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Following the suspension of the QROPS list, James McLeod, head of pensions at AES International, is urging advisers to exercise some caution over transfers until the new list is published on 1 July. He is also calling on HMRC to make the list something which advisers and transferring schemes can reply upon.

McLeod said: “In light of HMRC’s temporary suspension of its QROPS list this week, we suggest advisers and trustees of transferring pension schemes exercise some caution when considering a transfer.

“We do not anticipate the removal of any of the so-called “third country” schemes, such as those based in the Isle of Man, Malta or Gibraltar, but, as ever, it is essential to check whether a scheme meets the QROPS criteria. The action from HMRC of late, suggests any transfers which were deemed to have been made to a non-compliant scheme will likely be subject to the punitive unauthorised payment charge.”

He added: “When the list is again published on 1 July, I would urge HMRC to make it a document on which people can rely as had been the case in the past. Advisers and transferring schemes should be able to obtain at least some assurance that appearance on the list means a scheme meets the ROPS criteria.”

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