Aries monitors every development in new and proposed legislation and official guidance.   Clients are kept up to date via the website, email alerts and tweets.   Aries serves as a one-stop source of intelligence on everything that is going on and coming up.   Aries doesn't miss anything of significance.

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This week HMRC has laid two new SIs which further flesh out the impact of the dramatic changes to the overseas pension transfers regime introduced a year ago.

The Pension Schemes (Application of UK Provisions to Relevant Non-UK Schemes) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/373) amend The Pension Schemes (Application of UK Provisions to Relevant Non-UK Schemes) Regulations 2006 (SI 2006/207), in relation to calculating the amount to be charged

to UK tax in respect of a payment by a relevant non-UK pension scheme (a category which includes QROPS)* which is referable to a member's UK tax-relieved fund. The SI also sets out how payments out of those funds reduce the amount that is subject to UK tax charges.

    *(5) A scheme is a relevant non-UK scheme if–
    (a) relief from tax has been given in respect of contributions paid under the scheme by virtue of Schedule 33

(overseas pension schemes: migrant member relief),
(b) relief from tax has been so given at any time after 5th April 2006 under double tax arrangements,
(c) a member of the scheme has been, or members of the scheme have been, exempt from liability to tax by virtue of section 307 of ITEPA 2003 (exemption for provision made by employer for retirement or death benefit) in respect of
. . .

16 Mar 2018  

Pension Schemes Newsletter 96 has arrived this week and the topic of relief at source again features heavily.

There is the usual reminder about how to submit the annual return of individual information for 2017/18 onwards. HMRC can provide 'controlled access' to the residency status look up service this month, before it goes 'fully live' from April 2018.

On the topic of excess relief, HMRC points out that, for interim claims for tax months

ending on or after 5 April 2018, the Registered Pension Schemes (Relief at Source)(Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/150) introduce a 90 day deadline for scheme administrators to give HMRC information about excess relief claimed and repay the excess relief to HMRC. It has published new guidance on how to report and pay back excess relief claimed through relief at source. There is also a spreadsheet which can be used to submit the information in the correct format.

There is no need to include information about Scottish starter rate taxpayers who pay tax at 19%, but who have received relief at source at 20%, when telling HMRC about excess relief claimed.

Form APSS 105 has been updated accordingly. For interim claims ending on or before 5 April 2018, combined details of both UK and Scottish taxpayers can be included in Part 2. For interim claims . . .

09 Mar 2018  


Guaranteed Minimum Pensions Increase Order 2018

With effect from 6 April 2018, SI 2018/279 specifies 3.0% as the percentage by which that part of any guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) attributable to earnings factors for the tax years 1988-89 to 1996-97 and payable by contracted-out, defined benefit occupational pension schemes is to be increased.

As per section 109(3) of the Pension Schemes Act 1993, the percentage to be specified is the actual percentage increase in the general level of prices in the period under review or 3 per cent, whichever is less. The increase in the Consumer Prices Index for the 12 months ending 30 September 2017 was 3.0%.

Section 148 Order 2018

The Social Security Revaluation of Earnings Factors Order 2018 (SI 2018/271) -

the "s.148 Order" or "Revaluation Order" - has been laid thanks to a 3.0% increase in the general level of earnings (as measured by the Average Weekly Earnings Index, non-seasonally adjusted, including bonuses) over the 12 months to September 2017.

This Order therefore provides for earnings factors for 2017/18 to be increased by that percentage and for earnings factors . . .

08 Mar 2018  

Simultaneously this week the DWP published official responses to four separate consultations and laid regulations following each. We report here on

  • The Occupational Pension Schemes (Administration and Disclosure) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/233)
  • The Occupational Pension Schemes (Employer Debt and Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/237)
  • The Occupational Pension Schemes (Preservation of Benefit and Charges and Governance) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/240)
  • The Contracting-out (Transfer and Transfer Payment) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/234)

  • Charging Up

    Section 44 of the Pensions Act 2014 introduced a statutory duty for the Sec of State to make regulations requiring

    trustees or managers of relevant money purchase occupational pension schemes to
    (a) publish scheme transaction costs and administration charges; and
    (b) provide information to members and recognised trade unions, on request, about certain funds in which their money is invested.

    The DWP launched a consultation on draft proposals in October 2017 . . .

    02 Mar 2018  

    As flagged in PSN 95, on Wednesday this week HMRC issued another newsletter on relief at source for the Scottish Rate of Income Tax (SRIT). This immediately followed the Scottish Parliament's confirmation on 20 February 2018 of the new Scottish Income Tax rates and bands to apply from 6 April 2018.

    For the tax year 2018/19, members of pension schemes who get pension tax relief through the 'net pay' mechanism will receive relief, by default, at members'

    marginal rate of tax, including the new and newly increased Scottish rates. For members of schemes which use the relief at source (RAS) mechanism, the process will not be so smooth.

    Administrators of a pension scheme using RAS will continue to claim tax relief at the rate of 20% for members who are Scottish taxpayers.

    For pension scheme members who are Scottish taxpayers liable to income tax at

    no more than Scottish starter rate of 19%, or who pay no tax, current tax rules will continue to apply. Scheme administrators will continue to claim relief at 20% in respect of these individuals, and HMRC will not recover the difference between the Scottish starter and Scottish basic rate.

    Pension scheme members who are Scottish taxpayers liable to income tax at the Scottish intermediate rate of 21% . . .

    23 Feb 2018