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USS dispute update – Joint Expert Panel

Earlier in the week saw the announcement that there were a new set of proposals coming out of the talks facilitated by Acas between UUK and UCU.

These proposals focussed on the creation of a new Joint Expert Panel, comprised of actuarial and academic experts nominated in equal numbers from both sides, to deliver a report agreeing key principles to underpin the future joint approach of UUK and UCU to the valuation of the USS fund.

Since then, UUK have given the UCU assurance that employers would not seek to return to the previous position agreed at the JNC on 23 January, and would commit to achieving a solution that includes an element of defined benefit.

Yesterday, UUK have confirmed that employers have indicated their support for the proposals and the UCU announced that their branches and Higher Education Committee have voted to put the proposals to their members in a ballot.

In the meantime, discussions continue between UUK, USS and the Pensions Regulator to make sure of the necessary statutory and regulatory support.