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Scotland Act 1998

Details of Provisions
First reservation

This provides that the regulation of occupational pension schemes and personal pension schemes, including the obligations of trustees and managers of pension schemes, is a reserved matter.

“Occupational pension scheme”, “personal pension scheme” and “public service pension scheme” are defined in section 126(1) as having the meanings given by section 1 of the Pension Schemes Act 1993 but as if the reference to employed earners in the definition of personal pension schemes were to any earners.

Second reservation

This reserves provision about pensions payable to, or in respect of, any persons.  This covers matters such as the payment of pensions, the manner of provision and contribution in respect of pensions.  This is subject to an exception which permits the Scottish Parliament to make provision about pensions payable to or in respect of:


the persons referred to in section 81(3) of the Act. That section provides that the Parliament may make provision (whether by an ASP or a resolution) for the payment of pensions to ex- members and office-holders of the Parliament or of the Scottish Executive. The reservation should not prevent the Parliament making such provision; and


in a Scottish public authority with mixed functions or no reserved functions (as defined in Part III of Schedule 5), persons who are or have been a member of the public body, the holder of a public office or a member of the staff of the body, holder or office.  This would permit the Parliament, for example, when legislating to establish a new Scottish public authority, to require it to provide pensions for its members and staff. It also enables any ministerial functions in relation to the pensions of existing Scottish public authorities to transfer to the Scottish Ministers.

Third reservation

This reserves the subject-matter of the Pensions (Increase) Act 1971, which provides for index-linking of a wide range of public service pensions.

Fourth reservation

This reserves schemes for payment of pensions which are listed in Schedule 2 to the Pensions (Increase) Act 1971.  This includes pension schemes for local authorities, police, fire, teachers and the NHS.  Many of the functions in relation to these schemes have, however, been executively devolved to the Scottish Ministers. Two exceptions are made from the reservation of these schemes which tie in with the exceptions mentioned under the Second Reservation above.  These are for pensions schemes for MSPs and members of the Scottish Executive provided by the Parliament under section 81 and the pension schemes for employees of Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, which are the only Scottish non-departmental public bodies whose pensions are listed in the 1971 Act.

Fifth reservation

This reservation covers, as regards classes of persons to whom public service pension schemes apply, statutory provision for compensation for loss of office or employment, for loss or diminution of emoluments, or employment being affected by constitutional changes in an overseas territory, and also covers as regards these classes of persons statutory provision for death or injury benefit.  The reservation will accordingly cover the statutory compensation schemes which exist for public employees such as local government employees, teachers and NHS employees who lose their employment or suffer diminution of emoluments as a result, for instance, of redundancy or reorganisation.

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