Pensions 2019/20

Registered pensions

Lifetime Allowance (LA)£1,055,000£1,030,000
Annual Allowance (AA) – maximum40,00040,000
Annual Allowance – minimum10,00010,000
Money Purchase Annual Allowance (MPAA)4,0004,000


  1. Contributions to registered personal pension schemes are paid net of basic rate tax. The policyholder pays 80% and HMRC pay 20%.
  2. Tax relief at the taxpayer’s marginal income tax rate is given on pension contributions up to 100% of earnings, capped by the AA.
  3. Those with little or no UK relevant earnings can make pension contributions up to £3,600 gross (£2,880 net) per year.
  4. AA can be increased by unused allowance brought forward from the previous three tax years.
  5. AA is usually tapered down by £1 for every £2 of adjusted income over £150,000, to a minimum of £10,000.
  6. Annual allowance charge is levied at the individual’s marginal rate for pension inputs exceeding the annual allowance.
  7. Employers can contribute to the employee’s pension fund up to the AA per year, less any contributions made by the individual. Employer will enjoy tax relief on those contributions under the normal rules for business expenses.
  8. Investors in personal and other defined contribution pension schemes can access all of their pension savings once they reach age 55.
  9. When the investor takes benefits from such pension schemes under flexi-access drawdown, up to 25% of the accumulated fund can be drawn as a tax-free lump sum. The balance is taxed at the investor’s marginal rate of tax that applies in the year those benefits are drawn.
  10. LA is measured against the capital value of the pension benefits at the time they are first taken.
  11. LA charge is 55% if funds exceeding the LA are taken as a lump sum, or 25% if the benefits are taken as income.
  12. MPAA replaces AA where taxpayer has started to take taxable income from a defined contribution scheme. There is no carry forward of unused MPAA.

State pension

Maximum amount per week2019/202018/19
Old state pension – Single person£129.20£125.95
Old state pension – Married couple206.65201.45
New state pension168.60164.35


  1. An individual is eligible to draw the state retirement pension when he or she reaches State Pension Age (SPA). From 2019, the State Pension age will increase for both men and women, reaching 66 by October 2020. Thereafter, it will gradually increase to 68.
  2. Individuals who reach SPA on or after 6 April 2016 receive the new state pension, which replaced the old state pension, the second state pension and pension credit.
  3. An individual who qualifies for the state pension may choose to defer claiming it. Any deferred pension will be paid at a higher rate than the normal pension.
  4. The state pension is taxable.