Time for trustees to take the initiative
The global financial crisis is having a significantly detrimental impact on many pension schemes and gloomy predictions by industry experts, politicians and the media indicate that this is likely to continue for some time to come. Trustees of all schemes have a basic fiduciary duty to monitor investments and should therefore consider taking a proactive role in tackling these issues head on. This could include calling an early trustee meeting to assess how the current crisis in financial markets has impacted upon their pension schemes and what they can do to best protect members’ benefits.
However, trustees cannot act in isolation in such straitened economic times as these and will be even more dependent upon employer support. Trustees should ensure that sponsoring employers are actively engaged with any necessary action points. One way of doing this would be to invite company representation to any additional trustee meeting which takes place.
In May 2008, international law firm Hammonds became a limited liability partnership. Hammonds LLP and its affiliated undertakings has offices in Birmingham, Leeds, London and Manchester in the UK, and in Berlin, Brussels, Beijing, Hong Kong, Madrid, Munich and Paris.