RSM welcomes Autumn Statement crackdown on pension fraud

Commenting on what the pensions sector will wish to look out for at the Autumn Statement, Ian Bell, RSM’s Head of Pensions said:

‘It’s certainly welcome news that the Chancellor looks set to announce a ban on cold callers preying on those who are considering cashing in their pension pots. The scandal of pensions fraud has gone on for too long, and as our own research shows, the problem has got worse since the introduction of pensions freedom reforms last year.

‘However, we shouldn’t be as naïve to think that this type of fraud will instantly stop as a result. Calls from overseas will certainly still continue and it will now be incumbent on everyone involved in the legitimate pensions industry – scheme sponsors, trustees, regulators and members - to all play their part and remain vigilant.

‘As regards other measures to look out for, we anticipate that this year’s Autumn Statement will be relatively pensions light. After such upheaval in recent years, that will come as a blessed relief to many. However, we might see an announcement about an allowance for people to withdraw £500 tax free, before the age of 55, from their defined contribution pension to redeem against the cost of financial advice.

‘We will also be keeping an eye on any proposed changes to the taxation of unfunded employer financed retirement benefit schemes (unfunded EFRBS). We could conceivably see minor changes or even a major review.'