Occupational Pension Schemes (United Kingdom Members) Regulations

Friday, 29 January 2021: The Pensions Act, 1990 (the Pensions Act) has been amended by the Occupational Pension Schemes (United Kingdom Members) Regulations 2020 (S.I. No. 717/2020) (the Regulations) which came into effect at 11pm on 31 December 2020.

Following the end of the transition period for the United Kingdom’s (UK) withdrawal from the European Union (EU), UK social and labour law provisions no longer apply to UK members of Irish occupational pension schemes.

As a result, the purpose of the amendment to the Pensions Act by the Regulations is to ensure that commencing 1 January 2021 the relevant provisions of the Pensions Act apply to Irish occupational pension schemes with UK members for the benefit of the UK members. Effectively, the Regulations extend Irish social and labour law provisions to the UK members of Irish schemes. 

For further information on the Regulations see:

Occupational Pension Scheme (United Kingdom Members) Regulations 2020

Separately, amendments made to the Taxes Consolidation Act, 1997 contained in the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (Consequential Provisions) Act 2020 (No. 23) have also come into effect. This means that Irish occupational pension schemes with UK members continue to have exempt approved status and remain eligible for tax relief on the basis that they have received authorisation and approval from the Authority pursuant to Part XII of the Pensions Act, to accept contributions from an EU undertaking (including the UK), in respect of EU members (including the UK) and this authorisation has not been revoked. Therefore, under Irish revenue and pensions legislation there is no barrier to Irish schemes with UK members continuing to accept contributions in respect of those UK members.  Furthermore, the amendments to the Taxes Consolidation Act, 1997 mean that pension contributions to UK occupational pension schemes by Irish employers continue to qualify for tax relief.

For further information, contact:

Technical Unit
The Pensions Authority
Tel: 01 613 1900

Note to Editors

The Pensions Authority

The Pensions Authority is the statutory body that supervises compliance with the requirements of the Pensions Act, 1990, as amended, by trustees of occupational pension schemes and trust RACs, PRSA providers, registered administrators and employers. The Pensions Authority also provides guidance and information to these stakeholders on their duties and responsibilities and advises the Minister for Social Protection on pension matters. See www.pensionsauthority.ie