Stephen Richards

Partner

A big scheme specialist, Stephen advises employers, trustees, and master trusts on all types of pensions issues. He has a commercial style on strategic issues and brings a responsive approach on day to day matters. With the ability to present complex ideas in a simple way, Stephen has helped a variety of clients with tricky pensions issues, from the trustees of global banks to UK manufacturers.

Stephen joined Stephenson Harwood from Allen and Overy to complement our strong and growing pensions team. As a rising star in pensions law, Stephen further enhances the reputation of the firm's pension practice.

He is an expert on pensions in the banking sector, large pension schemes, Pensions Regulator issues and master trusts. Stephen has experience on major strategic projects including advising on the acquisition of a major master trust provider and the largest company contribution made to a pension scheme to date. Stephen is also a trustee so he understands what trustees need from their advisers. Stephen established the Pensions Innovation Café, and likes to present advice in a modern, user friendly way.

Stephen‘s recent experience includes advising on multiple transfers to DC master trusts and the trustees of several of the UK's major pension schemes on all day to day legal issues. He also gave strategic advice on major Pensions Regulatory issues for a FTSE 100 company as well as to a global telecoms company on world-wide pensions issues.

 

 


Stephen Richards is a very charismatic and able lawyer. He seems to be a real rainmaker – since joining the firm they have picked up some very big clients.

The Legal 500 UK 2020
Insights

In conversation: Transfer to master trust

This is an important conversation for anyone involved with a workplace DC pension scheme. The government has proposed some draft regulations which are due to come into effect on 5 October 2021. These are likely to force those running workplace trust-based DC schemes to transfer those schemes to a master trust. 

Occupational DC schemes - are you ready?

From October 2021, it is proposed that new and game-changing obligations for those involved in occupational defined contribution (DC) schemes will come into force. These will require certain schemes to compare their value for members against the value offered by large commercial DC schemes and, ultimately, result in increased consolidation of schemes in this area.

Pensions 2021 - the top six topics to watch

2020 was not the year that any of us expected. With Brexit and Covid-19 occupying much of the Government's time, it is little surprise that some of the developments that were expected to occur in the pensions world did not materialise.