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Document Why have I been charged interest by HMRC on my voluntary scheme pays?

A significant difference between mandatory and voluntary scheme pays is that with voluntary you remain solely liable for the charge until it is paid by NHS Pensions.


Because of this you are solely responsible for any interest HMRC may charge if the annual allowance charge is paid after the self-assessment tax return deadline of 31 January.


The NHSBSA, NHS Pension Schemes and your NHS employer do not accept any liability for interest charges in respect of your voluntary scheme pays election.


If we are paying any of your annual allowance by voluntary scheme pays this must be paid earlier than HMRC’s mandatory deadline. The deadline for paying voluntary scheme pays is the same as HMRC’s deadline for paying tax on a self-assessment tax return, 31 January.


Tax Year



31 January 2018


31 January 2019


31 January 2020


31 January 2021


31 January 2022


NHS Pensions intends to pay voluntary scheme pays quarterly to HMRC, with the final dates for payment being:




1 April – 30 June

14 August

1 July – 30 September

14 November

1 October – 31 December

14 February

1 January – 31 March

15 May


Which quarter your voluntary scheme pays election will be paid will depend on when NHS Pensions receive and accept your scheme pays election. HMRC may charge interest on any annual allowance charge, accepted by us under voluntary scheme pays, paid to HMRC after the 31 January tax return deadline.


It is important if you are estimating the annual allowance charge to provide us with a ‘best estimate’ on the Scheme Pays Election Notice (SPE2). This will help reduce the amount of interest HMRC may ask you to pay if you change your election because the annual allowance charge to be paid by voluntary scheme pays has increased.


You can find more information about scheme pays in the Pension Savings Statement Guide and factsheets on our website.



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