The Government has moved to close a loophole which could have allowed pensioners to almost double their tax-free cash after A-Day.Under the 2004 Finance Act, people taking benefits in a form known as a scheme pension would have been entitled to up to 45 per cent tax-free cash, rather than the usual 25 per cent limit. Scottish Life head of pensions Steve Bee says this situation could have resulted in pensioners taking out poor or unsuitable annuities in order to access the maximum tax-free cash. Bee says the loophole threatened to cause confusion in the market as pensioners would be presented with a bewildering array of tax-free cash options based on their age and the type of annuity they took out. But HM Revenue & Customs says it has heeded warnings from the pension industry and is proposing to alter the calculation of tax-free cash to ensure a standard 25 per cent limit. The changes will be introduced in the 2006 Finance Bill and will come into force on A-Day. Scottish Life head of communications Alasdair Buchanan says: “I am pleased that HMRC plans to make this change before it is too late but it is incredible that this was allowed to happen in the first place.”
Bankhall joint chief executives Paul Hogarth and Simon Taylor have quit, with managing director Peter Mann taking over with immediate effect. Hogarth remains as strat- egic marketing consultant at Bankhall while Taylor is leaving to pursue other financial services business opportunities, expected to relate to the mortgage and general insurance sectors. Hogarth and Taylor, two […]
This week Emma Lunn, freelance finance journalist
Personal bankruptcies have hit record levels, according to Department of Trade and Industry figures, In the three months to June, 15,394 individuals declared bankruptcy, an increase of 12 per cent on the previous three months and up by 37 per cent on the same period last year.
Gay consumers could easily misunderstand the new civil partnership law and the financial implications for same sex couples according to Citizens Advice.The CAB says the law, instated on December 5 this year, is misunderstood as live-in same-sex couples might still be affected even if they do not register their relationship.The civil partnership law gives gay […]
Vincent Chailley, CIO of H2O Asset Management, discusses the key investment factors in 2016, including volatility, the disconnection between central banks and its implications on markets, as well as opportunities that may exist for investors.
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A decade ago, I went through the pain of switching utility providers. Deterred by a catalogue of errors, it is only recently, after a house move, that I tried again. I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was. It has made me think about how complex and expensive it is to switch in financial […]
It has never been more important to encourage saving. But advisers know only too well how challenging the complexities of the UK savings and pensions landscape make it for people. Any trends towards simplification would be welcome, but unfortunately recent developments have moved in the opposite direction. Take Isas, for example. Their simplicity has always […]
The FCA has confirmed it will consider if there needs to be better guidance around when it and the Financial Ombudsman Service can share information ahead of the FOS making its final decision. In a Complaints Commissioner final report, published on its website yesterday, commissioner Antony Townsend invited the FCA and FOS to discuss when […]