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Eversheds comment: Budget 2016 – no radical reform of pensions tax relief but still scope for surprises

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    Commenting on likely pensions measures to be announced at today's Budget, Francois Barker, head of pensions at law firm Eversheds, says:

    “On the back of recent press reports it is now widely expected that the Chancellor will shy away from making radical changes to the system of pensions tax relief. However, everyone is waiting to see whether this is simply a delay until after the EU referendum or whether he will rule out radical reforms for this Parliament.

    "There is also still scope for some surprises and, given the Chancellor’s past form, this cannot be ruled out. We all know that he still has to find savings in order to balance the books and pensions has some big numbers attached to it. Further reductions in the lifetime and the annual allowances or changing the way in which pension benefits are measured against them are both options. Abolishing NICs relief on employer pension contributions (and thereby putting an end to salary sacrifice) is also a possibility and one with a far from insignificant £14bn per year of savings attached.



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