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Jonathan Chew

Call: 2010   

+44 (0)20 7306 0102jchew@wilberforce.co.uk

Pensions

Jonathan has acted for and advised a range of institutional and pensions professional clients. His current and recent work reflects relevant pensions issues:

  • for occupational schemes: e.g. RPI/CPI switches, rectification, scope of amendment power issues, and regulatory action; and
  • for personal schemes/SIPPs: misselling, pensions liberation, and investment duties. He was also instructed in relation to the Master Trust approval process.

As well as Jonathan’s forensic High Court trial experience, he is experienced in the procedural aspects of multi-party OPS pensions litigation, such as Beddoe applications, applications for directions under CPR 64, and representation orders.

Jonathan’s work spans the full range of pensions issues covering both the trusts aspects and legislative/regulatory claims, such as CNs/FSDs, section 75 debts and pensions liberation. He has been involved in disputes affecting major schemes such as Nortel and the Sea Containers 1983 schemes. In addition to litigation, Jonathan also advises work on transactional and regulatory matters.

He has been recognised in Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 for his pensions work.

“A great team player with a considerable appetite for work and eye for detail” (Legal 500)

“He is excellent at rolling up his sleeves and getting stuck in, he really knows his stuff and he inspires confidence in both solicitors and clients.” (Chambers & Partners)

As well as acting for and against the Pensions Regulator, Jonathan has acted as clerk to the Pensions Regulator’s Determination Panel on various regulatory matters.

Jonathan’s ongoing and recent contentious work includes:

  • Re Mitchells & Butlers Pension Plan: Acting for the trustee on a dispute relating to the ability of an employer to set pension increase levels, leading to disputes over rectification, RPI/CPI, and the validity of amendments, led by Michael Tennet QC and Edward Sawyer.
  • Britvic PLC v Britvic Pension Trustee [2020] EWHC 118 (Ch): acting for the Trustee on a construction summons in relation to RPI pension increase rules.
  • Acting as clerk to the DP on a recent regulatory request arising out of alleged pensions liberation and misselling.
  • Acting as clerk to the DP on a contested dispute to appoint an independent trustee to a substantial scheme.

Other historical contentious work has included:

  • Re London Quantum Retirement Benefit Scheme (Determinations Panel, 8 Feb 2016): Acting as sole counsel (against Jonathan Evans QC and Fenner Moeran QC), for the Original Trustee who had been removed by the Regulator facing allegations of misconduct, breach of trust, and pensions
  • Pollock v Reed [2016] Pens LR 129: Led by Robert Ham QC in a High Court trial acting for the employer in a proposed scheme restructuring, raising issues of the interpretation of the Presevation of Benefit Regs, the role of the PPF, and non- consensual member
  • Instructed in relation to the Nortel Scheme FSD
  • Acting with Michael Furness QC for the trustee on a claim to recover a £5m section 75 debt from a former participating employer. The claim, raising issues of trustee decision-making and consultation, settled shortly before trial in
  • Advising in relation to various alleged overpayments to members.

Examples of Jonathan’s advisory work includes:

  • Advising a successor scheme employer on its liabilities and duties under an existing scheme in the context of a substantial
  • Advising a major product provider on the various rights and duties arising from its obligations under the schemes it offers, including FSMA
  • Advising a major insurer on how to structure its internal procedures to avoid potential unwitting participation in pension liberation.
  • Advising an employer on a proposed restructuring and covenant issues
  • Advising an American scheme employer on scheme amendments and statutory and regulatory best practice in relation to member-nominated trustees.