with the contracting-out requirements of the Social Security Pensions Act 1975, which start in April 1978. This existing legislation will provide a considerable measure of protection for the pension rights of those who change jobs. I do not believe that it would be right, particularly at the present time, to consider introducing any requirement for the compulsory transferability of pension rights, with all the complications that would involve for pension schemes, without any further study of the matter, although I appreciate the merits of complete transferability—which at its best implies the payment of the most advantageous pension no matter how many jobs have been held. The Government have already said that they would refer this difficult question to the Occupational Pensions Board for advice, and I shall consider when it might be appropriate for such a reference to be made.