Small Self-Administered Schemes (SSASs) can offer an extremely flexible and tax efficient means of building pension provision for directors and employees of limited companies.

They also allow the scheme members in their capacity as trustees to control the scheme’s investments. A SSAS is a Registered Pension Scheme with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and as such, there are responsibilities and obligations on the scheme trustees and/or the Scheme Administrator. These duties include providing information to HMRC, scheme members and other pension schemes.

Since 2006, the need for a professional trustee to fulfil these functions has not been an HMRC requirement and member trustees may manage their own administration. However, in practice, the knowledge needed to fulfil this role is great and the potential tax penalties and fines for omissions or errors can be high. Each member is required to declare their ability to satisfy these requirements through completion of an HMRC Pension Scheme Administration registration form.

Individuals operating without professional assistance may struggle to meet their duties and conflicts may arise where they are acting in the capacity of company director/member/trustee. An independent specialist, such as Dentons, is often the way to avoid these problems. 

SSAS practitioners may offer a variety of services but we believe that the only way the client can be fully reassured that the scheme is operating correctly is if a proactive role is provided.

HMRC can refuse to grant a new scheme registered status if it believes the Scheme Administrators are not 'fit and proper' persons and can withdraw the scheme’s registered status if it has reason to believe that any of the parties making up the Scheme Administrator do not meet the criteria.

For a full breakdown of the Dentons SSAS, please read our SSAS Employer’s Guide. To find out more about Dentons, please also view our SSAS Due Diligence document.


The establishment process for a Dentons SSAS is the completion of the following five SSAS proformas:

  1. Company details
  2. Pension scheme details
  3. Member details
  4. Accountant details 
  5. Certificate of Incorporation

As well as providing a copy of the sponsoring company's Memorandum & Articles.

Documentation for establishment of a new SSAS is bespoke, please view our new SSAS establishment document, then print off and complete the required new SSAS proforma.

SSAS takeover

For SSAS takeovers, please read both of the following documents and complete the SSAS Takeover Questionnaire:

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