Lesley Browning is a pensions partner based in London. She graduated from Keble College, Oxford. She has experience of all types of pensions-related work, including general advisory work for employers, trustees, insurance companies and firms of benefit consultants.
Lesley advises on corporate transactions (including IPO's, outsourcings, infrastructure transactions and cross-border transactions), pensions scheme mergers, restructuring pension arrangements, winding-up pension schemes and investment, transition and custody agreements. She also advises insurance companies and banks on pension products, including the drafting of trust based documents. She has also advised various clients on liabilities to industry wide schemes, such as the Merchant Navy Officers Pension Scheme.
Lesley's corporate experience includes extensive advice on dealing with underfunded schemes, including on section 75 of the Pensions Act 1995, the moral hazard provisions set out in the Pensions Act 2004, clearance applications to the Pensions Regulator and dealing with the PPF. She has advised on contingent assets, guarantees, recovery plans and other scheme funding issues. She also has extensive pensions litigation experience. Her recent advisory work includes extensive advice on derisking issues, such as buy outs, buy ins and enhanced transfer value exercises.
Lesley is acknowledged as a pensions expert by Chambers Guide to the Legal Profession and The Legal 500 directory. In 2009 and again in 2012, Lesley was featured in the Financial News 100 Most Influential Women in Finance. She is highly recommended by the Legal 500 (2012), which said “she has a gut feeling for when the client wants solutions or obstacles”. Chambers Directory (2013) said of her “she is extremely knowledgeable, provides clear advice, is proactive at keeping us up to date on legal and regulatory matters and provides a highly professional service in a user-friendly manner” and of her team “It is this pension team's service mindedness, well-prepared advice, ability to challenge the advice of other lawyers and commercial reality that respondents value”.
Lesley is a member of the Association of Pension Lawyers and has served on both its education and seminars and main committees. She is also a member of the NAPF City and Eastern Group, the International Pensions and Employee Benefits Lawyers Association, the CBI Pensions Working Group and the NAPF Pensions Panel.
Lesley is a regular speaker and write of articles. She has contributed articles to and been quoted in a wide range of pension publications, including Pensions Week, Pensions Age, Pensions Management, Professional Pensions and the OPDU Report.