Pension administrators: Relief at Source annual information returns
Guidance and specifications for the annual information returns required from Registered Pension Schemes operating Relief at Source (RAS) schemes.
If you’re operating a RAS scheme you must send HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) an annual return of individual information for each tax year ending 5 April.
You must do this by the following 5 July. If you don’t, you won’t receive any further interim repayments until HMRC has successfully received the return.
If you submit your return HMRC will continue to treat it as outstanding if:
- the information is incomplete
- it’s in the wrong format
- it can’t be opened
HMRC will tell you if the information has been successfully received, or if you need to correct or re-submit it.
Registered Pension Scheme RAS spreadsheet
You can send HMRC your return on an Excel spreadsheet that is pre-structured to the format that needs to be followed.
To help you successfully submit the information by spreadsheet we have updated it to include conditional formatting. This means that if you have entered too many characters in a cell the spreadsheet column header in row 1 will turn red and will stay red until you have removed any excess characters.
If you submit the spreadsheet to HMRC without removing the excess characters, the submission will automatically fail and the return will continue to be outstanding. You will need to resubmit an amended spreadsheet.
- are in Excel version 2003 (.xls)
- can accept 65,536 rows of information
- can’t convert to the later version of Excel (.xlsx)
- can’t check the accuracy or suitability of the data entered
If you need a later version of the spreadsheet please email email@example.com and tell us which spreadsheet you need.
Flat electronic text file
Files must be in ASCII/EBC/DIC. The content of files should conform with the registered pension schemes electronic flat text file specifications.
This will create a flat text file (CSV files are not acceptable) that you should submit by one of the methods detailed in your notice.
If at all possible you’re encouraged to submit your return of information electronically as this substantially improves the security of the data.
Submitting your return electronically is also generally easier and less time consuming than manually completing paper forms.
If you’re unable to submit the return of information electronically then the return should be made on form RPSCOM100(Z).
This form can’t be downloaded or copied. To obtain original copies of the form please call the SA orderline from 8am to 8pm. The forms are free.
The RPSCOM100(Z) is read by Optical Character Reader equipment and it’s essential that your submission is 100% correct and submitted in line with HMRC’s published instructions or it may be rejected.
Send completed returns
You should send your return by email, Secure Electronic Transfer (SET), or post.
If you’re sending your return by email you should send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. You’re responsible for the data until HMRC has received it.
The subject of your email must contain the return type, the RAS reference number (including sub-number) and the year of the return.
If your return is over 6MB in size you should split it into separate numbered volumes. You should email each volume separately and number the emails 1 of n, 2 of n etc.
HMRC recommends that you password protect your data and send the password in a separate email to email@example.com.
Secure Electronic Transfer
If you’re sending your return by SET, you should make sure you’ve registered for the service to allow enough time to meet the return submission deadline.
If your data is stored on CD, DVD, USB or paper you can send it to HMRC by post:
HM Revenue and Customs
Centre for National Information (CNI)
Ty Glas Road
Make sure the media is securely packaged, clearly labelled, password protected and sent using a tracked postal method.
If you require any help with the information that is required on the return, or if you have any difficulties in complying, please contact pension schemes helpline.
If you need help with your submission (or if you haven’t had confirmation from HMRC that it’s been successful) please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or Telephone: 03000 582413.
Published: 27 August 2013
Updated: 23 March 2015
- HMRC is constantly reviewing and updating submission methods and contact details, and the most up to date information will be supplied in the notice.
- First published.