Written answers

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Department of Social Protection

Pension Provisions

9:00 pm

Photo of Michelle MulherinMichelle Mulherin (Mayo, Fine Gael)
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Question 295: To ask the Minister for Social Protection if he will provide details of the proposed changes to pension legislation pertaining to defined benefit pensions schemes for print workers and the status thereof; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [7919/12]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)
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The Government has approved a number of changes to defined benefit (DB) pension provisions in order to enhance the security of members benefits and to increase equity in the provision of pension benefits between scheme members.

It is proposed to reform and strengthen the Funding Standard by requiring DB pension schemes to hold a risk reserve as a protection against future volatility in financial markets; change how pensions schemes benefits are re-valued to ensure more equity between deferred and current scheme members; grant powers to the Pensions Regulator to wind up a scheme in very limited circumstances and provide for a more equitable distribution of scheme assets when an underfunded scheme is wound up while at the same time continuing to prioritise the benefits payable to pensioners.

The proposed amendments to the Pensions Act, 1990 are currently the subject of detailed drafting considerations. The proposed changes will apply to all DB schemes and not just to print workers who may be members of DB scheme.

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