What to be aware of in 2019: Key considerations

16 April 2019
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As the new tax year starts and we look forward to what 2019 holds, our technical team has put together a handy guide of some of the key financial consultations, publications and milestones you will need to consider when advising your clients. Here’s what we know so far:

 

April 2019


1 April - (already implemented but a key implication)
  • The total minimum contribution for auto enrolment increased from 5% to 8%, of which at least 3% must be from the employer
  • Relaxed eligibility to enable more SMEs to access the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) came into force and the compensation limit for acts or omissions by firms which took place after 1April 2019 increased from £150,000 to £350,000
5 April - date past but the published outcomes will be important.
  • FCA consultation following the Retirement Outcomes Review (ROR) on second package of remedies, including investment pathways, ended
6 April - already implemented but noteworthy.
  • The Lifetime Allowance increased to £1,055,000
  • Welsh Government can set the income tax rates for Welsh tax payers. These will remain at the same rates as for England and NI for the next tax year
  • Employer contributions for life assurance and to QROPS will be tax exempt regardless of the beneficiary
  • The personal allowance increased to £12,500
  • The higher rate tax band increased to £50,000
  • JISA limit increased to £4,368
  • Single Financial Guidance Body became known as the Money and Pensions Service (MAPS)

May 2019 

  • 1 - National Savings & Investments index-linked savings certificates will be linked to CPI rather than RPI, where maturing certificates are renewed into a new certificate
  • 20, 21 or 22 - HMRC appeal at Upper Tier Tribunal on tax treatment of in specie contributions
  • 28 – FCA consultation on publishing and disclosing costs and charges information for workplace pension schemes ends

June 2019

  • 5th/6 - Judicial review into whether women born in the 1950s were given sufficient notice of the change in State Pension Age expected
  • FCA Policy Statement on investment pathways (following ROR) expected

November 2019

  • Autumn budget expected
  • 1 - Changes to wake up packs, retirement risk warnings and reminders, and additional annuity prompts, come into force
  • 29 - Help to Buy ISA ends, no new applications after this date

December 2019

  • 9 - Senior Managers and Certification Regime extended to all FSMA authorised firms
 

Responses expected in 2019 on the following consultations:

  • Defined benefit superfund consolidation schemes
  • Taxation of Trusts
  • Permitted links framework

Other expected developments in 2019

  • Phase 2 of HMRC’s Managing Pension Schemes online service to be launched
  • Trials to promote pension and long term savings for the self-employed to begin. DWP to publish a paper on this
  • Decision expected on the Carey pensions judgement
  • Possible Pensions Bill, which could include: the pensions dashboard(s) delivery details, patient capital framework, tPR funding code and Collective Defined Contribution (CDC) schemes
  • Further clarification on how pension schemes should deal with GMP inequalities
  • Review of the outcomes from FAMR
  • Review of the FCA Handbook
  • Strengthening of measures to prevent pension scams including limiting the statutory right to transfer and making it harder to set up fraudulent schemes
 

Looking ahead to 2020:

  • State Pension Age will be equalised at 66 in October 2020
  • Changes to make drawdown pension costs clearer come into force from 6th April 2020
  • TPR’s powers are likely to be strengthened in line with the Government’s response to the consultation

Summary

 

While there is still some uncertainty with the impact of Brexit and when this will happen, it is important to consider the upcoming events that do have more clarity and how this might affect the recommendations made to clients. As and when these developments in our sector come into effect, our teams at Sanlam would be delighted to help guide you through some of the more technical aspects. Please contact your Regional Development Mangers or email our technical team.

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