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Terms of Aptitude Accreditation for Professional Trustees

 

1.              These terms

1.1           What these terms cover. These are the terms and conditions in respect of your accreditation application for our APTITUDE (Accreditation for Professional Trustees) programme.

1.2           Why you should read them. Please read these terms carefully before you pay the relevant processing fee and submit your application to us to become an “Accredited Professional Trustee”. These terms tell you who we are, the accreditation requirements, how we will process your application, how we may change the contract, how you or we may end the contract, what to do if there is a problem and other important information. If you think that there is a mistake in these terms, please contact us to discuss.

2.              Information about us and how to contact us

2.1           Who we are. We are the Pensions Management Institute, a company registered in England and Wales with company number 01262100. Our registered address is Floor 20 Old Broad Street, Tower 42, London, England. Our head office is Floor 20, Tower 42, 25 Old Broad Street, London EC2N 1HQ until 26 April 2020. 

2.2           How to contact us. You can contact us by telephoning our customer service team at +44 (0) 20 7247 1452, writing to us at the relevant address above or by emailing us at membership@pensions-pmi.org.uk.

2.3           How we may contact you. If we have to contact you we will do so by telephone or by writing to you at the email address or postal address you provided to us in your application.

2.4           "Writing" includes emails. When we use the words "writing" or "written" in these terms, this includes emails.

3.              Our contract with you

3.1           How we will accept your application. Our acceptance of your application will take place when we send a confirmatory email following your completing and submitting your application form to us, at which point a contract will come into existence between you and us.

3.2           Please note that payment of the applicable processing fee and/or submission of your online application does not mean that the accreditation sought by you will be granted.

4.              Initial Accreditation Requirements

4.1           The APTITUDE programme is open to all professional pension scheme trustees, who meet The Pensions Regulator’s (TPR) description of a professional trustee.

4.2           To hold accreditation, you will need to apply for the APTITUDE programme through https://aptitude-pmi.org.uk, pay the applicable fee and achieve the following requirements:

4.2.1           You must have successfully completed the latest TPR’s Trustee Toolkit.

4.2.2           You must have passed the Pensions Management Institute’s Level 3 Certificate in Pension Trusteeship (CPT) Unit 1 - Professional Trusteeship - a multiple-choice exam of 60 questions, lasting 90 minutes. Please note, learners already holding the Award In Pension Trusteeship (APT), will be exempt from sitting Unit 1, and it will count towards the final certificate as having been completed.

4.2.3           You must have passed the Pensions Management Institute’s Level 3 Certificate in Pension Trusteeship (CPT) Unit 2 - Soft Skills  - a multiple-choice exam of 60 questions, lasting 90 minutes.

4.2.4           You must comply with the TPR’s ‘fit and proper’ requirements, which means that you must meet the standard of honesty, integrity and knowledge appropriate to your role as a professional trustee, as set out in more detail in the ‘Standards for professional trustees of occupational pension schemes’.

4.2.5           You must have applied for a basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check after you commence the accreditation procedure and submit the certificate to us.

4.2.6           You must provide proof of credible and relevant employment history within the industry for the past five (5) years.

4.2.7           You must provide references from two reputable figures within the industry, such as an existing accredited professional trustee, a pensions lawyer or a scheme actuary.

5.              Ongoing Accreditation Requirements

5.1           If you are successful in your application to become an Accredited Professional Trustee, to maintain your accredited status, you will be required, on an annual basis, to confirm:

5.1.1           that you remain ‘fit and proper’ in accordance with TPR’s requirements;

5.1.2           that you continue to adhere to the ‘Standards for professional trustees of occupational pension schemes’ that were originally developed and established by the Professional Trustee Standards Working Group;

5.1.3           that you have completed any new or updated modules in TPR’s Trustee Toolkit;

5.1.4           proof of credible and relevant employment history within the industry for the past year; and

5.1.5           that you have completed twenty-five (25) hours’ relevant continuing professional development (CPD) in the previous year. At least fifteen (15) hours of these must be structured CPD (‘structured’ means a formal event such as a conference, seminar or formal trustee training session).

5.2           In addition to the Ongoing Accreditation Requirements set out under paragraph 5.1, you must apply for a new basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check every three years and submit the certificate to us as part of that year’s annual renewal application.

6.              Fees and payment

6.1           What are you paying for? Please note that the fees payable under these terms are a processing fee for the service provided by us to consider your application for accreditation or, if accreditation is confirmed, as maintenance of your accreditation status (as applicable), and are not a  payment for accreditation or ongoing accreditation (as applicable)  As such, if you are not successful in your application for accreditation via our APTITUDE programme., there is no resulting right to a refund of the relevant fee that you have paid.

6.2           Is a subscription service available? You may wish to sign up to a minimum three-year subscription in respect of the accreditation. The requirements as set out under paragraphs 4 and 5 will apply in the same way if you apply for accreditation on a subscription basis  or if you simply  renew on an annual basis i.e. without a subscription. The difference with signing up to a minimum three-year subscription is that the initial processing fee (in the first year and as set out in paragraph 6.3.2 below) is lower than it would be if you were not signing up to a minimum subscription term.

6.3           Where to find the fee and what is it? The relevant fee will be the price indicated on the applicable application form when you commenced your relevant accreditation application. The fees that are payable in respect of each individual applicant are set out below:

6.3.1           Initial accreditation application processing fee (without a minimum three-year subscription) - £500 + VAT.

6.3.2           Initial accreditation application processing fee (with a minimum three-year subscription) - £250 + VAT.

6.3.3           Annual renewal fee (with and without a 3-year subscription) - £500 + VAT.

6.4           When you must pay the fee and how you must pay. We accept payment with all nationally recognised debit and credit cards. You must pay the fee on commencement of your initial or renewal accreditation application.

7.              Your rights in relation to your application

7.1           You will have six months from the commencement of your application for the APTITUDE programme and the payment of the required processing fee to complete and submit your initial application for accreditation.

7.2           Once you have become an Accredited Professional Trustee, you should complete the renewal application by confirming the Ongoing Accreditation Requirements as set out in paragraph 5 above and paying the required processing fee at least 30 days before the annual renewal date, to enable us to process your renewal application to maintain your accredited status.

7.3           If you wish to make a change to the relevant application form you have submitted, please contact us as soon as possible, and in any event, within 14 days of your application. We will let you know if the change is possible. 

8.              Our rights to make changes

8.1           Minor changes. We may make minor changes to the application process and/or the APTITUDE programme:

8.1.1           to reflect changes in relevant laws and regulatory requirements; and

8.1.2           to implement minor technical adjustments and improvements, for example to address a security threat.

These changes will not affect the outcome of individuals’ accreditation.

8.2           More significant changes. Where we make or we are required to make more significant changes to the application process and/or the APTITUDE programme, we will notify you. If this affects your application, you may contact us to end the contract before the changes take effect and receive a refund of any fees paid.

9.              Accreditation Assessment

9.1           When we will process your application. Once you have paid the applicable fee and completed and submitted your application form, we will process your application. The estimated completion date for processing your application will be within 30 days of your submission in accordance with these terms.

9.2           How will we let you know the outcome of your application. Once we have processed your application, we will email you to let you know the outcome of your application. If you have met the Initial Accreditation Requirements or the Ongoing Accreditation Requirements (as applicable), we will also issue to you an accreditation certificate which confirms your classification as an “Accredited Professional Trustee”, which will be valid for one calendar year on and from the date of issue.

9.3           We are not responsible for delays outside our control. If our processing of your application is delayed by an event outside our control then we will contact you as soon as possible to let you know and we will take steps to minimise the effect of the delay. Provided we do this we will not be liable for delays caused by the event, but if there is a substantial  delay of more than 3 months you may contact us to end the contract and receive a refund of the fee you have paid.

10.           Your rights to a refund

10.1         You can end your contract with us. Your rights when you end the contract will depend on the reason for ending the contract and when you decide to end the contract.

10.2         You may end the contract and claim a refund of the applicable processing fee where:

10.2.1        we make significant changes to the application process and/or the APTITUDE programme and this affects your application (as set out at paragraph 8.2);

10.2.2        our processing of your application is delayed by an event outside our control and there is a  substantial delay (as set out at paragraph 9.3); or

10.2.3        you change your mind within 14 days of payment of the relevant processing fee (as set out at paragraph 10.3).

10.3         Exercising your right to change your mind (Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013). You have 14 days after payment of the relevant fee to change your mind. If you cancel after we have commenced processing your application, we may deduct from any refund an amount for the proportion of the application which has already been processed as explained in paragraph 11.3 below. These rights, under the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013, are explained in more detail in these regulations.

10.4         When you don't have the right to change your mind. You do not have a right to change your mind in respect of your application once we have confirmed the outcome of your application, even if the cancellation period is still running.

10.5         If you have a problem with your application. Once you have paid the relevant processing fee, if you have a problem with your application for whatever reason and this  prevents you from completing your application, or there is some other issue, please contact us as soon as possible and we will consider the matter at our discretion.

11.           How to end the contract with us

11.1         How to tell us you want to end the contract. To end the contract with us, please let us know by doing one of the following:

11.1.1        Phone or email. Call customer services on +44 (0) 20 7247 1452 or email us at membership@pensions-pmi.org.uk. Please provide your name, address, details of the application, your phone number and email address.

11.1.2        By post. Simply write to us at our above address, including details of application, when you submitted it and your name and address.

11.2         How we will refund you. We will refund you the processing fee by the method you used for payment. However, we may make deductions, as described below.

11.3         Deductions from refunds if you are exercising your right to change your mind. If you are exercising your right to change your mind, we may deduct from any refund an amount to reflect the processing of your application which we have completed for the period ending with the time when you told us you had changed your mind. The amount will be in proportion to what has been processed, in comparison with the processing required to complete the application.

11.4         When your refund will be made. We will make any refunds due to you as soon as possible. If you are exercising your right to change your mind, then your refund will be made within 14 days of your telling us you have changed your mind.

12.           Our responsibility for loss or damage suffered by you

12.1         We are responsible to you for foreseeable loss and damage caused by us. If we fail to comply with these terms, we are responsible for loss or damage you suffer that is a foreseeable result of our breaking the contract or our failing to use reasonable care and skill, but we are not responsible for any loss or damage that is not foreseeable. Loss or damage is foreseeable if either it is obvious that it will happen or if, at the time the contract was made, both we and you knew it might happen, for example, if you discussed it with us during the application process.

12.2         We do not exclude or limit in any way our liability to you where it would be unlawful to do so. This includes liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence or the negligence of our employees, agents or subcontractors; for fraud or fraudulent misrepresentation; or for breach of your legal rights.

13.           How we may use your personal information

13.1         How we may use your personal information. We will use your personal information, also known as personal data, as set out in our Privacy Policy https://www.pensions-pmi.org.uk/privacy/privacy-policy/.

13.2         In addition to the detail within our privacy policy (referred to at paragraph 13.1 above), we will collect your personal data for the purpose of the APTITUDE programme and as follows:

13.2.1        We will maintain a public register of Accredited Professional Trustees, which will include Accredited Professional Trustees’ [full names, company, certificate number and the date of accreditation]

13.2.2        in relation to accreditation as an “Accredited Professional Trustee”, in the performance of a contract with you, which will be the lawful basis for processing your personal data in this regard; and

13.2.3        as a result of requirements set out in the ‘Standards for professional trustees of occupational pension schemes’, in addition to your identity data, contact data, financial data, transaction data and profile data that we collect when you commence your application for accreditation (details of these types of data are set out in our privacy policy), we will also collect special category data, namely the information contained in the DBS check that relates to criminal convictions. By continuing with and submitting the application form for the purpose of the APTITUDE programme, you are giving consent for us to process this special category data.

14.           COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

General Matters

14.1         If you are not satisfied with any matters in respect of these terms and the application process (other than in respect of our processing and the outcome of your application) then please contact us via email, telephone or post using our contact details at the start of these terms, for the attention of the Membership Manager with information in relation to your complaint, including your full name, address, details of the application, your phone number and email address. Any issues arising from this can be escalated internally in order to resolve the matter.

Processing and/or Outcome

14.2         If you are not satisfied with our processing of your application and/or the outcome of your application, then please contact us via email, telephone or post using our contact details at the start of these terms. Any complaints process will be dealt with in accordance with our Disciplinary Regulations https://www.pensions-pmi.org.uk/documents/pmi-disciplinary-regulations/

14.3         If your complaint is not resolved to your satisfaction, you can contact us, for the attention of the Appeals Panel in accordance with our Disciplinary Regulations https://www.pensions-pmi.org.uk/documents/pmi-disciplinary-regulations/

14.4         If, following a determination of the Appeals Panel, we cannot resolve the complaint to your satisfaction, you can take your complaint to The Pensions Regulator provided you do this within 30 days of the conclusion of our internal complaints procedure. Contact details for The Pensions Regulator are as follows:

The Pensions Regulator

Napier House

Trafalgar Place

Brighton, BN1 4DW 

15.           Other important terms

15.1         We may transfer this agreement to someone else. We may transfer our rights and obligations under these terms to another organisation. We will always tell you in writing if this happens and we will ensure that the transfer will not affect your rights under the contract.

15.2         You are not able to transfer your rights to someone else. This is because your classification as an “Accredited Professional Trustee” is personal to you and cannot be transferred.

15.3         Nobody else has any rights under this contract. This contract is between you and us. No other person shall have any rights to enforce any of its terms.

15.4         If a court finds part of this contract illegal, the rest will continue in force. Each of the paragraphs of these terms operates separately. If any court or relevant authority decides that any of them are unlawful, the remaining paragraphs will remain in full force and effect.

15.5         Even if we delay in enforcing this contract, we can still enforce it later. If we do not insist immediately that you do anything you are required to do under these terms, or if we delay in taking steps against you in respect of your breaking this contract, that will not mean that you do not have to do those things and it will not prevent us taking steps against you at a later date. For example, if you miss a payment and we do not chase you but we continue to provide the products, we can still require you to make the payment at a later date.

15.6         Which laws apply to this contract and where you may bring legal proceedings. These terms are governed by English law and you can bring legal proceedings in respect of the products in the English courts.

15.7         Removal of accreditation status. If you are the subject of any action under our Disciplinary Regulations and the applicable panel makes a finding of misconduct, then we reserve the right to remove your accreditation status with immediate effect and to notify the relevant authorities, including TPR, of the matter.