Tax / Money purchase annual allowance pension warning

HMRC has issued guidance only two weeks before the self assessment deadline to help taxpayers work out when the pensions money purchase annual allowance (MPAA) applies and whether tax is payable on pension savings

Accounting / Winton: use and abuse of pre-packs to drop pension liabilities

Anne-Marie Winton, partner at ARC Pensions Law LLP, examines the pre-pack administration of publisher Johnston Press, which involved the abandoning of £109m in pension liabilities, and asks whether regulators should have greater control of this practice 

Insight / £60bn spike in defined benefit pension deficit

A survey of 5,600 of the UK’s corporate defined benefit pension funds shows that the deficit rose by £60bn to £290bn over the course of December 2018, reversing gains made in 2018 and indicating growing uncertainty over Brexit

Insight / Ban on pensions cold-calling comes into force

This week marks the introduction of the government’s ban on pensions cold calling, with unsolicited calls to individuals about their pension made illegal from 9 January and potential fines of up to £500,000 for those flouting the regulations

Tax / Scottish income tax catches out higher rate taxpayers

Pension saving may soften triple whammy for higher rate Scottish taxpayers with salary sacrifice reducing tax liability while higher pension contributions can offset higher rate child benefit clawback, explains Kay Ingram, director of public policy at LEBC Group     

Insight / Pension funding spikes in turbulent year

Latest figures show that the funding position of all UK private sector defined benefit (DB) pension schemes has improved in the 12 months from December 2017, but political and economic pressures affected business confidence

Insight / DWP to trial auto enrolled pensions for self-employed

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is seeking input on its plans to develop and test options designed to encourage self-employed people to save for short, medium and long-term financial goals, including a pension

Insight / DWP to consult on pension dashboards

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is to consult on proposals for new, free ‘pensions dashboards’ which would allow people to access their information from most pension schemes in one place online for the first time, following a letter from Frank Field MP

Insight / Investment Association tightens guidance on exec pay

The Investment Association (IA) says FTSE 350 companies need to do more to respond to concerns over executive pay rates, or face further shareholder rebellions on remuneration, and has published new guidelines for best practice

Tax / Calls to relieve EU pensions of VAT burden

The relief of pension fund participants from unevenly-applied VAT charges on contracted management services has been called for by an EU pension representative and a Brussels-based advocacy group, who criticise the lack of 'political willingness'

Insight / Government begins CDC pension consultation

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is consulting on proposals for collective defined contribution (CDC) pension schemes, first outlined at Budget 2018, which allow contributions to be pooled and invested to give members a target benefit level

Tax / Probate fees to rise to £6K for largest estates

Plans to hike the cost of probate with the introduction of banded fees will see estates valued at over £1m paying £4,000 in fees from April 2019

Insight / 40% gender difference in pension pots

The gender pension gap is 39.5%, twice the level of the gender pay gap, with women receiving on average £7000 less than their male counterparts, according to research from the union Prospect

Insight / First fine for accountant under TPR enrolment rules

The accountant of a London cafe has been ordered to pay £6,857 after he admitted falsely claiming to The Pensions Regulator (TPR) that staff had been enrolled into pensions

Tax / Ingram: what the Budget means for pension savers

Kay Ingram, director of public policy at LEBC, discusses the pensions aspects of the Autumn Budget, including an increase to the lifetime allowance and the introduction of collective defined contributions pensions