Developments in Employee Benefits law and practice

08 April 2019

New HMRC Regulations

Pension Schemes (Information Requirements—Repayment of Overseas Transfer Charge) Regulations 2019

These regulations (SI 2019/774) make provision to set out the detail relating to a claim for the repayment of the overseas transfer charge on transfers of UK pension savings to qualifying recognised overseas pension schemes (QROPS). The Regulations come into force on 25 April 2019. Provisions are made to:

  • Specify the conditions for making a claim for repayment and the particulars required to be included when making a claim
  • Specify the procedure for processing the claim on the basis of the information provided. It also specifies that a repayment reference number must be issued where the charge is repayable as well as the obligations on the claimant in these circumstanced
  • Make provision for an appeal to a decision to refuse the claim
  • Specify to whom the repayment must be made, including when circumstances have changed since the charge was paid. It also provides for the treatment of the repayment of the charge

Pension Schemes (Information Requirements—Qualifying Overseas Pension Schemes, Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes and Corresponding Relief) (Amendment) Regulations 2019

These regulations (SI 2019/773) make amendments to align the existing information that claimants will need to provide to HMRC when making a claim for repayment of the charge, with those requirements in the Repayment Regulations to prevent a conflict in the rules in the UK. The Regulations come into force on 25 April 2019. Amendments are made to the Pension Schemes (Information Requirements—Qualifying Overseas Pension Schemes, Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes and Corresponding Relief) Regulations 2006, SI 2006/208 to:

  • SI 2006/208, reg 3AE which prescribes the information to be provided by the member to a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) in relation to onward transfers
  • SI 2006/208, reg 3AH which provides for the accounting of the overseas transfer charge on onward transfers
  • SI 2006/208, reg 3AI which provides for assessments of unpaid overseas transfer charge on onward transfers
  • SI 2006/208, reg 3AL which provides for claims for repayment of the charge on subsequent excluding events

Benefit and Pension Rates 2019

Benefit and pension rates for 2019/2020 have been published here.

MPs call for action on executive pay

Amber Rudd, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, made the following statement in advance of publishing the Government response to its earlier consultation on the Pensions Dashboard –

Government remains committed to ensuring the individual is in control of their data and is conscious of the need for pace in order to deliver dashboards. Our priority is to ensure that information is presented securely, in a clear and simple format to support consumers with their retirement planning. The response to the consultation on dashboards includes:

  • A commitment to bring forward legislation at the earliest opportunity to compel all pension providers to make consumers’ data available to them through a dashboard;
  • An expectation that the majority of schemes will be ready to ‘go live’ with their data within a three to four year window;
  • Confirmation that State Pension information will be included as soon as possible; and
  • That dashboards will help to reconnect people with ‘lost’ pension pots, benefitting savers and providers.

A crucial entity in taking this forward will be the industry delivery group; made up of stakeholders from across the industry, consumer groups, regulators and government who will be accountable to the Single Financial Guidance Body board. We anticipate the delivery group should be fully operational by the end of the summer. The priorities for the delivery group in 2019 are to create a clear strategy for delivering the digital architecture, design a robust governance and security framework and to work with industry on their readiness to provide data via dashboards.

It is my firm belief that the pensions industry is best placed to develop and deliver dashboards. However, there is a role for Government in facilitating industry’s delivery of dashboards which work for consumers and put people in control of their data.

Pensions dashboards can be an enabler for a real step-change across the sector to modernise the way it communicates with its members. They also provide an opportunity to build trust with consumers, ensuring they can access their pensions information in a convenient way.

TPR Master Trusts Report 2019

The Pensions Regulator has published its regular monthly report about the master trust market. As at 31 March 2019, 27 applications have been submitted for authorisation and a decision is yet to be reached, and three schemes have been authorised.

Latest statement from Pension Protection Fund following Hampshire ruling

“The first group of PPF members who we’ve assessed as most significantly affected by the European Court of Justice’s ruling have from today started receiving increased benefits. These members have had their benefits adjusted by the long service cap (LSC).

Later this month we will make the first increased payments to the most significantly affected FAS members. PPF and FAS members receive their regular monthly payments at different times in the month, which is why the FAS members will receive their payments later in April.

We’ll make increased payments in May to the rest of the LSC pensioners where the LSC took them below the 50% minimum, provided we have received the information we need from them. If there will be any delay in making increased payments, we’ll contact members individually.”

Brexit update

Theresa May has submitted a request to the EU for an extension of Article 50 until 30 June. She also announced earlier in the week that she would hold talks with opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn.

HMRC has published its guidance on Social security contributions for UK and EU workers if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Contact:

John W. Wilson LLB(Hons) FPMI ACII, Head of Research| Email: john_wilson@jltgroup.com