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Pensions Dashboards pushed back to 2026

The Department for Work and Pensions has proposed pushing back the deadline for mandatory adoption of the Pensions Dashboards Programme to October 2026.

The delay of two and a half years was announced by Pensions Minister Laura Trott this morning in a Parliamentary statement.

The announcement from the DWP has been met with frustration by many in the pensions industry.

Earlier this year Ms Trott tore up the previous schedule for the Dashboards – which are due to give pension savers ‘all in one’ online access to their pensions – in the face of mounting delays.

The further delay has brought widespread concern that the project is slipping back.

Samantha Seaton, CEO of open data platform Moneyhub, said: “While appreciative of the complexities of the Pensions Dashboard Programme, the ticking of the pensions time bomb should make this a societal priority for the government and this further change in timetable is disappointing.

“Fiddling while Rome burns is not the approach. As we have said before, we should not let the perfect be the enemy of the good and having a starting point that can be continuously refined and optimised is preferable.

“The largest master trusts and personal pension providers are ready to connect to the ecosystem and they want to get on and focus on the subsequent benefits and we are already working with many of them when it comes to developing their own end to end pensions dashboard offering.”

Howards Finnegan, product sales director at Dashboards Programme technology partner Equisoft, said: “We believe that without compulsion and with no incentive for early adoption most schemes will not follow the guideline dates. Why would companies incur costs a year or more ahead of when required by the regulator?

“This attitude was confirmed by a webinar we ran last week when over three-quarters of those we polled at the event said they would connect to the PDP eco-system six months or less before the regulatory deadline date.

“With the mandatory PDP connection deadline extended we expect most schemes will put their projects on hold, deal with more pressing challenges and restart them within 12 months of the regulatory deadline. This was confirmed by our recent polling when 100% of those surveyed said they have other more significant programmes already conflicting with their PDP project.

“Not only will this mean that all the expertise and experience built up over the past year or more will dissipate as schemes and administrators now have higher priority change projects, including regulatory initiatives such as Consumer Duty but stopping or mothballing a change programme and then restarting it a year or more later will add considerable costs to the overall project.”

Despite frustration around the timing, other elements of the Pensions Dashboard Update from the Pensions Minister were welcomed.

Nigel Peaple, director of policy and advocacy at the Pensions and Lifetime Associations, said: “Today’s statement by the Minister for Pensions that the Government remains committed to the delivery of pensions dashboards and that the final staging date will go back by one year provides some helpful clarity and flexibility for the pensions industry.

“We would, however, highlight that many in the pensions industry, including the PLSA, would have preferred the new staging timeline to be set out in regulation, as was previously the case, rather than only in guidance, as is now planned. To make this new approach work, it will be necessary for the dashboards programme to work in a very open, transparent and collaborative way such that all parts of the government involved in the project, and all those involved from across the industry, can work together as one.”

Jonathan Hawkins, principal consultant at Bravura, was also more positive about the announcement, saying it provided more certainty for providers.

He said: “Today’s announcement plays a critical role in tidying up the regulations and legislation around the Pension Dashboards Programme (PDP), providing a much-needed element of certainty on the approach at the same time.

“There is, of course, a worry that legislation differs in gravity from guidance, but it will ultimately be up to the industry to lead by example and the regulators to ensure appropriate carrots and sticks are in place to ensure the updated timelines are adhered to.

“Now that we have a backstop date in place (October 2026), the PDP must prioritise reinstating connections to the Central Digital Architecture (CDA), which will allow pension providers and firms to push ahead with their onboarding journeys.”

Claire Trott, divisional director for retirement and holistic planning at wealth manager St James’s Place, said: “Although it is disappointing that the dashboard is being yet again delayed it is more important that it is correct, not misleading and a real benefit to consumers. It would be worse to launch something that doesn’t provide any benefit, or only part of what is intended, this could mean that it fails to get engagement by those who most need this resource.”




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