UK - Aon Consulting has flagged up issues of concern in relation to proposals from the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) regarding the calculation of the PPF levy for 2008-09.
Earlier this week, the PPF proposed setting the pension scheme levy for three years between 2008 and 2011.
The PPF explained the move was in response to levy payers who have called for greater stability in both the levy estimate and their individual levy bills - and for more advance notice of what their bills might be.
Aon Consulting said while it welcomed the consultation document, which showed a considerable amount of thought had gone into finding workable solutions, it raised key issues needing requiring careful consideration around feasibility and fairness.
In the first instance, Aon Consulting said the PPF was proposing to use funding measures and failure scores that are significantly out of date.
It said the 09/10 levy, as proposed, would ignore any contributions paid and contingent assets put in place over the preceding 12 months and would be based on accounts that are at least a year or even up to two-and-a-half years out of date, depending on a company's year end.
Subsequently, this could lead to unfair treatment at times of significant change in either the pension scheme or the sponsor, explained the firm.
Referring to this point, Kevin Burgess, a consultant and actuary at Aon Consulting, said: "We have some concern that the information submitted by a company, for example company accounts, may be so out of date that it is irrevelant."
Furthermore, Aon Consulting said the proposals mean that the position at 31 March 2008 would be used to set levies for two years, making it doubly important for companies to do what they can to improve their position by that time.
In response, Richard Hunt, head of press at the PPF, said: "We welcome comments. It is part of the consultation process."
He added that the PPF had a track record of making changes where it was appropriate.
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