Date posted: 01/05/2013
This Notice includes guidance sent on behalf of the Cabinet Office and is for the immediate attention of:
- Finance Directors and Managers involved in the preparation of resource accounts.
- Ensure that a copy of this document is issued to each member of staff that is involved in the preparation of the Remuneration Report, and that it is read and understood by them.
- Note that for the PCSPS you will be requesting information from MyCSP Limited in order to compile your Remuneration Report; the approach you need to take is described in this EPN beginning at paragraph 15.
- Send the note at Annex 13D to all senior management reported on in departmental Remuneration Reports. This does not include Ministers.
- Replace Section 13 of the Employers’ Pension Guide (EPG) with the attached pages.
- You must apply this guidance when you prepare the resource accounts for 2012-13. You should discuss timings with your pension administrator as soon as possible.
- The Remuneration Report
Resource accounts must include a ‘Remuneration Report’, which contains information about the pay and pension packages of Ministers and the senior management team1. The Remuneration Report should include information about your remuneration policy and the individual’s contract of employment (service contracts). As well as salary and pension information it must also include detailed information about compensation paid to senior management. Disclosure of compensation information, unlike salary and pension, can only be made after you have told the individual and shown them what you plan to publish. This Notice includes guidance sent on behalf of the Cabinet Office about the preparation of the Remuneration Report.
- A reminder that there have been a number of changes to the requirements over the last couple of years. As part of the commitment to increase transparency and accountability in Central Government financial reporting the following disclosure requirements were introduced:
i. The separate reporting of salaries and bonuses in the Remuneration Report; and
ii. The reporting, by way of note to the accounts, of Civil Service exit packages awarded to all staff.
- There were a further two new requirements for 2011-12:
i. The reporting of the median earnings of the organisation’s workforce and the ratio between this and the earnings of the highest paid Director.
ii. A move to reporting of the performance of the department on its own, the department and its agencies, and the whole departmental group, including NDPBs. This will affect the disclosure of summary data of the use of exit packages.
- There are likely to be changes to the way pensions are reported from next year onwards (that is, starting with the resource accounts for 2013-14). The Government is currently consulting on draft regulations which would see the capital value of a pension represented by the simplified value used tax purposes rather than by the cash equivalent transfer value. Full details will be provided in next year’s guidance.
- Disclosure of salary and pension information
Following a decision by the Information Commissioner in 2006, salary and pension information about an individual can be disclosed without their permission. All such information must be disclosed in Remuneration Reports, unless the member argues, giving reasons, that publication would prejudice their rights, freedoms or legitimate interests, or that it would or be likely to cause unwarranted substantial damage or distress to themselves or another. If a member raises such an argument (under section 10 of the Data Protection Act (DPA)) you must consider whether to accept it. You are strongly advised to take legal advice in such a case, because if you decide not to publish this may be challenged under the Freedom of Information Act. You can also find further details in the Government Financial Reporting Manual (FReM) paragraph 5.2.19.
- Disclosure of Compensation at an individual level
Before disclosing compensation paid to a member of your senior management team you must:
- Notify the individual concerned that you propose to publish details of the benefits they received;
- Invite them to see what you intend to publish in the report; and
- Tell them that they can make a case for non disclosure under s10 of the DPA.
- If a member objects to disclosure of their compensation payments, they must explain why disclosure is likely to cause them substantial and unwarranted damage or distress. They cannot merely say that they refuse permission. You will need to take legal advice on whether the individual’s arguments satisfy the exemptions under the DPA. If the member is successful in arguing that disclosure should not take place, the fact that certain disclosure has been omitted should be disclosed in the Remuneration Report. But you will need to consider with your legal advisers how this should be done in a way that does not itself cause problems in relation to exemptions under the DPA.
- Annex 13D includes a note for you to send to senior management to tell them of the arrangements for disclosing compensation payments and their right to object under the DPA. It is important that this notice is also issued to any new senior management if they are likely to be included in the Remuneration Report.
- Ministerial severance payments are made under statute, outside of the Civil Service Compensation Scheme arrangements, and are not covered by this guidance.
- Annex 13C is an example of what a Remuneration Report might look like. Please note that you should not make changes to the notes explaining pension benefits without the agreement of the Cabinet Office.
- Compromise agreements
Where you have a compromise agreement with an individual, which contains a confidentiality clause, information about their compensation is not normally disclosed. However, it is possible for disclosure to take place in exceptional circumstances and with an individual’s express permission. Wherever a compromise agreement exists you should always obtain legal advice.
- Disclosure of exit packages
Employers must provide summary data on the use of exit packages by the department, the department and its agencies, and the whole departmental group, including NDPBs. This is in addition to the details of individual packages for those covered by the Remuneration Report. You must show the number of exit packages by cost band, and these need to be broken down by the number of compulsory redundancies and the number of other departures agreed. Comparative data must also be provided for last year (2011-12).
- For staff who left under the voluntary exit or voluntary redundancy terms, the cost to be used must include any top-up to compensation provided by the employer to buy out the actuarial reduction on an individual’s pension. For any staff who exceptionally left under the former compulsory, flexible or approved early retirement terms (because of an agreement made with them before 22 December 2010), the cost to be used is the capitalised cost of the whole package (including annual compensation payments or early/enhanced pensions). You may need to obtain information about the costs of exit packages under the former terms from your pensions administrator (the costs of packages under the new terms will be reflected in the bills you are sent by Capita).
- Compulsory redundancies are exits under the compulsory redundancy terms (or exceptionally any exits under the former terms where staff received notice of dismissal on the grounds of compulsory redundancy before 22 December 2010). Exits to be reported in the category of other departures include all cases where compensation has been paid, including dismissals on the grounds of inefficiency.
- Completing the forms and working with the pensions administrator
The form Annex 13A should be used to request the pensions and compensation information you require for your accounts from MyCSP. The requests should have a subject heading of “Annual Disclosure 2013”. You should complete Annex 13B for the pensions information you require for your accounts from the House of Commons (HoC) Pensions Unit. You should send your request as soon as possible so that they can ensure they have all the data they need on the individuals concerned. Pensions administrators will not be able to start calculations until they have updated the pension records to reflect your March payroll. It is therefore essential to discuss with your pensions administrator when your figures will be available.
- For the PCSPS you should speak with your designated Customer Relationship Manager (CRM). This is to help MyCSP in planning for the many requests for information they will be receiving from PCSPS employers over the next quarter, and so that you can establish a point of contact to see you through this exercise. If you are unsure who your CRM is, please speak to MyCSP using the relevant contact at the end of this EPN.
- Under the Contract between Cabinet Office and MyCSP the work you are asking to be done is a ‘Core Service’. As such no additional charges should be made or invoices raised with you by MyCSP.
- Employers are responsible for identifying the individuals for whom disclosure information is required and for requesting pension as described above. On receipt of the Request Form, the pensions administrator will carry out the necessary pension calculations and enter the details in the relevant boxes in the Request Form. The form is then returned to you for your action.
- You must enter an up to date salary for the member and an accurate figure of the contributions paid by the member. You will have to contact your payroll to provide you with this information. If you do not supply this information promptly you will delay your pensions administrator from getting the information back to you. The payment of legitimate expenses is not part of the salary. You must send the completed Annex 13A to your pensions administrator.
- The pensions administrator will not process your calculations unless the information is sent to them on a fully completed Annex 13A. Once the pensions administrator has received your fully completed Annex 13A, it will take them some time to return the completed calculations to you. You should discuss these timescales with your CRM. You are responsible for the security of sending the Annex 13A to the pensions administrator so please ensure that you are following your department’s guidelines.
- Partial Retirement
Under the scheme rules, people may take partial retirement if they reshape their job so that their pensionable earnings are reduced by at least 20%. On partial retirement they may draw all or part of their pension and their accrued benefits/reckonable service are adjusted accordingly.
- For the purposes of disclosure, someone who has taken partial retirement will be reported as having a mix of active and pensioner benefits. This disclosure should be made both in the year when partial retirement happens and in subsequent years.
Reporting year in which partial retirement takes place
- The start-of-year figures will be displayed as normal but the end of year figures will reflect a mix of active and pensioner membership benefits:
Member 2 has taken partial retirement from 1 December 2012 and he draws all his benefits – a pension of £43,572 and a lump sum of £130,716. (These figures must reflect any commutation decision and reflect the award sent to Capita Hartshead. However, if there was a pension share against the member then the figures reported must be pre-debit.)
At the end of the scheme year Member 2 has accrued benefits not yet in payment of £290 pension and a lump sum of £870. Add the pension/lump sum paid and the pension/lump sum accrued, but not yet in payment, together. You will receive the completed Annex 13A from your pensions administrator as below.
Pension at ED (£)
|£43,862 of which £43,572 is in payment
Lump sum at ED (£)
|£131,586 of which £130,716 has been paid
Reporting partial retirement in subsequent reporting year(s)
- It should still be noted in the Remuneration Report that a member has taken partial retirement and the amount of any pension and lump sum taken. This information should be published as a footnote in the Remuneration Report for as long as the member is being reported on.
- The lump sum disclosed for the 'active' element not yet in payment will only apply to members in classic and classic plus as per normal.
- Reasons for negative values in CETVs
There are many reasons that would cause a negative value in the “real increase in CETV” including:
i. If a rise in pensionable salary is less than the rate of inflation (with the current pay restraint, this is likely to happen in some cases);
ii. If someone joined or left mid year:
iii. In classic plus the lump sum for service up to 30.9.02 will always give a negative value
iv. The pension factors for the over 60s decrease the value of the pension that could have been taken at 60.
This document replaces EPN327
MyCSP Contact Centre: 0845 000 0012
You can find electronic copies of the Employers’ Pension Guide, all current EPNs and forms on our website.
This notice is for employers and should not be issued to scheme members.
If members have any queries about their scheme, you should direct them your MyCSP Pension Service Centre for information.
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