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United Kingdom > East Anglia > Human resources > Pensions > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

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The employment law practice at Mills & Reeve LLP in Norwich has a dedicated pensions lawyer in consultant Laura Sayer, who focuses predominantly on private sector pensions work but last year handled a growing number of matters relating to public sector pensions. Sayer, who sits on the East Anglia Committee of the Pensions Management Institute and on the public sector sub-committee of the Association of Pension Lawyers, works closely with the team based in Birmingham, where national practice head Clare Grice resides, to serve clients based in the region and in London. Sayer provides day-to-day advice to the trustees of the Jarrold & Sons Limited Pension Plan, who last year sought her counsel on a proposal to buy-in pensioner and deferred benefits with an insurance company. This required a thorough analysis of the benefits to be insured, advising on the discretions as part of the insurance policy, and reviewing the insurance contract that was ultimately signed with Aviva. She also assisted the trustees of M&H Staff Pension Plan with the move to a liability-driven investment strategy with P-Solve.

The pensions practice at Hewitsons is 'excellent - the lawyers are always helpful, provide clear advice and are reasonably priced'. Head of pensions Christopher Nuttall works mainly from Northampton but is a regular attendee at the Cambridge office. Clients describe him as 'very pragmatic, clear and always keen to help clients'. The practice acts for employers and trustees of private sector occupational pension schemes throughout the UK and also has significant experience in public sector pensions, particularly involving the local government, healthcare and education sectors. Among the practice's clients are franchise car dealer Perrys Group Limited, trustees of the Sortex Final Salary Scheme, trustees of the Domino Printing Sciences plc Pension Scheme, and Biochrom Limited.

Greenwoods GRM joins the ranking on the strength of consultant Pauline Anning's specialist pensions practice, which complements the work of Robert Dillarstone and John MacAulay in the firm's standout employment practice. Anning has more than 20 years’ experience in advising corporate entities, public authorities, trustees and unions on occupational pension schemes. Last year, she advised a large client in the insurance sector on the reorganisation of its employee benefits package, which included issues of automatic pension enrolment compliance and pension scheme amendments.

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Legal Developments in East Anglia for Pensions

  • Companies should plan now to minimise their pension protection levy

    The amount that pension schemes have to pay to the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) for the year 2006/07 may have increased by as much as five times the previous year's levy. Employers who ultimately bear the cost of many pension schemes will need to make plans now to ensure the levy payable for the year 2008/09 is kept to a minimum.
    - Stephenson Harwood

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