$500K debt paid to pensions

| 28/03/2014

Cayman Pensions(CNS): The government department responsible for private sector pensions is finally getting to grips with the major delinquency issues surrounding private sector pensions and the massive failure on the part of local employers to follow the law and the even bigger past failure of the authorities to enforce it. According to the director of Labour and Pensions, who has been focusing heavily on this growing and potentially disastrous problem for Cayman, since the start of the year, employers have paid in almost a half million of owed cash including cash directed into funds by the courts. The number of delinquent cases has also been reduced from near 700 in 2011 to 159.

Based on data provided by two of the six multi-employer pensions plans, officials from the national pensions office said that since January 2014 delinquency payments received from employers in arrears beyond those resolved in court have accumulated to the value of CI$468,416.

The National Pensions Board (NPB) also revealed In a progress report released Thursday March 27 (CNS has requested a copy and is awaiting a response) that the long-standing backlog of complaints files and related cases has been cut dramatically. Originally the office was facing a mountain of almost 700 case files but an audit of those complaints through 2012 and 2013 led to a revised count of 378 files.  The audit revealed a number of redundant as well as multiple duplicated files on the same business. As of 28 January 2014 another 219 files were resolved or closed.

Of the remaining 159 cases currently open, the officials stated that 84 are under investigation, 52 are identified to be fast tracked, six are on a payment plan, 11 have been resolved but not closed and only six have been found to be statute-barred.

During the twenty month review period the NPO had assigned four permanent Senior Pensions Officers and four temporary officers to tackle the remaining files and the work appears to have paid off. 

Officials said the officers prioritised several aging files going back to1998 when the law to mandate pensions was passed. But officers have also been working on the most recent complaints and officials said interim data suggests that since the start of the year 86 new complaints were  resolved with an accumulated value of CI$131,326.

Two long-standing cases involving charges for breaches of the law were resolved in Court with payments of arrears by the two employers into the pensions fund account of the employees of those companies, made in the amount of CI$148,000.00.
Director of the Department of Labour Pensions, Mario Ebanks was pleased with the progress.

“The SPO’s [Senior Pensions Officer] defined a robust strategy to review and process the outstanding files, which proved to expedite our work,” he said. “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.”

He said the department would continue to work diligently to monitor and manage the ongoing pensions' delinquencies and arrears, resolve new complaints, as well as educate employers and employees on the National Pensions Law and the 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, and can be contacted at 945-8960 during regular business hours of Monday to Friday, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. The office's website is at www.npo.gov.ky.  The Department has also established a hotline for confidential information and tips, tel. 345-945-3073.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Pensions shouldn't be for work permit holders.  Their monies are going out of the country…why should the employers pay pension to those who aren't keeping their money here.  Pensions have lost monies.  I have lost quite a few thousand dollars since inception of pension….

    • Anonymous says:

      What you are not taking into account is (a) that some of the work permit holders will become permanent residents and some of those Caymanians, and (b) the larger pension pot allows for better investment opportunities.   

  2. Anonymous says:

    Paying back is not enough.  There needs to be serious penalties too.  Or is the Goverment too cowardly to do the right thing?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Please put your money into this ponzi scheme

     they think that if they pump it up it wont fail as fast.

     That said I am sure that the value of the funds have decreased since last year while the benifits that have been pledged have gone up.

    Total loosers running this place




  4. Anonymous says:

    So have they accounted for what people lost in investment income when employers dont pay?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Shouldn't be a problem for them to pay it. They just screwed another 7.5 k out of me for extra fees on my permit. I just personally paid 1.5% of their 500 k. You are welcome

  6. I miss Marius says:

    Kudos to Mario Ebanks

  7. Anonymous says:

    What was the cost to the public purse for the 4 temporary staff?!?!?!

    • Anonymous says:

      And were  these staff paid with pension proceeds or the tax payers money?