View more on these topics

ICAS: Questions remain over impact of Scottish independence on pensions

The Scottish government has failed to answer key questions about the impact independence would have on UK pensions, accountancy trade body ICAS has warned.

A referendum asking whether Scotland should remain as part of the UK will be held on 18 September. The prospect of Scottish independence has led to uncertainty about the impact it will have on financial services, particularly pensions.

In its white paper setting out the implications of a “yes” vote, the Scottish goverment set out plans to introduce a £160 a week single-tier state pension for future retirees and create a Scottish version of the National Employment Savings Trust to support automatic enrolment.

However, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland says it remains unclear who would be responsible for funding “cross border” defined benefit schemes which have a deficit. Under EU law, cross border schemes must be fully funded.

It says the three-year transition period proposed by the Scottish government for schemes to become fully funded is “wholly insufficient”.

The trade body also raises concerns about the feasibility of an independent Scotland sharing the Pension Protection Fund with the UK while also creating its own pensions regulator, and warns calculating state pension entitlements at the point of independence will create “additional complexity”.

ICAS executive director, technical policy and practice support David Wood says: “Important questions remain on how legacy issues will be resolved and new arrangements will be implemented.”

Worldwide Financial Planning IFA Nick McBreen says: “It is a huge concern that there remain serious unanswered questions about the impact of Scottish independence this close to the referendum.”


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm