What is my duty of care in pensions?

As an employer, you have no obligation to offer your employees a pension scheme. However, most companies fall within the scope of a mandatory sector-wide pension fund. In that case, you have no choice: you must pay premiums to the sector pension fund (Bpf) and the employees accrue pension. You may think you have a choice, by not offering your employees a pension or you by arranging a pension via a pension provider. However, you may be confronted with a visit from a representative of the sector-wide pension fund, with a request to pay premiums into the Bpf. Prevention is better than cure: as an employer, make sure you comply if you fall within the scope of a mandatory pension fund!

You also have a duty of care if the pension scheme is amended. If you have the pension scheme administered by a pension provider and you want to amend the pension scheme, then please remember that the Works Council has a right to approval. In the event of unilateral amendment, the usual strict labour law rules apply. You cannot simply amend a pension scheme by sending participants a letter. You have a far-reaching duty to provide your employees with the correct information regarding the pension scheme and the amendment. This is subject to liability for any pension losses resulting from incorrect or incomplete communication.

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