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Pension reviews plan single taxation regime

The Inland Revenue and the Department for Work & Pensions are believed to be planning a single tax regime to span occupational and personal schemes as part of a major pension overhaul.

The move is likely to form part of Alan Pickering&#39s DWP review to simplify private pension legislation and the Revenue&#39s review into streamlining the tax system on occupational schemes.

Pickering is finalising his report and will be publishing recommendations in June.

Details of the Inland Revenue&#39s plans have been kept secret but the two teams are working closely together and recommendations from both reviews will form a single package of radical pension reform.

The personal pension tax system is set to take precedence in the reviews&#39 recommendations, with proposals for contribution limits and earnings&#39 caps to be scrapped. Some rules will be brought in to limit abuses to the system.

The reviews&#39 teams are understood to be wrestling with how far the proposals could be introduced retrospectively.

Pickering says: “I know what I am planning to say, I am just finding the right words to say it. We have been working particularly closely with the Revenue. What is published from the teams will be two parts of the same package. The recommendations will be radical and workable.”

Scottish Equitable pensions development director Stewart Ritchie says: “Pickering and the Revenue do seem to be cross-referencing – we are in danger of having some joinedup thinking from the Government for once. We think they will come up with some radical proposals.”

Eversheds senior partner Robin Ellison says: “We could live with one tax system but with a couple of rules to limit abuse. I think the Revenue is sympathetic to this idea and could well say yes to it.”


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