"very good, very responsive and his service is outstanding."
Chambers UK 2019

Overview

Richard Evans is a partner in the Pensions practice of the London office. He acts for trustees and sponsors on the full range of pensions issues, including compliance, scheme documentation, investment, dispute resolution and winding-up. He is adviser to many household-name schemes, including several with assets in excess of £1bn.

Richard is a member of the Association of Pension Lawyers and a Fellow of the Pensions Management Institute. He authored the pensions section of The Encyclopedia of Employment Law, and regularly writes and speaks on pensions issues.

Spoken Languages

  • English

Experience

Scheme funding and contingent assets
Richard advises trustees and sponsors on funding negotiations and associated dealings with the Pensions Regulator. He acted for the trustees of a FTSE100 scheme in putting in place one of the UK's first asset-backed contribution arrangements with a value of £200m. He has advised on the full range of contingent assets, from parent company guarantees to a £500m escrow arrangement.

Buy-ins, buy-outs and liability management
Richard has extensive experience of de-risking projects. He has advised trustees on more than 20 buy-ins and buy-outs – for example a series of deals enabling a major scheme to secure liabilities for its entire pensioner population (total value £800m). He has acted on the winding-up of many DB schemes including the UK arrangement of a major international bank, advising on buy-out terms, trustee protection and refunds of surplus. Richard is a key member of the Firm's Pensions Risk Transfer Group, a cross-practice team which provides a joined-up service for trustees who wish to de-risk.

DC schemes and master trusts
Richard acts for several DC arrangements, among them a major manufacturer's scheme with 10,000 members and assets of £300m. He has substantial experience of DC governance issues, automatic enrolment and the authorisation regime for master trusts.

Scheme changes
Richard has advised on numerous projects to change benefits or merge pension schemes. He acted for the trustees of a £2bn scheme on the hard-closure of its DB section coupled with the move of active members to an improved DC section. He acted for the trustees of a £700m scheme on an eight-way merger and on associated commitments from the sponsor to protect the interests of affected members.

Corporate transactions
Richard advises both trustees and sponsors on the pensions aspects of corporate transactions. He has acted for FTSE100 companies on global outsourcings and M&A deals with values of up to £2bn. He has advised trustees on matters such as the demutualisation of an insurer sponsor, and the £385m asset-backed refinancing of a retail sponsor coupled with the grant of security to the pension scheme.

Restructuring and insolvency
Richard regularly advises alongside insolvency colleagues on pensions issues in relation to distressed employers. He was a key member of the Firm's team which advised the Pension Protection Fund on the restructuring of Hoover Limited and the settlement of its pension liabilities. Richard also acted for the trustee of the Woolworths Group Pension Scheme in relation to the insolvency of Woolworths and the scheme's successful entry to the PPF.

Education

The College of Law, Chester

University of Oxford, Brasenose College

Admissions

  • England and Wales

Memberships

  • Association of Pension Lawyers
  • Fellow, Pensions Management Institute
  • According to clients Richard Evans is "very good, very responsive and his service is outstanding." He is recognised for his guidance on a range of issues facing pensions schemes such as funding and liability management. (Chambers UK 2019).
  • Listed as a key name. (Legal 500 2018).
  • Richard Evans advises on substantial work including scheme segregation, merger and closure to future accrual. Sources say: "He is good at handling complex issues. He gave clear, proportionate advice on what is reasonable to do." (Chamber UK 2018).
  • Richard Evans is rated for his "very practical and proportionate advice." He is well versed on the implications of corporate transactions and frequently advises on scheme restructurings and wind-ups. Clients say: "He helps interpret very complex pensions issues into layman's language." (Chambers UK 2017).
  • Richard Evans is a rising star of the pensions sphere who offers clients a broad pensions law practice. Clients report that he "knows his stuff and is technically very good." (Chambers UK 2016).
  • "very clear in the way he writes his pensions advice" (Chambers UK 2015).