Pensions and pensions de-risking

Our pensions team is renowned for its advice in acting for corporates and trustees on key issues of funding negotiations, benefit changes, scheme closures and dealing with the Pensions Regulator. Our pensions de-risking practice sets us apart in the market, with particular expertise in the field of insurance de-risking solutions for pension schemes, including longevity swaps and pension scheme buy-ins and buy-outs.

Our range of pensions services include:

  • advice on the management of pensions issues on sales, acquisitions, domestic and international business transfers and reorganisations, including the management of section 75 debts, clearance applications and negotiations with the Pensions Regulator and trustee boards;
  • pension issues on transfers from the public sector and within privatised industries;
  • advice on cross-border and international arrangements;
  • liability management including buying-out liabilities, buy-in policies, enhanced transfer value exercises and benefit re-shaping;
  • advice on changes to pension plans, including new pension structures for managing pension liabilities, mergers, de-mergers, benefit changes, special issues relating to former public sector employees and employee communications and consultations;
  • guarantees and other types of contingent asset;
  • investment management and financial product work;
  • establishing new pension schemes;
  • special projects;
  • advising trustees on all aspects of on-going scheme management: benefit issues, the impact of legal changes, scheme governance and conflicts and negotiations on funding;
  • advising employers and trustees on scheme winding up, entry into the Pension Protection Fund and management of schemes in assessment periods; and
  • the management and resolution of pension disputes, including High Court litigation, Part 8 claims and Pensions Ombudsman cases.

What people are saying


"One client says: "The high level of commerciality and diligence makes them a reliable partner."

Chambers UK 2018

"Macfarlanes LLP provides 'clear, unambiguous and pragmatic advice."

The UK Legal 500 2017

"Clients say 'They have a wealth of experience.' and 'it is a very smooth and efficient operation'."

Chambers UK 2017

"Macfarlanes LLP’s ‘small but strong’ team is made up of ‘solid and experienced practitioners’."

The Legal 500 UK 2016

"Clients say: 'They offer a very sensible and commercial approach'."

Chambers UK 2016

"They balanced the ability to be very technically precise and accurate with pragmatism in order to express the needs of the scheme. They provide a high-quality professional service."

Chambers UK 2015