telephone: 0113 244 6100
The most common small company-sponsored scheme is a small self-administered pension scheme (known as a SSAS).
SSASs are used to provide pension benefits for directors and possibly other key members of staff. They generally have fewer then twelve members, and must have a "pensioneer trustee" - a professional trustee introduced to ensure that scheme members (who will most likely not be at arm's length from each other) do not agree between themselves to "undo the trust" and walk off with the assets.
SSASs can loan money back to the sponsoring company, and the limits on "self-investment" (e.g. investing in shares in the sponsoring company) are less restrictive than under a "normal" occupational scheme. SSASs often own property that is then leased back to the sponsoring employer with potential tax advantages.
These possibilities mean that SSASs produce their own range of legal issues, as well as the issues that trustees and employers face on larger occupational schemes. For example, how do the trustees meet a request by a SSAS member for a transfer value, when most of the scheme is invested in property that the trustees do not want to sell or possibly cannot readily sell?