Now: Pensions has withdrawn from the master trust assurance list of providers for auto-enrolment while it resolves issues with processing contributions.
Money Marketing reported last week Now: Pensions had experienced delays in processing contributions for a “small percentage” of clients, largely due to a change in its third party administrator.
Chief executive Morten Nilsson says: “We feel that while we work to resolve these historic issues and ensure that every scheme is up to date, it’s appropriate to withdraw from the list.
“We are confident this work will be completed shortly. Providing our clients and members the best possible service remains our top priority.”
Nilsson says Now: Pensions was one of the first providers to adopt the framework and has completed it three times. He says the organisation remains committed to the framework.
The voluntary framework, designed to boost auto-enrolment scheme quality, was first published in 2014 and sets out how trustees should report against a range of objectives related to governance and administration.
The Pensions Regulator is aware of the issues Now: Pensions has been having with its systems.
A statement from the regulator says there is no suggestion that members’ assets are at risk as a result of the scheme coming off the list, or that employers whose workplace pensions are in place with Now: Pensions are not complying with their auto-enrolment duties.
TPR frontline regulation executive director Nicola Parish says: “Those in the master trust marketplace should be in no doubt that we will act if we become concerned about the way schemes are being run, no matter the size of the scheme involved.
“Schemes have a responsibility to meet specific criteria required to remain on the master trust assurance list. If a scheme fails to meet the criteria, we will consider removing it from the list.”
According to TPR, once Now: Pensions has addressed its ongoing issues, it can apply to be put back on the master trust assurance list.
Now: Pensions says it is investing in new “systems, people and processes” to prevent these problems happening again.
Between December 2014 and January 2015, Now: Pensions switched to using JLT Employee Benefits as its administrator instead of Equiniti Paymaster.