Following the grant of Royal Assent on 17 December 2014 to the Taxation of Pensions Act 2014, on 19 December 2014, HMRC has published three sets of draft regulations relating to flexible pension access. The consultation period ends on 16 January 2015.
An outline of the provisions of the three sets of regulations is provided below:
The draft Registered Pension Schemes (Provision of Information) (Amendment) Regulations 2015
These will introduce further provision of information requirements, including an obligation on scheme administrators to supply to a deceased member's personal representatives information about any lifetime allowance charge that arises where death benefits are designated for drawdown from unused uncrystallised funds.
The draft Overseas Pension Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2015
These regulations will amend the requirements that an overseas pension scheme must meet to qualify for UK tax relief in respect of UK-resident members or to count as a QROPS.
Among the changes, the requirement that an overseas scheme must contain a rule ensuring at least 70 per cent of UK tax-relieved funds are used to provide an income for life for the member will be abolished to align the regime for overseas schemes with the new flexibilities.
The draft Registered Pension Schemes (Transfer of Sums and Assets) (Amendment) Regulations 2015
These will enact anti-avoidance measures concerning the transfer of annuities. Broadly speaking, individuals who have already taken an authorised annuity before 6 April 2015 will be prevented from transferring to a new annuity after that date in order to take advantage of the new flexibilities.