The half completed bridge – pension tax reform.


half built

Pension Tax relief – unfinished business!



Today is Budget Day, though you wouldn’t know it! It’s a kind of side-issue when mainstream news is dominated by Trump’s latest antics and speculation over BREXIT.

There was a time when the Pension world would be braced against the mast, awaiting the next tax hurricane; if not Pension Freedoms, adjustments to LTA or AA. If not the abolition of higher rate tax-relief , the wholesale abolition of EET and a switch to EET.

Somehow Osborne lost his nerve, maybe because of his 12 strong majority or because of BREXIT or because he is public-school pussy who backed down when the whips told his back-benchers wouldn’t tolerate a middle class tax-hike.

So what we are left with is a half-completed bridge. We’ve all seen them on our travels, great ideas of previous administrations that could never quite be lined up to deliver intended traffic.

An unfair system that distributes to the rich.

This April will be the cruellest month for many on low incomes. Cuts in services and welfare introduced in previous budgets will be implemented in this. Meanwhile, the pension system continues to allow the wealthy to transfer wealth into tax-privileged onshore havens , not for spending on retirement essentials , but as part of wealth maintenance.

I may be a Tory by card  but my politics are to do with fairness and the pension taxation system is an unfair system. At a time when poor people are paying for the banker’s ruination of the economy nearly 10 years ago, we continue to operate a full EET system which 25% of the time is EEE!

It is not a priority today, God knows May and Hammond have enough on their plate with the mess they’ve inherited by the Toffee-Twins, but it cannot be allowed to be forgotten.

If LISA is a trial run for what is to come, then no thanks! We have enough savings schemes as it is. We need spending schemes, schemes designed to spend our money in retirement in an ordered way. We need spending schemes (ok pensions) that allow people to retire and don’t chain them to the toad work for ever.

We need a strong state pension! Long live the triple lock!

We need a social care system that compliments the state and private pensions!

We need an emphasis on looking after those in later life!

We do not need any more tax-breaks for rich people (like me) to pile up cash for ever!

I will be the only person calling for it today, but call I will. We need a root and branch reform of the way we tax pensions so that they become fair for all and not the tax-havens of the wealthy!

The plans are in place, the foundations have been built, please Mr Hammond- help those “just about making it” to rediscover the will to save for their old age; make pensions fair for all!

Finish that bridge!


About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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