7 days

7 Days is a weekly round up of developments in pensions, normally published on Monday afternoons. We collate this information from key industry sources, such as the DWP, HMRC and TPR.

In this 7 Days

FCA statement on reviewing DB transfer redress guidance

On 1 September 2021, the FCA published a statement confirming that it intends to start a periodic review by the end of 2021 of its transfer redress guidance which sets out how firms should calculate redress for unsuitable DB pension transfers.

The FCA first published its transfer redress guidance in 2017 and committed in the accompanying Feedback Statement to review the guidance at least every 4 years. This guidance was updated in March 2021 to reflect changes to the way in which RPI inflation will be calculated from 2030 (see 7 Days).

The statement also sets out the FCA’s expectations of firms while the review is ongoing, including clarifying how they should be applying or interpreting current guidance.

Government response to Committee recommendations on public sector pensions

On 2 September 2021, the Government responded to the Public Accounts Committee’s report on public service pensions, agreeing with most of its recommendations including that “[HMT] must prioritise work to quickly resolve the challenges presented by the McCloud judgment and cost control mechanism, in order to give certainty to scheme members and employers”. The Government will update the Committee again in six months.

In its response, the Government confirms it is focusing on completing implementation of the public service pension reforms, and transferring members into the reformed schemes from 2022 through the Public Service Pensions and Judicial Offices Bill 2021 (see 7 Days).

HMRC guidance for taxable and non-taxable trusts

As part of the UK’s implementation of the Fifth Money Laundering Directive (“MLD5”), new rules were introduced in October 2020 extending the scope of the HMRC’s trust register (see 7 Days).

On 1 September 2021, HMRC updated its guidance, confirming which trusts are to be registered and which are not. Specific exclusions apply to registered pension schemes for example, but certain trust-based unregistered pension schemes, such as employer financed retirement benefit schemes (“EFRBSs”) and section 615 schemes, are amongst those that will need to register.

HMRC has confirmed that the new Trust Registration Service (“TRS”) is now open for non-taxpaying trust registrations. The deadline for registrations for non-taxable trusts in existence on or after 6 October 2020 is 1 September 2022. Non-taxable trusts created after 1 September 2022 must register within 90 days. The deadline for notifying changes to registered details has been extended from 30 days to 90 days.

PPF confirms extension of levy payment window

On 1 September 2021, the PPF confirmed it will continue to support levy payers impacted by COVID-19 by offering up to 90 days to pay their 2021/22 levy bill without interest being charged. For a second year (see 7 Days), schemes and sponsoring employers may apply for the payment extension online within 28 days of receiving their levy invoice. Schemes or sponsoring employers who need longer than 90 days can make an application under the existing repayment plan process.