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13 Nov 2009: Pensions Ombudsman Statement on Ulster Bank Pension Scheme Changes

 

Statement by the Pensions Ombudsman
 
Ulster Bank Pension Scheme Changes
 
The Pensions Ombudsman wishes to make it clear that he will not comment on the merits of the changes currently being proposed by Ulster Bank to his pension arrangements.
 
While he had brief informal discussions with both the Bank and the IBOA , these were undertaken with the sole objective of trying to lessen the possibility of complaints being made to his Office in the future in relation to what is being proposed.
 
The statutory independence of the Office of the Pensions Ombudsman in the adjudication of complaints in the pensions area rules out any comment on issues, such as changes to the structure of a pension scheme, which might form the basis for complaints in future. His concern at present was simply to ensure that staff now considering options would be able to do so on an informed basis. To that end, the Bank has made individualised information available to members through a help desk and the Pensions Ombudsman is satisfied with that arrangement.