Pensions & Incentives

In today’s volatile economy, a well-planned remuneration package is essential in attracting and retaining top talent

Pensions and incentives play a key role in keeping your staff motivated and engaged with your mission, but the design of these packages requires careful planning.

Our dedicated pensions and incentives team work closely with colleagues across our corporate, tax, regulatory, banking and finance teams to ensure the advice you receive is all-encompassing and easily actionable.

The expertise of our specialist lawyers extends into broad employee benefit schemes, allowing us to provide pragmatic support in setting up equity incentive arrangements, cash settled bonuses and deferred incentives.

Expertise

Auto-enrolment is one of the most significant recent changes to the nature of pension provision in the UK. Our specialist team have seen first-hand the challenges that employers have in complying with new obligations and are on hand to work with you to identify qualifying employees, review communications and contracts with pension providers.

If you are looking to wind up the pension scheme you run, it’s critical that it is properly closed to new members, future service accrual or completely wound up. Our dedicated lawyers have the expertise necessary to provide hands-on support throughout the entire process, ensuring the winding up of a pension scheme is followed legally, that the relevant authorities are alerted, and employees are given clear communication.

Our experts draw on experience in all forms of pension and life assurance arrangements to help employers, trustees and intermediaries with scheme documentation including re-writes, consolidations and amendments.

Your business’ pension scheme is one of the most valuable benefits on offer to employees. However, it’s also an area in which difficulties can arise due to highly complex regulations. We appreciate the challenges that both employers and trustees of pension schemes deal with as a result of stringent regulation from the Pensions Regulator – that’s why our dedicated legal team are here to help you keep your business compliant and run your pension arrangements risk-free.

Ending employee contracts is rarely easy, let alone the drafting of a compromise agreement upon termination. We appreciate how such agreements can quickly lead to bitterly fought disputes, particularly where pensions are involved. Our goal as your dedicated lawyers is to take the weight off your shoulders by providing practical guidance through the drafting of a compromise agreement that protects your interests.

With vast experience advising clients on company share option plans, we bring a full awareness and understanding of their advantages and drawbacks. Our approach always begins by gaining a full understanding of your unique requirements – that way, we can help you navigate the options and identify the best solutions. While company share option plans are no longer approved in advance by HMRC, you can count on our experts for practical advice and hands-on guidance through the new self-certification system

Employee share incentive plans or SIPS are typically suitable for larger, usually listed, companies. SIPs enable companies to invite eligible employees to own shares in the company, but are governed by a set of specific rules such as obtaining shareholder approval in accordance with UKLA rules. We work with a number of listed companies and large organisations to provide clarity on the special guidelines that apply to employee share schemes to ensure your staff can benefit from company growth in a way that is fully compliant with the rules.

An enterprise management incentive (EMI) is an employee share option scheme that allows employees to acquire shares in the company for a set price. Due to the attractive tax benefits on offer with this scheme, EMIs are one of the most popular incentive schemes in the UK. Our specialist lawyers work closely with employers ranging in size and industry to provide guidance through legislative requirements and qualification conditions.

For further information or to discuss a matter please telephone 0333 772 0926 or click here to email us.

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