Social Welfare Law Reform and Pensions Act 2006

39

Notice of intention by Pensions Board to prosecute.

39.— (1) The following sections are inserted after section 3 of the Principal Act:

“Notice by Board of intention to prosecute.

3A.— (1) Where the Board has reasonable grounds for believing that a person to whom section 3(1) or (4) or 18(5) applies has committed an offence under this Act and is liable to summary prosecution by the Board, the Board may give to the person a notice in writing in the prescribed form stating that—

( a) the person is alleged to have committed that offence,

( b) the person may during a period of 21 days beginning on the date of the notice—

(i) remedy as far as practicable to the satisfaction of the Board any default that constitutes the offence, and

(ii) make to the Board a specified payment of a prescribed amount accompanied by the notice,

and

( c) a prosecution of the person to whom the notice is given in respect of the alleged offence will not be instituted during the period specified in the notice and, if the default is remedied to the satisfaction of the Board and the payment specified in the notice is made during that period, no prosecution in respect of the alleged offence will be instituted.

(2) Where a notice is given under subsection (1)—

( a) the person to whom it applies may, during the period specified in the notice, make to the Board the payment specified in the notice, accompanied by the notice,

( b) the Board may receive the payment and issue a receipt for it, and any payment so received shall not in any circumstances be recoverable by the person who made it, and

( c) a prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall not be instituted in the period specified in the notice and, if the default is remedied to the satisfaction of the Board and the payment specified in the notice is made during that period, no prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall be instituted.

(3) In a prosecution for an offence to which this section applies, the onus of showing that a payment pursuant to a notice under this section has been made shall lie on the defendant.

(4) All payments made to the Board under this section shall be paid into or disposed of for the benefit of the Exchequer in the manner that the Minister for Finance may direct.

(5) ( a) A notice under subsection (1) may be given to the person to whom it applies—

(i) by delivering it to the person, or

(ii) by leaving it at the address at which the person ordinarily resides or, in a case in which an address for service has been provided, at that address, or

(iii) by sending it by post in a prepaid letter addressed to the person at the address at which the person ordinarily resides or, in a case in which an address for service has been provided, to that address.

( b) Where a notice is to be given to a person who is the owner or occupier of land and the name of the person cannot be ascertained by reasonable inquiry, it may be addressed to the person by using the words ‘the owner’ or, where appropriate, ‘the occupier’.

( c) For the purposes of this section, a company within the meaning of the Companies Acts 1963 to 2005 shall be deemed to be ordinarily resident at its registered office, and every other body corporate and every unincorporated body shall be deemed to be ordinarily resident at its principal office or place of business.

(6) Any amount prescribed for the purposes of subsection (1)( b)(ii) shall not in any case exceed the maximum fine which may be imposed on summary conviction for the offence concerned.

Prosecutions.

3B.— (1) Every document purporting to be a copy of, or extract from, any document kept by the Board and purporting to be certified by an officer of the Board authorised in that behalf by the Board, whose official position it shall not be necessary to prove, to be a true copy of, or extract from, that document shall, without proof of the signature of that officer, unless the contrary is proved, be admissible in evidence in all legal proceedings as of equal validity with the original document.

(2) In any legal proceedings (including proceedings relating to an offence) a certificate signed by an officer of the Board authorised in that behalf, whose official position it shall not be necessary to prove is, without proof of that officer’s signature, admissible, unless the contrary is proved—

( a) if it certifies that the officer has examined the relevant records and that it appears from those records that a specified notice was given or sent to a stated person at, or left at, the address and on the date stated therein, as evidence that the notice was given or sent to that person at, or left at, that address on that date,

( b) if it certifies that the officer has examined the relevant records and that it appears from those records that a specified notice was given or sent to a stated person, or left at the address and on the date stated therein, as evidence that the notice was received by that person at that address on a date 3 days after the date on which the document was given or sent to the person at, or left at, that address,

( c) if it certifies a document as a copy of the registration details of a scheme with the Board by the trustees of that scheme in accordance with section 60, as evidence of the registration,

( d) if it certifies that the officer has examined the relevant records and that it appears from those records that during a specified period a document or any other thing was not received from a specified person, as evidence that the person did not during that period provide that document or thing and that the document or thing was not received by the Board, or

( e) if it certifies a document to be a copy of an authorisation by the Board under section 16, authorising the delegation of functions to the chief executive or a member of staff of the Board, including but not limited to the function of instituting proceedings on behalf of the Board, as evidence that the functions are so delegated.

(3) In this section—

‘officer of the Board’ means a member of the Board, the chief executive or member of staff of the Board;

‘notice’ means any request, notice or other document.”.

Annotations:

Modifications (not altering text):

C3

Reference to Pensions Board and chief executive of the Pensions Board construed by Pensions Act 1990 (25/1990), s. 9A as inserted (7.03.2014) by Social Welfare and Pensions (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013 (20/2013), s. 26, S.I. No. 103 of 2014.

Change of name of Pensions Board and chief executive

9A. (1) The name of the Pensions Board is changed, and on and after the commencement of section 26 of the Social Welfare and Pensions (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013 it shall be known, in the English language, as the Pensions Authority or, in the Irish language, as An tÚdarás Pinsean.

(2) References in this Act or in any other enactment to the Pensions Board shall, on and after the commencement of section 26 of the Social Welfare and Pensions (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013, be construed as references to the Pensions Authority.

(3) The position, heretofore known as the chief executive of the Pensions Board shall, on and after the commencement of section 26 of the Social Welfare and Pensions (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013, be known as the Pensions Regulator.

(4) References in this Act or in any other enactment to the chief executive of the Pensions Board shall, on and after the commencement of section 26 of the Social Welfare and Pensions (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013, be construed as references to the Pensions Regulator.

(5) In this section, ‘enactment’ has the same meaning as it has in the Interpretation Act 2005.