Andrew Simmonds QC - 5 Stone Buildings
Queen's counsel

Andrew Simmonds QC

Call to Bar:1980

Appointment to Silk:1999

Chambers 2016

He's exceptionally good on his feet, he's very popular with judges and he's a very attractive advocate so he garners their attention.

Andrew Simmonds QC specialises in pensions and professional negligence work but also undertakes trust, probate and financial services litigation.

Andrew’s pensions experience covers advice and litigation relating to all manner of problems and disputes arising between trustees, employers and members, complaints to the Pensions Ombudsman, the powers and duties of the Pensions Regulator and the Pension Protection Fund and claims against pensions professionals.

In the professional negligence field, Andrew has particular experience of claims against solicitors, barristers, actuaries and accountants but has also acted in claims against insurance brokers, fund managers, stockbrokers and others.

Andrew has represented the Conservative Party in a major probate action, defended Equitable Life in a class action launched by 400 policyholders and acted in the first inheritance claim based on proprietary estoppel to reach the House of Lords. Andrew was also instructed in the first pensions case to be heard by the Supreme Court.

5 Stone Buildings - brick wall
The Legal 500 – Pensions

Brave, commercial and not afraid to take a view and stick to it".

Chambers UK 2014

An elder statesman at the Pensions Bar. He always gives decisive and authoritative advice".

Chambers UK - Pensions

An ability to provide robust advice based on thorough preparation and strong technical knowledge".

About Andrew Simmonds QC

Professional Reputation

In the current editions of the legal directories Andrew is highly recommended for his pensions work. He is listed as a Star Individual in the Pensions section of the Chambers Bar Directory.

“He’s exceptionally good on his feet, he’s very popular with judges and he’s a very attractive advocate so he garners their attention.” “He’s fantastically analytical, incredibly clever and commercial.”

Chambers 2016

“Sensational”

Who’s Who Legal 2015 – Pensions and Benefits 2015

“He is one of the go-to pensions silks.”

“An elder statesman at the Pensions Bar. He always gives decisive and authoritative advice.”

Chambers UK 2014

“Simply “excellent” and “one of the top pensions silks” at the Bar”

Chambers UK 2012

“Highly intelligent”

“Leading expert in this field as a result of his precise knowledge and understanding of the legal principles relating to pensions.”

“Exceptionally clever and rigorous analyst”

“Thorough grasp of the detail.”

“An ability to provide robust advice based on thorough preparation and strong technical knowledge”

“Immensely cerebral”

“Intellectual rigour with a very pragmatic approach”

Chambers UK- Pensions

“Brave, commercial and not afraid to take a view and stick to it”

“in terms of digesting and commanding detail he is peerless”

The Legal 500 – Pensions

Qualifications

BA in Law (First Class): St John’s College, Cambridge.

Notable Cases

Andrew’s reported cases include:

  • Barnardo’s v Buckinghamshire [2017] PLR 26; switching pension increases from RPI to CPI.
  • Merchant Navy Ratings Pension Fund v Stena Line [2015] PLR 239.
  • IBM v Dalgleish [2014] PLR 335, EWHC 980, [2015] PLR 99; challenge to pension changes made by IBM on the grounds that IBM was in breach of the duty of trust and confidence owed by employer to employee.
  • Sec of State for Culture v BT Pension Scheme [2014] PLR 647.
  • Honda Motor Europe Ltd v Powell [2013] PLR 417[2014] PLR 255; dispute as to level of benefits payable to employees of Honda subsidiary.
  • Serjeant v Rigid Group Ltd [2014] PLR 143.
  • LB Re Financing No.1 Ltd v Trustees of the Lehman Bros Pension Scheme [2013] 4 All ER 744.
  • IBM UK Pension Trust v IBM UK Holdings Ltd [2012] PLR 469, [2013] PLR 33;substantial rectification claim brought by the Trustee of IBM’s main pension plan.
  • Trustees of the Lehman Brothers Pension Scheme v Pensions Regulator [2012] PLR 435. Claim for FSDs against Lehman target companies.
  • Premier Foods v RHM Pension Trust [2012] PLR 151. The High Court decided an issue relating to the equalisation of benefits between men and women in the Premier Foods defined benefit pension scheme.
  • Bridge Trustees v Yates [2011] PLR 313: Supreme Court ruling on the meaning of “money purchase benefits” for the purposes of statutory pensions regulation.
  • Prudential Staff Pensions Ltd v Prudential Assurance [2011] PLR 239: whether Prudential’s decision to limit future pension increases for its former employees breached its implied obligation of good faith.
  • BT Pension Scheme Trustees v BT/Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills [2010] PLR 487: determination of the extent of the Government guarantee of BT’s pension liabilities granted on BT’s privatisation in 1984.
  • Independent Trustee Services v Hope [2009] PLR 379: lawfulness of attempts to exploit the Pension Protection Fund lifeboat by annuitising early retirees’ benefits.
  • Thorner v Majors [2009] 1 WLR 776: House of Lords ruling on claim to inherit a farm based on proprietary estoppel.
  • Foster Wheeler v Hanley [2009] PLR 39: Court of Appeal gives guidance on the requirements of EU law relating to the equalisation of pension benefits where schemes discriminate on the basis of sex.
  • Eastearly Ltd v Headway plc [2009] PLR 279: validity of attempts by a trustee to maximise recovery of scheme deficiency from the employer under the Pensions Act 1995 employer debt provisions.
  • Re Kostic [2008] WTLR 655: whether a Conservative Party donor had testamentary capacity; guidance on costs in probate cases
  • Allied Domecq (Holdings) Ltd v Allied Domecq Pension Trustees [2008] PLR 425: application of the new scheme funding regime under Part 3 Pensions Act 2004.
  • L v M Ltd [2007] PLR 11: compatibility of pension scheme reconstruction with entry requirements for the Pension Protection Fund.
  • Hodgson v Toray Textiles Europe [2006] PLR 253: validity of employer’s attempts to equalise pension benefits where discrimination on the basis of sex.
  • Capital Cranfield Trustees v Walsh [2005] PLR 251: validity of trustees’ claim under the employer debt legislation.
  • MNOPF Trustees v Everard [2005] PLR 225: funding liability of classes of employer in an industry-wide unsectionalised pension scheme.
  • Re T&N: Alexander Forbes v Jackson [2005] PLR 33: Court directions to pension scheme trustee as to voting on a plan of reorganisation in a US Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • Pitmans Trustees v Telecommunications Group [2004] PLR 213: validity of gilt-matching strategy adopted by trustee to maximise recovery of employer debt.
  • Bayoumi v WTAEU [2004] Ch 46: validity of sale of property by charity trustees.
  • Bristol & West Building Society v Bartlett [2002] 4 All ER 544: effect of limitation periods on claims by mortgagees.
  • Hagen v ICI [2002] PLR 1: claim for misrepresentation in relation to pension benefits on a TUPE transfer of a business unit.
  • Liverpool Archdiocese v Goldberg [2001] 1 All ER 182: claim by the Roman Catholic Church for professional negligence in relation to tax advice.
  • National Grid v Mayes [2001] 1 WLR 864: House of Lords ruling on the validity of an employer’s allocation of surplus funds in an industry-wide pension scheme.
  • AMP v Barker [2001] PLR 77: claim for rectification of a pension scheme deed of amendment.
  • Walker v Stones [2001] QB 902: liability of partners for breach of trust by solicitor-trustee.
  • Barclays Bank v Holmes [2000] PLR 339: validity of funding arrangements for new money purchase section of Bank’s pension scheme.
Professional Memberships

Andrew is a member of the Association of Pension Lawyers (having served for four years on the Legislative & Parliamentary Sub-committee) and the Pension Litigation Court Users Committee chaired by Warren J. and has also served six years as a trustee of the Bar Council Pension Scheme.

Andrew is a member of the Chancery Bar Association and the Professional Negligence Bar Association.

Andrew also sits as a Deputy High Court Judge in the Chancery Division.

Publications and Lecturing

Andrew’s publications include:

  • Trust Law International14 No.4 of 2000 (overpayments to pension scheme beneficiaries: remedies and defences).
  • Trust Law International 21 No.3 of 2007 (the Pension Protection Fund 18 months on).
  • Trust Law International 27 No.1 of 2013 (Pension Schemes and Rectification).

Andrew frequently attends and speaks at pensions conferences and seminars.