The German government has put forward a draft regulation requiring pension funds to join the pension dashboard Digitalen Rentenübersicht.

According to the draft law, pension funds will start to register with the Central Office for the Digital Pension Overview – the Zentrale Stelle für die Digitale Rentenübersicht (ZfDR), a division of the Deutschen Rentenversicherung Bund – by 31 March, stating the number of pension claims.

In a second step, pension schemes will have to design a functioning interface at ZfDR by 30 September for data exchange on the dashboard, notifying ZfDR if their interface is ready before that date, according to the draft regulation.

In a further step, the interfaces are tested by ZfDR and the pension institutions, with the deadline for the mandatory connection to the ZfDR and the pension dashboard set for 31 December this year, according to the law.

From 31 December, pension funds must be able to transfer data to the Central Office for the Digital Pension Overview.

A number of pension institutions has already joined the pension dashboard voluntarily, and many are in the process of joining it, according to the government.

The law introducing the digital pension overview – the Pension Overview Act – of February 2021, specified that pension funds are required to report to the ZfDR from a certain date onwards, in order to connect to the dashboard. This rule applies to pension funds required to submit reports at least annually.

Users can authenticate themselves on the dashboard using an online ID function (eID), creating a profile and entering their tax identification number (IdNr). In a second step, the ZfDR checks the data and sends it to the pension fund.

Setting the deadline to join the dashboard will help members have an overview of their individual pension entitlements in the future, it added.

However, for reasons of proportionality, the draft regulation put forward by the government requires only pension funds with more than 1,000 pension claims, not yet in the payout phase, to be connected to the dashboard.

Stephan Kühnlenz, director of investments and retirement at Stiftung Warentest, said: “It is important that the Digitale Rentenübersicht will take over as many retirement products as possible, also long-term fund savings plans, so that people can have an idea of pension entitlements, and how big will gaps be in terms of pension provisions until the end of the saving phase, and eventually close [those] gaps.”

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