Addleshaw Goddard has a team dedicated to resolving disputes involving every type of pension scheme.

Our expertise includes:

  • Member complaints and claims
  • Claims and applications relating to errors in scheme documents
  • Claims against professional advisers - actuaries, administrators, professional trustees and fund managers
  • Acting for trustees defending claims - including for negligence, breach of contract and breach of trust/duty
  • Acting for employers challenging trustee decisions
  • Court applications for directions on the proper running of schemes and High Court appeals
  • Acting for trustees, employers and administrators on Pensions Ombudsman complaints
  • Data loss issues, including dealing with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Information Commissioner's Office
  • Mediations, expert determinations and other forms of alternative dispute resolution
  • Defending employers and representing trustees in relation to The Pensions Regulator (TPR) enforcement activity
  • Disputes between Small Self-Administered Scheme (SSAS) trustees, members and administrators
  • Defending Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPP) trustees and administrators in relation to FCA and TPR enforcement activity
  • Pension liberation issues
  • Financial Ombudsman Service complaints
  • Challenging HMRC and defending clients against HMRC enforcement action
  • Litigation involving public sector pension schemes

Examples of our clients, experience and testimonials are set below. Alternatively, if you would like to speak to a member of our Pensions Disputes team, please get in touch directly.

Clients and experience

Recent highlights include acting for:

  • The trustees of a pension scheme against a group member complaint to the Pensions Ombudsman involving pension increases under the scheme
  • The sponsoring employers in Part 8 proceedings brought by the trustees over its pension scheme. The trustees sought a court determination of the correct interpretation of the scheme rules relating to spouses' benefits and the proceedings were resolved by agreement between the parties
  • The trustees of a pension scheme in Part 8 proceedings. The trustees sought the court's directions in relation to the management of the scheme and the distribution of benefits. At issue was the validity of instruments that purported to amend it over a twenty-year period. The decision of the High Court is due to be appealed in the Court of Appeal in July 2016
  • The sponsoring employer, defending High Court proceedings brought by a pensioner relating to an ill-health pension claim
  • Parties in a dispute with Scottish Life about a £1 billion plus defined benefit scheme concerning pensions liberation from it to Scottish Life offshore bonds
  • A corporate client on its dispute with the scheme administrator over the theft of sensitive personal data relating to the client's pensioners
  • Employers regarding claims where problems were discovered with the establishment of a pension scheme that had been in operation for a number of years. This includes communicating with HMRC and TPR and bringing successful claims against professional advisers

"Acclaim for their fearsome reputation … very impressive"
Chambers (2015)

"Regarded as having a strong pensions litigation practice that encompasses tax, professional negligence and trusts disputes"
Chambers (2013)

"Of the highest calibre, and the best pensions litigators in the North of England"
The Legal 500 (2012)

Key contacts

Meet the team
Susan Garrett

Susan Garrett

Partner, Dispute Resolution
United Kingdom

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