A Bill intended to help occupational pensions schemes meet their duty to equalise guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) rights for men and women has cleared the Commons.

MPs gave their backing to the Pension Schemes (Conversion of Guaranteed Minimum Pensions) Bill, which would clarify and streamline the primary legislation on GMP conversion.

Opening the third reading debate for her Bill, independent MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton West Margaret Ferrier said: “The Bill will help occupational pensions schemes correct a basic issue of men and women being treated differently in contracted-out defined benefit occupational pension schemes.

“Because of the impact of having a guaranteed minimum pension, that will help enable pension schemes to meet their legal obligations and to ensure that people do not receive less pension income than they would have done if they had been the opposite sex.”

Conservative Claire Coutinho (East Surrey) welcomed the changes, saying it is a “long overdue step towards equality between the sexes when it comes to occupational pensions”.

Confirming Government support, work and pensions minister Guy Opperman said “it is this Government’s proposal to transform United Kingdom pensions”, making them “safer, better and greener”.

He added: “This is an utterly vital piece of legislation that addresses everything from survivor benefits to reforms in relation to HMRC and the need to get proper equalisation and there is no question, just to be utterly clear, all parties will benefit from this.”

The Bill received an unopposed third reading and will return to the Lords for further scrutiny.

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