The Singapore-based Panthera Recognised Overseas Self Invested International Pension had its QROPS status removed in 2008 after HM Revenue & Customs decided that it did not satisfy the criteria set out in the Finance Act 2006 for QROPS.
On 20 May, a High Court judge agreed, deciding that ROSIIP was not open to Singaporean residents, as required under QROPS rules, and was not regulated by the Singaporean pension regulator when in fact it could have been, also as required under QROPS rules.
The ruling in favour of HMRC last month, paves the way for the Revenue to tax the more than 100 investors up to 55% of the amount they have invested in ROSIIP.
Equity Trust had already confirmed it would contest the ruling in a statement sent via Panthera to its investors at the end of last month.
Speaking at today’s International Adviser QROPS Forum in London, Panthera managing director, Bethell Codrington, who has been leading the fight against HMRC on the issue, confirmed an appeal had been lodged.
He also warned the many representatives from the QROPS industry that HMRC is not in favour of the products. He said: “The Revenue do not like QROPS one iota and have made that clear in a number of statements.”
Both HMRC and Equity Trust now have 14 days within which to submit a skeleton case to the Court of Appeal. The case has a “window” of between 10 November 2011 and 12 March 2012 in which to be heard.