Changes to SSAS to stop pension scams
To open a new SSAS scheme the sponsoring employer must give consent to the scheme and not be classed as a dormant company. These changes are new measures to stop SSAS pensions being used in pension scams.
At the end of August the Government produced a consultation response to Pension scams. This can be viewed here
It states that ‘The government therefore proposes to require all new pension scheme registrations to be made through an active company, except in legitimate circumstances, where HMRC will be given discretion to register schemes with a dormant sponsoring employer. This requirement will extend to existing pension schemes if they are registered with a dormant sponsoring employer, with the same discretion so that HMRC can decide not to de-register a scheme in legitimate circumstances. This change will be legislated for in a Finance Bill in 2017. The existing right of appeal if HMRC rejects a scheme registration will apply to this new requirement.’
They also state that the sponsoring employer must give consent to become a sponsoring employer of an occupational scheme.
This consent could be achieved through an additional check by HMRC as part of the application process, and a declaration by the person setting up the pension scheme that this consent had been received.