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Pensions (No. 2) Act (Northern Ireland) 2008

Section 16: Qualifying schemes

This section defines a qualifying scheme. Qualifying schemes are those that meet minimum standards and quality requirements, which can be used by employers in discharging their obligations under section 2.

A qualifying scheme can be either an occupational pension scheme or a personal pension scheme. Qualifying schemes must meet the quality requirement for the scheme type (see sections 20 to 27).  They must also be registered under Chapter 2 of Part 4 of the Finance Act 2004, which means that they are registered for tax relief.

Subsection (2) enables regulations to dis-apply the requirement to be tax registered for schemes based outside of the United Kingdom if they meet further requirements to be prescribed in regulations. The further requirements are likely to refer to schemes operating outside the United Kingdom with members who will receive United Kingdom tax relief on their contributions.

The Department may by regulations set out the circumstances in which a scheme, that would otherwise qualify, is not a qualifying scheme. This can be where the payments and contributions – for example annual management charges - that must be made to the scheme exceed a prescribed amount (subsection 3(a) and (b)); or the scheme provides average salary benefits and contains prescribed features (subsection 3(c)).

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Explanatory Notes

Text created by the Northern Ireland Assembly department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes accompany all Acts of the Northern Ireland Assembly.


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