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Webinar Invite: Indexation: The courts’ recent wrestles with RPI

Outer Temple invites you to a multi-disciplinary webinar on the courts’ recent wrestles with RPI, with Lydia Seymour, David Grant, Philip Stear, Nicholas Hill and Richard Gibson.

What is the outlook for inflation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, lockdown and the various government support schemes for businesses? Will there be renewed pressure on schemes to explore options to switch out of RPI-based escalation?

A run of cases in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court since 2012 have confirmed that in principle scheme powers may be available to switch from RPI to CPI, following the lead taken by the State schemes (and the statutory minima for revaluation and LPI increases) in 2010. But these decisions have also suggested that there is a high degree of sensitivity to the exact drafting of scheme rules.

In this multi-disciplinary webinar, four Outer Temple barristers – Lydia Seymour, David Grant, Philip Stear and Nicholas Hill – combine with Richard Gibson of actuarial firm Barnett Waddingham to look at the current actuarial and legal landscape and to discuss how receptive the courts might now be to exercising scheme powers to change indexation provisions. There have been four important High Court decisions on RPI/CPI in the first half of 2020 – Britvic, Atos, Arup and Thales (2) – and each of them featured one of our panel as junior counsel.

The seminar is useful to all lawyers working with occupational pension schemes, whether their focus is contentious, advisory or transactional. We will look at:

  • Is there an inbuilt bias to RPI in scheme rules stemming from the way the LPI legislation (s51 of the Pensions Act 1995) is framed?
  • Where escalation provisions are messily or inconsistently drafted, how do the courts resolve the inconsistency? Are the courts predisposed in favour of or against RPI?
  • Are the courts attracted to dynamic interpretations of scheme provisions which are able to flex with technical changes to inflation indices over time?
  • All indices are living things, which undergo changes in composition and compilation methodology: are the courts able to react sensibly and sensitively to these changes?

Please note that we will circulate brief slides shortly before the seminar to enable participants to have slides available on a second screen or other device.

Webinar Details

Date: Monday 20th July 2020
Time: 5pm via Zoom

To book a place at this webinar please register here.

Events 8 Jul, 2020


Lydia Seymour

Call: 1997

Philip Stear

Call: 2018 (Solicitor since 1997)

David E Grant

Call: 1999

Nicholas Hill

Call: 2008

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