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Pension Protection Fund

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 10 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how long the average assessment period for defined benefit schemes was for those who applied to the Pension Protection Fund in the 2007-08 levy year; and how many assessments exceeded the average period. (248834)

In the 2007-08 levy year 114 schemes cases entered the PPF assessment period. Of those schemes, 15 have exited the process due to the scheme being rescued or, following further investigation, being deemed ineligible and subsequently withdrawn. No schemes that entered assessment in the 2007-08 levy year have yet transferred into the PPF.

Historically it has taken an average of seven years to wind up pension schemes in the UK. Against this background the PPF has set a challenging target of 75 per cent. of schemes, and schemes covering 75 per cent. of members, completing the assessment period within two years. By law, the Pension Protection Fund assessment period must last a minimum of one year before a scheme can transfer to the PPF, and could be longer, depending on the complexity of the financial situation of both the employer and the scheme.