Mark Simpson

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COVID-19: Yet More Relief, and More Certainty, for EMI Option Holders

On Tuesday, 21 July 2020, the Government announced further good news for companies operating enterprise management incentive (EMI) share option schemes that will allow them to continue to grant new options to individuals who: have been furloughed under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), or have taken unpaid leave, or have had their working hours … Continue Reading

Taxation of UK Termination Payments: Don’t be an April Fool

With most employer’s minds currently focused on the upcoming changes to the IR35 regime, it’s important they do not forget about forthcoming updates to the tax treatment of termination payments which are also due to take effect next month. Employer’s NIC on Termination payments Currently, the only tax on termination payments made to employees to … Continue Reading

IR35 Reforms – A Taxing Time for Pension Trustees and Corporate Sponsors

The off-payroll tax rules (commonly known as IR35) are changing on 6 April 2020.  Pension trustees who have members of their board paid for their services through a personal service company (PSC) may need to start making those payments net of income tax and NICs under PAYE.  Although the rules have not been finalised (and HMRC … Continue Reading

VAT on pension costs – some good news!

It’s a while since we last commented on VAT on pensions but we return with some good news which HMRC have quietly slipped out in updated content to the VAT Manual. Back in 2014, following the PPG case, HMRC proposed withdrawing their practice of allowing employers to recover VAT on charges on administration costs for … Continue Reading

Election 2017: May still right (and a little bit left) on track for victory in June

The Conservative manifesto, ‘Forward, Together’, unveiled late last week by Theresa May, was notable rather less for reiterating commitments to traditional, small government, Conservative principles of ‘low tax’ and ‘better regulation’ and rather more for its embrace of social inclusion, identifying a “need [for] a partnership between the individual and the wider nation, between private … Continue Reading

Employee shareholder status

The UK government has announced the abolition of the tax benefits of employee shareholder status in today’s Autumn Statement. The change applies to shares issued on or after 1 December 2016. Since there has to be a minimum 7 clear days notice between the individual employee being advised on the implications of employee shareholder status … Continue Reading

UK pensions VAT – yet another update

Keen readers will recall the long-running saga of the correct treatment of VAT incurred by employers on pension fund costs. Following rulings by the ECJ, HMRC had determined that it needed to change existing UK practice. In particular, this affected defined benefit schemes where HMRC had allowed employers to recover some, but not all, of … Continue Reading

What’s in a name?

The UK’s National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has rebranded itself as the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA). Why the change? The PLSA says it better reflects changes to the way retirement provision is made, with people working longer and funding retirement in new ways, as well as having new rights to access their … Continue Reading

Summer Budget – pension tax changes

As widely trailed, the UK government has confirmed in the Summer Budget on 8 July that pensions tax relief for those earning more than £150,000 will be severely restricted from April 2016 – relief will be tapered to a minimum of £10,000 a year. In addition, the government announced that it is launching a consultation … Continue Reading

VAT and UK pensions schemes – the saga continues

HMRC has now issued further guidance on the implications of the CJEU rulings in ATP and PPG, two cases that dealt with the VAT treatment of costs incurred by pension funds. Clarification of HMRC’s approach has been eagerly awaited, following consultation with a range of industry bodies. So where do things stand now? Defined contribution … Continue Reading

VAT on UK pension costs – a welcome respite?

Back in February, HMRC issued Brief 06/14 outlining their response to the European Court decision in the PPG case. This promised a change in the long accepted practice of allowing employers to recover a proportion of VAT incurred on the administration of defined benefit pension schemes – the so-called 70/30 rule. HMRC planned to scrap … Continue Reading

UK Budget 2014 – employment tax

The Budget did not contain much that was new in relation to employment tax issues. Many of the measures had been previously announced. However, there has been further information published in the past week and today in relation to a number of changes, including revisions to the legislation on dual employment contracts and further guidance on … Continue Reading

UK Budget 2014 – all quiet on the share plans front

Today’s Budget was notable for the absence of announcements relating to employee share plans. So, despite the calls for it to be abolished, employee shareholder status lives to fight another day. This is perhaps not surprising given the enthusiasm George Osborne showed for the concept when it was first announced. As we have commented, ESS … Continue Reading

New UK Executive Remuneration Resource Centre

We have changed the way you can access information about UK executive remuneration through the blog site. The Remuneration Tracker document has been replaced by a UK Executive Remuneration Resource Centre. The Resource Centre has all the information and links that you could find in the old Tracker document but we have taken the opportunity to … Continue Reading

VAT on UK pension fund costs – HMRC give and take

The VAT treatment of UK pension fund management costs has become a bit of a minefield in recent years, with a number of long-running court cases impacting on employers and pension fund trustees. In the latest twist, HMRC have now issued a Brief in response to the EU Court’s ruling in the Dutch PPG case. HMRC have conceded … Continue Reading