FINANCE NEWS: Trustees put off by bigger legal burden, Acevo seminar told

Charities are finding it increasingly difficult to recruit trustees to oversee their pension funds.

Speaking at an Acevo seminar on final salary pension schemes, Robert Smith, partner with solicitors Lawrence Graham, said legislation has made the responsibilities of trustees more onerous.

The Pensions Act 1995 made trustees more accountable and the Government's Myners report, expected to lead to legislation or a voluntary code of practice, will compel trustees to take a more active role in investment matters.

As a result, said Smith, fewer people are coming forward to become trustees of charity pension funds. One solution is to set up methods of trustee protection such as indemnity from the employer. Trustee indemnity insurance was another possibility, added Smith.

An alternative is to appoint professional trustees to run funds, so charities can be sure trustees have the required resources and knowledge, he suggested.

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