Current Issues April 2019
01 Apr 2019 - Estimated reading time: 12 minutes
Excerpts from this month's articles (to read more please download our latest Current Issues using the link below):
DB annual funding statement 2019
The Pensions Regulator has published the 2019 edition of its annual funding statement for defined benefit (DB) schemes. It provides guidance on the Regulator’s expectations of trustees and sponsoring employers who are conducting valuation exercises at dates in the year to 21 September 2019, and what responses they might anticipate from it in return.
Government confirms CDC plans
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has reaffirmed its commitment to making the legislative changes necessary for the establishment of collective defined contribution (CDC) pension schemes. Its initial focus is to permit Royal Mail PLC and the Communication Workers Union to proceed with a new scheme for postal workers ‘as soon as Parliamentary time allows’; work could then begin on extending the provisions to encompass variants such as master-trust and decumulation-only schemes.
New standards for professional trustees
Professional occupational pension scheme trustees will soon be expected to apply for accreditation in order to demonstrate that they meet standards established by the Professional Trustee Standards Working Group (PTSWG). Whilst the standards will have no legal status, they do have the support of the Pensions Regulator, which is represented on the PTSWG.
Introducing the Money & Pensions Service
The new ‘single financial guidance body’ will be known as the Money and Pensions Service. Scheme booklets and other member communications will need to be updated to reflect the change.
Trustees’ regard for employer’s interests not a fiduciary duty
A High Court judge has ruled that pension trustees have no fiduciary duties toward their scheme’s sponsoring employer. So far as we are aware, this is the first time that a court has expressly ruled out the existence of such a duty.
Finance Act 2019
With effect from the 2019/20 tax year, legislation will widen the tax exemption for employer premiums to policies providing death benefits, outside of registered pension schemes, in respect of their employees.
New private-sector ‘off-payroll working’ rules could touch on pensions
Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is seeking views on proposals for bringing private sector ‘off-payroll working’ rules into line with those of the public sector, with effect from 6 April 2020. As part of the change, HMRC is considering ways to provide relief on pension contributions.
HMRC newsletters March 2019
During the month of March 2019, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) published the 43rd and 44th editions of its Countdown Bulletins series, devoted to the abolition of salary related contracting out. It also issued Pension Schemes Newsletter 108.