Pensions Board prosecutes Superwash Launderette Limited over failure to meet PRSA obligations
Monday 10th October: The Pensions Board today successfully prosecuted Superwash Launderette Limited for failure to comply with the Pensions Board requests for information in relation to the company’s PRSA obligations.
Superwash Launderette Limited failed to comply with the Pensions Board’s request, made by notice in writing, to furnish the Board with the names of all occupational pensions schemes established for the benefit of the employees of Superwash Launderette Limited. Superwash Launderette Limited also failed to provide the Pensions Board with a copy of the contract entered into by Superwash Launderette Limited with a PRSA provider and with confirmation of what action has been or is to be taken to fulfil the requirements of the Act in relation to “excluded employees”.
A fine of €750 was imposed by the Court on the defendant, Superwash Launderette Limited and costs of €2,400 plus VAT were awarded to the Board.
The Pensions Board, as part of its regulatory role, supervises the activities of PRSA providers in relation to their approved products and monitors employers’ compliance with the legislation regarding PRSAs.
Commenting on the prosecution, the Chief Executive Officer of the Pensions Board, Anne Maher said: “By 15 September 2003 all employers were required to have entered into a contract with a PRSA provider to allow access to at least one Standard PRSA to all “excluded employees” on and from that date. This requirement is a key component in the drive to increase private pension coverage in Ireland. The Board has a responsibility to enforce this mandatory access requirement and regards non-compliance as a serious matter.”
A Fact Sheet is attached.
The case was heard by Judge John Brophy in the District Court, Court 54, Richmond Hospital, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7 on 10 October 2005.
1. Superwash Launderette Limited having its registered address at 19 Ellen Street, Limerick being an employer within the meaning of section 2 of the Pensions Act 1990 as amended (‘the Act’) failed to comply with the Pensions Board’s request, made by notice in writing to furnish the Pensions Board with information relating to matters described in section 18(2) of the Act and in particular:-
a. The names of all occupational pensions schemes established for the benefit of the employees of Superwash Launderette Limited, if any , the Pensions Board reference number in respect of each such scheme and the criteria for membership of each such scheme; and/or
b. A copy of the contract entered into by Superwash Launderette Limited with a PRSA provider, if any, and a copy of the notification issued to employees in accordance with Section 121(2)(a) of the Pension Act 1990, as amended, informing them of their right to contribute to a standard PRSA; or
c. Confirmation of what action has been or is to be taken to fulfil the requirements of the Act in relation to “excluded employees”
A PRSA is a contract between an individual and an authorised PRSA provider in the form of an investment account that can be used to save for retirement. It is a personal pension plan where the contributions paid are tax deductible and the investment return is tax exempted. There are two types of PRSA – a Standard PRSA and a non-Standard PRSA.
About Mandatory Access – 15th September 2003
All employers were required by 15th September 2003 to enter into a contract with a PRSA provider so that access to at least one Standard PRSA is available for all “excluded employees” on and from that date.
Excluded employees are:
• Employees of an employer who does not offer an occupational pension scheme, or
• Employees included in an occupational pension scheme for death in service benefits only, or
• Employees included in an occupational pension scheme that does not permit the payment of additional voluntary contributions, or
• Employees who are ineligible to join the occupational pension scheme and who will not, under the rules, become eligible to join the scheme for pension benefits within 6 months from the date they commenced employment.
About the Pensions Board
The Pensions Board is the statutory body set up to regulate occupational pension schemes and PRSAs and to advise the Minister for Social and Family Affairs, and through him, the Government, on overall pension policy development.
For further information:
Head of Information & Training
The Pensions Board Tel (01) 613 1900
Assistant Head of Information & Training
The Pensions Board Tel (01) 613 1900
Q4 Public Relations Tel (01) 475 1444/ 087- 2371838