Under the pension tax regime introduced by FA 2004 and implemented on 6 April 2006 (A-Day), many types of payment may be made from a UK registered pension scheme, but so-called ‘unauthorised’ payments incur substantially higher income tax charges than authorised payments. In effect, unauthorised payments are tax-inefficient.

Payments made consequent to the death of a member may be authorised payments if they adhere to fairly specific conditions. They may take the form of lump sums and/or pensions and are governed by the lump sum death benefit rule and the pension death benefit rule respectively.

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