What was announced in Budget 2017

The economy

The UK debt forecast is expected to be 86.8% in 2017,  increasing to 88.8% next year - 1.4% lower than first forecast. Growth is expected to slow to 1.6%, before picking up to 1.7%, then 1.9%, and back to 2% in 2021.

Britain has a national debt of nearly £1.7 trillion, equivalent to £62,000 for every household, although public sector net borrowing as a percentage of GDP is expected to fall from 3.8% last year to 2.6% this year.

Extra funding was announced for Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish governments.

Additional funding has been promised for social care over next three years with a consultation on long-term funding for social care in the near future.

Pensions

The Government is planning to make changes to the amount your members can pay into pension, before being liable to a tax charge, if they have accessed benefits flexibly (known as the Money Purchase Annual Allowance). For the current tax year this is £10,000 –this will reduce to £4,000 for the 2017/2018 tax year.
Members who are affected by this, you should speak to their financial adviser as there are tax consequences. Find more information about the Money Purchase Annual Allowance and how it may affect members or read the Government’s policy paper.

The Government is considering changing how the State Pension Age is set in future and is expected to put forward proposals to Parliament in May following The Cridland Review. This may be important to your members as they plan for their retirement.

The Chancellor will increase the tax charge on pension transfers to overseas pension schemes (known as Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme). If your members are considering this option it is important that they seek financial advice before taking any action.

All Master Trust pension arrangements will need to meet stricter TPR supervision requirements. You can find out more about the TPR’s response to the proposed changes.

Smaller firms

The introduction of quarterly reporting for business below VAT registration threshold has been delayed by one year.

Any firms losing business rate relief will benefit from an extra cap - meaning their rates will increase by no more than £50 a month. Councils will have additional funding to use at their discretion.

Tax rules require careful consideration and may not reflect your individual circumstances. The above is based on our understanding of current taxation, legislation and HM Revenue & Customs practice, all of which is liable to change without notice. For more information please visit www.gov.uk/browse/tax.