Pension Protection Fund panel placement for Smith & Williamson audit experts

December 19, 2013

The Bristol-based pensions audit team of accountants Smith & Williamson has been appointed to the new Audit Services Panel launched this week by the Pension Protection Fund (PPF).

The team joins the new six-member panel which aims to ensure that workers with pensions in companies that go bust do not lose out or face an excessive wait for compensation.

The panel’s role covers companies that become insolvent and whose defined benefits pension schemes cannot afford to pay what was promised. It will oversee progress through the PPF assessment period and Finance Assistance Scheme (FAS) as efficiently as possible so that they can be wound up and members properly compensated.

Smith & Williamson partner and head of the pensions audit team Matthew Maneely, pictured, said: “We are looking forward to developing long-standing and collaborative relationships with the PPF, fellow panellists and other panels already in operation.

“Our pensions audit team has two key differentiating factors. It works exclusively on pensions audits and the team includes ex-pension scheme administrators. This industry experience, together with our total focus on pension audit work, gives us a rare breadth and depth of experience.”

The panel, which started work this month, will be expected to complete timely and accurate audits of the accounts required throughout the assessment process. It will collaborate with all other stakeholders to assist schemes through the assessment or wind-up process to give certainty to members as quickly as possible.

The panel, the fourth set up by the PPF, will initially run for a two years and follows those for trustee advisors, administrators and actuaries.

The PPF protects millions of people throughout the UK who belong to defined benefit pension schemes. It pays compensation for their lost pensions to workers whose employers go bust and cannot meet their pension liabilities.

Tens of thousands of people now receive compensation from the PPF and hundreds of thousands more will do so in the future. The PPF is a public corporation, set up by the Pensions Act 2004, and is run by an independent board.


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