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Government consults on new draft pension regulations

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The UK Government has today announced proposals, which will simplify the Occupational and Personal Pensions Contracting-out legislation. Members of the Pensions Industry and other interested bodies have been asked to comment on the consultation paper and draft regulations, which outline the proposals in detail.

The draft regulations contain a number of amendments designed to simplify the regulation of occupational pension schemes. Among other things they reduce the amount of information that schemes are required to provide routinely to the Inland Revenue, contain easements with regard to very small amounts of accrued pension, and introduce flexibility – for example to allow transfers to overseas schemes.

The Pensions Minister Jeff Rooker said, “We have listened to the pensions industry, which has campaigned for simplification of this legislation. We are also acutely aware of the concerns of scheme members about the security of pension funds. Legislation covering Contracting-out is complex and in some areas duplicates provision covering occupational pensions in general. These proposals remove some of the administrative requirements and also gives schemes flexibility without risking the security of members benefits.”

“They are a part of our objective to simplify the regulation of occupational pension schemes and bring real cost savings to the schemes.”

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