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Managed by the Pension Protection Fund
18.12.2023 By News Editor

Our submission to Norton pension schemes select committee inquiry

Our submission to the Work & Pensions Select Committee to support its inquiry into the Norton pension schemes and the Fraud Compensation Fund (FCF) has been published. 

The inquiry is looking at the lessons that can be learned from the experience of the collapse of the Norton pension schemes with the aim of ensuring members of collapsed pension schemes are better protected and supported in the future. To support this, the Committee launched a Call for Evidence earlier this summer, which concluded in October. Our submission, and that of other respondents, has now been published.  


Whistleblowers raised concerns with the Pensions Regulator (TPR) in 2013, after the sole trustee of the Norton pension schemes, Stuart Garner, invested the schemes’ assets in Norton Motorcycle Holdings Ltd. Garner was the sole director of the company. 

In May 2019, following an investigation, TPR appointed Dalriada as the independent trustee to the three Norton pension schemes.  

In March 2022, Mr Garner was given a suspended jail sentence for illegally investing pension schemes’ money into his business.  

Our work to progress the application 

We carried out a review of the initial evidence submitted by the schemes’ trustees, Dalriada, in December 2022 and are continuing to work with the trustee as they seek to establish an eligible claim for FCF compensation.   

 We’ve also been working with other public bodies to provide an ‘in-principle’ decision on whether an act of dishonesty took place to provide members with the reassurance their claim will be eligible for compensation.  

Sara Protheroe, Chief Customer Officer, said: “While the conditions for an eligible claim haven't yet been met as there hasn’t been a qualifying insolvency event, we have been working pragmatically to process the application from the trustees of the Norton Motorcycles pensions schemes.  

“In March, this year, we reached an in-principle decision that an act of dishonesty had taken place and following this we have continued to work closely with the trustees so we can progress to compensation as quickly as possible when the claim becomes eligible for FCF compensation." 

Making the fraud compensation system more efficient 

The inquiry will consider TPR’s approach to preventing loss of pension assets through fraud or dishonesty and whether there is scope to speed up the process of assessing eligibility for compensation and making payments.  

In our submission, we have also highlighted a case for reviewing legislation to better support future victims of scam schemes. 

Ms Protheroe added: "It's clear that the pensions fraud landscape has evolved since the legislation governing the FCF can into effect - although we will continue to work flexibly and innovatively to progress applications, we believe there may be a case for reviewing legislation to make sure the FCF can process claims more efficiently. As an example, we think consideration should be given to the implications of giving the Board greater discretion in relation to the insolvency requirement and compensation calculation."