APPT launches small firms forum

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Over 300 professional trustees have now applied for accreditation through the official Association of Professional Pension Trustees' (APPT) programme.

The latest milestone comes following the launch of the APPT’s Small Firms’ Forum – a platform for professional trustees who work as sole traders or in small firms to share experiences and expertise, as well as discussing technical, commercial and governance challenges.

The official accreditation framework, which is overseen by the APPT, is designed to promote and maintain a single set of standards across the professional trustee industry.

In order to become fully accredited, professional trustees need to demonstrate their competency through passing exams covering technical and soft skills, while also demonstrating that they are fit and proper, through criminal record and professional reference checks. APPT accredited trustees can now use the AMAPPT designatory trade mark to indicate the standard they have reached.
The Small Firms’ Forum, which has already signed up 45 members from across the UK, will ensure all professional trustees have the support they need to continue to deliver best practice and comply with the highest industry standards.

Nita Tinn, Chair of the Association of Professional Pension Trustees, says: “We have welcomed over 100 new members over the last year, all achieving accreditation. It’s great to see the number of APPT accredited professional trustees continue to grow, despite what has been a challenging 12 months for everyone. Official APPT accreditation is recognised by the industry as the principal accreditation provider for professional trustees, and we want to encourage all members of the professional trustee community including those working for small firms or operating as sole traders to come forward and become accredited.”

Ian Pittaway, Senior Partner at pensions law firm Sackers and the APPT’s Small Firms’ Forum lead, says: “Our Small Firms’ Forum is providing a platform for professional trustees who work alone or in small teams to discuss matters of common interest. The engagement that we have had already highlights that there was a real need to increase opportunities for knowledge sharing. It’s only by collaborating and challenging each other, that we will continue to develop as an industry.”

The Small Firms’ Forum recently held its first virtual session on the Pensions Act. Upcoming sessions will focus on PI insurance and the new IR35 tax rules.