Surely the CSA can’t reverse its own decision?

January 27, 2015

Last year I decided to start paying AVC’s into my company pension. I spoke to the CSA to see if the figures I proposed would be allowed, as they were quite high. After some consideration they said they would allow it in my case (because of my age).

Now 9 months later they have ‘changed their mind’ and say I must pay retrospectively – I’ve gone from zero arrears to £1000+ overnight.

Surely they can’t just reverse their own decision?

I can’t get the money back out from my pension now!


  • Bill says:

    If you got the first decision in writing then you might have case.
    But if you were misinformed over the phone then I’m afraid you will not get very far.
    Nevertheless you are entitled to complain about first it being allowed in the assessment then the decision being reversed at a later date putting you in debt and some compensation should be forthcoming although not enough to cover the arrears.
    I suspect somebody asked for a revision of the assessment if the maintenance amount was reduced and the new decision maker decided that as the case had been in progress previously that the payments were a voluntary extra that should not have been included in the assessment.
    I suggest you appeal a get it looked at again and especially complain about being misinformed in the first place.

  • paul3004 says:

    To answer first comment: I didn’t get a specific letter – they agreed over the phone, after thinking about it for a couple of weeks. But – I then got the new assessed amount in writing and in another 5 letters over the year. I took the fact that I had been reassessed as indicating they had agreed (otherwise it wouldn’t have changed).

    As for “how much” – I opted for 45%, which I could afford as I used up my savings. I needed to start last year because my company is closing the company scheme during 2015. CSA have now capped it at 20%, which I can accept going forward, but not the back dating bit! I cannot get the money back from the pension.

  • Bill says:

    So they did not disallow the contributions just capped them at 1/5 of your income.
    Whether this is fair or not is diffult to determine without a lot more information which is not our place to know.
    As for the arrears they should be negotiated to paid back over a two year period.

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