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Guide to Ssas

    Guide to Ssas


    Small self-administered schemes (Ssas) waned in popularity during the early 2000s. At the start of this century the expense of running Ssas made these schemes seem less attractive than self-invested personal pensions (Sipps).

    However, in recent years, the situation has to some extent been reversed.

    Doing away with the compulsory pensioneer trustee and actuary for Ssas in 2006 evened the field to some extent. More recently, the Financial Conduct Authority’s increased regulatory burden on Sipps has seen their costs increase.

    The oversight required, particularly where non-standard assets are used, has seen some Sipp providers drop out of the market and therefore, for specialist Ssas providers, there is an increasing market.

    With Ssas member trustees can control what professional parties are appointed to assist them and negotiate their explicit fees.

    Being trustees and co signatories they can also control every penny of the schemes assets and thus this control over administration, capital, investment and ultimately cost continues to make Ssas attractive.

    Intermediaries are now beginning to realise that Ssas can often be every bit as flexible and cost effective as their self invested rivals.

    This guide will explore the pros and cons of Ssas, the alternatives to this type of scheme and what impact pension freedom has had on the popularity of this pension product.

    Supporting material produced by: Claire Trott, head of pensions technical at Talbot & Muir; John Keenan, senior manager of Xafinity; Robert Graves, head of pensions technical services at Rowanmoor; Elaine Turtle, director of DP Pensions; and Martin Tilley, director of technical services at Dentons Pension Management.

    In this guide


    Please answer the six multiple choice questions below in order to bank your CPD. Multiple attempts are available until all questions are correctly answered.

    1. What is the maximum percentage of its assets that a Ssas can lend to a founder/associated participating employer?

    2. What is the maximum number of members a Ssas can have at one time?

    3. What, according to Mr Keenan, would business owners prefer to back?

    4. What has been a requirement for scheme administrators since September 2014?

    5. According to all experts, what has had the biggest impact on Ssas since Pension Freedoms?

    6. Unlike Sipp operators, Ssas providers do not have to contend with capital adequacy changes that take effect for Sipp providers in September. True or false?

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