Scheme wind-up: who’s at the helm?
12 Nov 2019
Navigating a course to scheme wind-up can be complex and costly, and it can be easy to run aground. For example, holding illiquid assets when it comes time to transact, a lack of documentation for historic annuities or finding unknown unknowns in the data.
Keeping the wind-up on an even keel means setting a course which is clear (with a view to controlling risks, costs and timescales) and having all hands on deck pulling in the same direction (that is, all of the stakeholders involved - including the company).
Having someone well equipped to deal with storm warnings as and when they arise, and able to stem the tide if things start to go off course is vital. So, with that in mind it’s worth asking “who’s at the helm?”.
According to TPR’s good practice guidelines, schemes should put in place an “accountable person” to manage the wind-up process, “parties involved in a scheme wind-up should be clear about who’s managing the process and driving it forward. Appointing someone to act as project manager who is accountable to the trustees for delivering the plan for the wind-up often assists in speeding up the process.”
This ties in firmly with our approach which is to appoint a wind-up specialist to lead the process instead of giving the role to another stakeholder who has little, if any, experience of wind-ups and who already has a day job to do.
Appointing a wind-up specialist as your “accountable person” can:
- help to support each stakeholder, including other advisers, efficiently and effectively;
- provide the depth of expert knowledge and experience needed to manage this complex, multi-stakeholder project; and
- ensure your wind-up is given the dedicated time and attention it needs.
In our view, with a wind-up specialist at the helm, a scheme wind-up should be plain sailing - anchors away!
Want to find out whether your scheme is wind-up ready? Click here to find out.