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HMRC internal manual

Employment Income Manual

Non-approved schemes: identification

Section 387(2) ITEPA 2003

A retirement benefits scheme was non-approved unless it is within one of the three categories specified in Section 387(2) ITEPA 2003. These are:

  • a scheme approved by Audit & Pension Schemes Services (now Pension Schemes Services) (Note: see EIM15408 for guidance on the treatment of periods when a scheme is not approved)
  • a relevant statutory scheme. Public sector pension schemes are usually within this category. Pension Schemes Services (PSS) can advise if a scheme is a statutory scheme but broadly it is a scheme either:

    • set up under an enactment where the particulars are set out in that enactment or in regulations made under it, or
    • a scheme approved by a Minister or Government department
  • a scheme set up by a Government outside the UK for the benefit of its employees.

It follows that most schemes set up and administered outside the UK will be classified as non- approved (see EIM15416 for further guidance concerning such schemes).