Primary Care Support England (PCSE) poses problems for healthcare practices

Primary Care Support England (PCSE) poses problems for healthcare practices

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

Unfortunately, only a minority of healthcare practices have experienced a smooth and problem-free couple of years when it comes to the outsourced function of Primary Care Support England (PCSE).

PCSE operates the collection of superannuation and initial processing of certificates (which has been outsourced to Capita). However, they’ve been slow in processing certificates and estimates, leading to the following issues for medical professionals.

Superannuation certificates

Superannuation certificates are not being processed on time, despite the certificates being submitted before the deadline. Following a review of the March 2018 GMS/PMS Exeter statements, it became apparent that the certificates had not been actioned. If this was identified prior to 5 April 2018 then practices could be advised to pay any shortfalls before the end of the tax year. This solved the problem of tax relief on the superannuation for the 2017/18 personal tax returns.

However, in many cases, this caused another issue. PCSE processed the 2016/17 certificates in April 2018, or sometimes May 2018, but didn’t tie up the separate payments that had been made. This meant there were duplicated shortfall collections, and for some healthcare practices, this caused significant cash flow problems.

For many healthcare practices this hasn’t yet been resolved, and the only action prescribed is to contact PCSE enquiries through their online portal. However, it’s taking months for payment issues to be resolved.

In addition, PCSE haven’t been providing the information to the NHS Pensions Agency, which is why there are gaps in medical professionals’ service histories, even though certificates have been correctly submitted.

Estimate of NHS Pensionable Pay forms

These are also not being dealt with on time, or at all, in some cases. This has resulted in incorrect contributions being collected from the healthcare practice, or even no contributions. New partners or those re-joining haven’t been added to the scheme on time, and partners retiring or becoming deferred members haven’t been removed. Sometimes contributions have continued to be collected long after a GP has retired.

This affects the tax relief available to the GP partners on their individual tax returns. This is because only actual contributions made in the tax year receive tax relief. However, if there are instances where a medical professional’s pension contributions are overpaid, tax relief is restricted.

Other current issues: superannuation certificates

Healthcare practices need to make sure they’re seeking help and advice from specialist medical accountants on completing superannuation certificates for the partners at the healthcare practice and for salaried GPs.

All salaried GPs need to complete a type 2 certificate, and all GP partners a type 1 certificate, of pensionable earnings for their correct pensionable pay to be on their pension record. Increasingly, we are seeing medical professionals retiring with gaps in their records, and this is holding up pension calculations.

The deadline for completion of the 2017/18 certificates is 28 February 2019.

Need help?

For more information on how we can help medical professionals, please speak to your usual Larking Gowen contact.

Call 0330 024 0888 or email

This article originally appeared on the blog of our member firm, MHA Moore & Smalley.



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