National Pensions Office Releases Investigation Results
Published 27th March 2014, 4:52pm
The National Pensions Board (NPB) and the Acting Superintendent of Pensions have announced that the National Pensions Office (NPO) has reduced its long-standing backlog of complaints files/cases to 159, officials revealed in a progress report released today, March 27, 2014.
Working on a case-by-case basis, from April 2012 to December 2013, the National Pensions Office (NPO), which is a Division of the Department of Labour & Pensions, decreased the backlog from an estimated 600 – 700 files estimated in 2011 to a revised validated count of 378 files. The significant reduction in files was a result of a full audit completed on December 3, 2013 that revealed redundant files, and multiple/duplicated files open for a single business. As of 28 January 2014, a further 219 of the 378 files were resolved and closed, or submitted for closure.
Of the remaining 159 cases currently open, 84 are under investigation, 52 are identified to be fast tracked, six are on a payment plan, six were found to be statute-barred, and 11 have been resolved but not closed. For 9 months during the 20 month review period, the NPO (Pensions Division) had assigned four permanent Senior Pensions Officers (SPOs) and four temporary SPOs to attend to the remaining files.
As part of their approach, officers prioritised several aging files dated as far back as 1998. These were attended to by the SPOs, working alongside either the Director of the Department of Labour & Pensions (DLP) who is also Superintendent of Pensions in the NPO, under the National Pensions Law.
In other news from the National Pensions Office, interim data has determined that since January 2014 86 new Complaints were resolved, with an accumulated value of CI$131,326. Additionally, two long-standing cases involving Charges for breaches to the National Pensions Law were resolved in Court with payments of arrears by the two employers, into the pensions fund account of the employees of those companies, were made in the amount of CI$148,000.00. It is also worthy of note that, based on data provided by 2 of the 6 multi-employer pensions plans, between January 2014 to date that delinquency payments received from employers in arrears, beyond those resolved in court have an accumulated value of CI$468,416.00.
Commenting on the process and results to date, Director of the Department of Labour Pensions, Mr. Mario Ebanks said, “The SPO’s defined a robust strategy to review and process the outstanding files, which proved to expedite our work. Although it will be some time until we get caught up with all of the backlog cases, including progressing some for prosecution, we now have a more accurate position of where we are with respect to the backlog cases. We continue to work diligently to monitor and manage the ongoing pensions delinquencies/arrears, adjudicate and resolve new complaints, as well as educate the employers and employees on the proper application of the National Pensions Law and Regulations.”
The National Pensions Office, a division of the Department of Labour and Pensions, is located on the 2nd Floor, Mid Town Plaza, Elgin Avenue, George Town, can be contacted at 945-8960 during regular business hours of Monday to Friday, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm, or visit the website at www.npo.gov.ky. The Department has also established a hotline for confidential information and tips, tel. 345-945-3073.