Changes to the published list of Overseas Pension Schemes

18 June 2015

HMRC’s June 2015 edition of their Pension schemes newsletter (69) published details as follows of the revisions:

Changes to the published list of overseas pension schemes

Following feedback from stakeholders we have reviewed the published List of Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes Notifications. Lists published after 6 April 2015 contain revised text to more accurately reflect the content of the list.

The published list is not a list of Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) - it is, and always has been, a list of the overseas entities that have:

  • notified HMRC they are a Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (ROPS)
  • made certain commitments with regard to reporting matters to HMRC
  • been issued with a reference number from HMRC
  • requested publication on HMRC’s website.

This list is made available to reduce the administrative burdens on the overseas entity, UK registered pension schemes and members considering transferring their UK tax relieved pension savings to an overseas entity. For every proposed transfer, members and UK registered pension schemes need to satisfy themselves that the overseas receiving entity is a QROPS. One aspect of this is to ensure that the overseas entity has made the necessary notification and undertakings to HMRC that it is a ROPS.

The list of ROPS notifications provides a mechanism for checking that aspect. However, reviewing this list should not be the only check you carry out and rely upon when deciding whether or not to make a transfer. Further checks should be undertaken to satisfy yourselves that a transfer should be made.

Temporary suspension of the list of ROPS notifications

From 17 June 2015 the list of ROPS notifications will be temporarily suspended for a short period to allow the list to be reformatted. The ROPS notifications list will be available again from 1 July 2015. Please note that the reformatted list will look significantly different.

Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) - APSS251 and APSS253

Following the pension flexibility changes which took effect from 6 April 2015, we have updated the forms APSS251- Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme notification and APSS253 - payments in respect of relevant members which relate to overseas pension schemes.

However please note that the QROPS Online System has not been updated, so if you want to notify us that your scheme is a recognised overseas pension scheme or report payments from qualifying recognised overseas pension schemes in respect of relevant members you should use the forms on GOV.UK.

Any APSS251 or APSS253 submitted through the QROPS Online System will not contain the relevant information following the pension flexibility changes and may be rejected as a result. This may also result in delays in the processing of requests.