· News

Pensions regulator to make sure pensions trustees help members make informed decisions about their pensions

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has launched a campaign to promote better practice in defined-contribution pension schemes.

Over the next few months TPR will take steps to ensure pension trustees are aware of their duties and responsibilities to scheme members as well of their role in helping members make the right decisions about their pension.

The regulator will also take steps to ensure members are sure of their retirement options and that employers are encouraging employees to think about their long-term savings.

Earlier this week, the regulator's chief executive, David Norgrave, was reported as saying: "People are going to have to work longer, partly because we are not going, as a nation, to save for retirement as we did in the past."

But a spokeswoman from TPR told HR magazine: "We play no active role in setting such rules. It is an issue for the Department for Work and Pensions and it is Parliament that sets the state pension age. We do have an integral part to play in making UK pensions work better and deliver results for the millions of occupational scheme members."

TPR has updated its leaflet, Making your Retirement Choices, for trustees to give to staff six months before retirement.

It is also about to commence a survey of pre-retirement literature in an attempt to improve the information for employees approaching pension age.

The spokeswoman added: "We believe we will make a major difference to members through this work. A 65-year-old male purchasing an annuity could lose up to £600 a year if he chooses the lowest rather than the highest annuity quote. So making an informed choice is very important. Members must shop around and must know that they have many choices when it comes to organising their retirement income."