Amendments proposed to the Pensions Bill - continued House of Commons

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Categories of pension scheme

   

Mr Secretary Smith

NC25

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1)   Section 1 of the Pension Schemes Act 1993 (c.48) (categories of pension scheme) is amended as follows.

    (2)   The provisions of the section shall become subsection (1) of the section.

    (3)   In that subsection, for the definitions of "occupational pension scheme" and "personal pension scheme" substitute—

             ""occupational pension scheme" means a pension scheme—

          (a) that—

          (i) for the purpose of providing benefits to, or in respect of, people with service in employments of a description, or

          (ii) for that purpose and also for the purpose of providing benefits to, or in respect of, other people,

          is established by, or by persons who include, a person to whom subsection (2) applies, and

          (b) that has its main administration in the United Kingdom or outside the member States;

             "personal pension scheme" means a pension scheme that—

          (a) is not an occupational pension scheme, and

          (b) is established by a person within any of the paragraphs of section 144(1) of the Finance Act 2004;".

          (4)   After that subsection insert—

              "(2)   This subsection applies—

              (a) where people in employments of the description concerned are employed by someone, to a person who employs such people,

              (b) to a person in an employment of that description, and

              (c) to a person representing interests of a description framed so as to include—

              (i) interests of persons who employ people in employments of the description mentioned in paragraph (a), or

              (ii) interests of people in employments of that description.

              (3)   For the purposes of subsection (2), if a person is in an employment of the description concerned by reason of holding an office (including an elective office) and is entitled to remuneration for holding it, the person responsible for paying the remuneration shall be taken to employ the office-holder.

              (4)   In the definition in subsection (1) of "occupational pension scheme", the reference to a description includes a description framed by reference to an employment being of any of two or more kinds.

              (5)   In subsection (1) "pension scheme" (except in the phrases "occupational pension scheme", "personal pension scheme" and "public service pension scheme") means a scheme or other arrangements, comprised in one or more instruments or agreements, having or capable of having effect so as to provide benefits to or in respect of people—

              (a) on retirement,

              (b) on having reached a particular age, or

              (c) on termination of service in an employment.

              (6)   The power of the Treasury under section 144(4) of the Finance Act 2004 (power to amend sections 144 and 145) includes power consequentially to amend—

              (a) paragraph (a) of the definition in subsection (1) of "personal pension scheme", and

              (b) any provision in force in Northern Ireland corresponding to that paragraph.".'.


      UK-based occupational pension scheme to be trust with effective rules

         

      Mr Secretary Smith

      NC26

      To move the following Clause:—

          '(1)   Subsections (2) and (3) apply to an occupational pension scheme that has its main administration in the United Kingdom.

          (2)   If the scheme is not established under irrevocable trusts, the trustees or managers of the scheme must secure that no funding payment is accepted.

          (3)   If the rules stipulating—

          (a) the benefits under the scheme, and

          (b) any conditions subject to which benefits under the scheme accrue,

        are not in force, or if those rules are not set out in writing, the trustees or managers of the scheme must secure that no funding payment is accepted.

          (4)   Subsection (2) or (3) does not apply to an occupational pension scheme if it is a prescribed scheme or a scheme of a prescribed description.

          (5)   Section 10 of the Pensions Act 1995 (c.26) (civil penalties) applies to a trustee or manager of an occupational pension scheme that has its main administration in the United Kingdom if—

          (a) subsection (2) or (3) requires the trustees or managers of the scheme to secure that no funding payment is accepted,

          (b) a funding payment is accepted, and

          (c) the trustee or manager has failed to take all reasonable steps to secure that no funding payment is accepted.

          (6)   In this section "funding payment", in relation to a scheme, means a payment made to the scheme to fund benefits for, or in respect of, any or all of the members.'.


Non-EC occupational pension scheme to be trust with UK-resident trustee

   

Mr Secretary Smith

NC27

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1)   Subsections (2) and (3) apply to an occupational pension scheme that has its main administration outside the member States.

    (2)   An employer based in any part of the United Kingdom may cause a contribution to be paid to the scheme in respect of an employee (whether or not employed in the United Kingdom) only if the conditions in subsection (4) are satisfied at the time of payment.

    (3)   An employer based outside the United Kingdom may cause a contribution to be paid to the scheme in respect of an employee employed in the United Kingdom only if the conditions in subsection (4) are satisfied at the time of payment.

    (4)   Those conditions are—

      (a) that the scheme is established under irrevocable trusts, and

      (b) that a trustee of the scheme is resident in the United Kingdom.

    (5)   Subsection (2) or (3) does not apply to an occupational pension scheme if it is a prescribed scheme or a scheme of a prescribed description.

    (6)   Section 10 of the Pensions Act 1995 (c.26) (civil penalties) applies to an employer who causes a contribution to be paid to an occupational pension scheme that has its main administration outside the member States if—

      (a) subsection (2) or (3) applies in relation to the payment of the contribution,

      (b) the conditions in subsection (4) are not satisfied at the time of payment, and

      (c) the employer does not have a reasonable excuse for causing payment to occur at a time when those conditions are not satisfied.

    (7)   In this section "based"—

      (a) in relation to an employer who is a body corporate, means incorporated, and

      (b) in relation to any other employer, means resident.'.


Representative of non-EC occupational pension scheme to be treated as trustee

   

Mr Secretary Smith

NC28

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1)   In the case of an occupational pension scheme that has its main administration outside the member States, a reference in pensions legislation to the trustees, or a trustee, of the scheme includes a person who is for the time being appointed by the trustees of the scheme to be a representative of the scheme for the purposes of this section.

    (2)   Subsection (1) does not apply to a prescribed reference.

    (3)   In subsection (1) "pensions legislation" means any enactment contained in or made by virtue of—

      (a) the Pension Schemes Act 1993 (c.48),

      (b) the Pensions Act 1995 (c.26),

      (c) Parts 1 to 4 of the Welfare Reform and Pensions Act 1999 (c.30), or

      (d) this Act.'.


Activities of occupational pension schemes

   

Mr Secretary Smith

NC29

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1)   If an occupational pension scheme has its main administration in the United Kingdom, the trustees or managers of the scheme must secure that the activities of the scheme are limited to retirement-benefit activities.

    (2)   Subsection (1) does not apply to a scheme if it is a prescribed scheme or a scheme of a prescribed description.

    (3)   Section 10 of the Pensions Act 1995 (c.26) (civil penalties) applies to a trustee or manager of a scheme to which subsection (1) applies if—

      (a) the scheme has activities that are not retirement-benefit activities, and

      (b) the trustee or manager has failed to take all reasonable steps to secure that the activities of the scheme are limited to retirement-benefit activities.

    (4)   In this section "retirement-benefit activities" means—

      (a) operations related to retirement benefits, and

      (b) activities arising from operations related to retirement benefits.

    (5)   In subsection (4) "retirement benefits" means—

      (a) benefits paid by reference to reaching, or expecting to reach, retirement, and

      (b) benefits that are supplementary to benefits within paragraph (a) and that are provided on an ancillary basis—

      (i) in the form of payments on death, disability or termination of employment, or

      (ii) in the form of support payments or services in the case of sickness, poverty or need, or death.'.


Payment of surplus to employer

   

Mr Secretary Smith

NC30

To move the following Clause:—

    For section 37 of the Pensions Act 1995 (payment of surplus to employer) substitute—

          "37   Payment of surplus to employer

          (1)   This section applies to a trust scheme if—

          (a) apart from this section power is conferred on the employer or any other person to make payments to the employer out of funds held for the purposes of the scheme, and

          (b) the scheme is not being wound up.

          (2)   Where the power referred to in subsection (1)(a) is conferred by the scheme on a person other than the trustees—

          (a) it cannot be exercised by that person but may be instead be exercised by the trustees, and

          (b) any restriction imposed by the scheme on the exercise of the power shall, so far as capable of doing so, apply to its exercise by the trustees.

          (3)   The power referred to in subsection (1)(a) may only be exercised if—

          (a) the trustees have obtained a written valuation of the scheme's assets and liabilities prepared and signed by a prescribed person;

          (b) there is a certificate in force—

          (i) stating that in the opinion of that person the prescribed requirements are met as at the date by reference to which the assets are valued and the liabilities are calculated, and

          (ii) specifying what in the opinion of that person is the maximum amount of payment that may be made to the employer;

          (c) the payment does not exceed the maximum amount specified in the certificate;

          (d) the trustees are be satisfied that it is in the interests of the members that the power is exercised in the manner proposed;

          (e) where the power is conferred by the scheme on the employer, the employer has asked for the power to be exercised, or consented to its being exercised, in the manner proposed,

          (f) there is no freezing order in order in force in relation to the scheme under section 20 of the Pensions Act 2004, and

          (g) notice of the proposal to exercise the power has been given, in accordance with prescribed requirements, to the members of the scheme.

          (4)   Provision may be made by regulations as to—

          (a) the requirements (which may be alternative requirements) that must be met, in relation to any proposed payment to the employer out of funds held for the purposes of a scheme, with respect to the value of the scheme's assets and the amount of its liabilities;

          (b) the assets and liabilities to be taken into account for that purpose and the manner in which their value or amount is to be determined, calculated and verified;

          (c) the maximum amount of the payment that may be made to the employer, having regard to the value of the scheme's assets and the amount of its liabilities;

          (d) the giving of a certificate as to the matters mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (c); and

          (e) the period for which such a certificate is to be in force.

          (5)   The trustees must also comply with any other prescribed requirements in connection with the making of a payment under this section.

          (6)   If the trustees—

          (a) purport to exercise the power referred to in subsection (1)(a) without complying with the requirements of this section, or

          (b) fail to comply with any requirement of regulations under subsection (5),

        section 10 applies to any of them who has failed to take all reasonable steps to secure compliance.

          (7)   If a person other than the trustees purports to exercise the power referred to in subsection (1)(a), section 10 applies to him.

          (8)   Regulations may provide that in prescribed circumstances this section does not apply, or applies with prescribed modifications, to schemes of a prescribed description.".'.


 
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