Sarah has been practising pensions law since 2007 and has extensive experience on a wide range of pension scheme issues.  She regularly drafts pension scheme documentation and provides advice to trustees and employers on complex scheme issues, such as equalisation and the interpretation of pension scheme provisions.  She also has a number of years’ experience as a professional pension scheme trustee, and is able to apply the lessons she has learnt from this role to much of her advisory work.

Sarah is an approachable and conscientious lawyer who puts the needs of her clients at the heart of the advice she provides.  Her logical and organised approach to pensions law enables her to guide pension schemes effectively through sometimes complex pensions projects.

Recent work undertaken by Sarah includes:

  • negotiation and agreement of a benefit specification and buy-in contract on behalf of a professional trustee, including advice on the terms of and risks associated with the contract, and on the treatment of overpayments and underpayments resulting from data cleansing work;
  • advice on adjustments to a scheme's forfeiture provisions to reflect recent case law, including consideration of the impact of the adjustments on existing forfeiture cases;
  • advice to a trustee board on two separate scheme mergers - one being an internal transfer between two segregated sections of the scheme, and the other involving the transfer in of a scheme into a newly created section, including follow up advice on data and benefit issues identified within the transferring scheme;
  • advising the trustees of a scheme in relation to the implications of a complex corporate restructuring proposal on the Scheme (including master trust and employer-related investment issues; employer covenant and employer debt implications; and the impact of the proposal on a PPF guarantee);
  • drafting and negotiating a Type A PPF guarantee to remove a non-exclusive jurisdiction clause which had created some post-Brexit enforceability concerns;
  • detailed advice on GMP equalisation and conversion, including the amendment of the scheme to allow for conversion for pensioner and deferred members and consideration of associated tax concerns, as well as the rectification of historic benefit payments;
  • advising the trustees of a scheme about a proposal to close a scheme to the future accrual of benefits, including the consideration of complex amendments required to the rules of the scheme as a result of the closure;
  • drafting a consolidation and update of a pension scheme’s definitive trust deed and rules for a scheme, including negotiation with employer advisers;
  • providing pension scheme secretarial services to a number of trustee boards, including assistance with maintenance and updating of scheme records, the production and maintenance of scheme governance documents, and preparing trustee meeting packs and minutes.


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