Revenue E-Brief

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Revenue E-Brief Issue 50/2014, 1 July 2014

Pensions - Personal Fund Threshold - New Electronic Notification System

Purpose of eBrief

This eBrief is to advise of the introduction, from today, of a web based electronic system designed by Revenue to facilitate notification of a Personal Fund Threshold (PFT) for pension purposes.

Time Limit for PFT Notification

The time limit for making a PFT notification is 12 months after the date on which the electronic system is made available (section 787P(2)(b) TCA 1997). Therefore, a PFT notification must be made electronically before 2 July 2015. PFT notifications made on or after 1 July 2014 using the existing paper-based process will not be accepted.

Who should make a PFT notification?

An individual should make an electronic PFT notification if the total capital value, as at 1 January 2014, of pension rights that the individual was building up on that date but to which he/she had not become entitled on that date, together with the capital value of pension benefits to which the individual had become entitled between 7 December 2005 and 31 December 2013, exceeds €2 million. The maximum PFT certificate cannot exceed €2.3 million.

An electronic PFT notification is not required if -

  • an individual had already commenced to draw down pension benefits from all of his or her pension arrangements before 1 January 2014.
  • an individual already holds a paper PFT certificate under the current legislation (see below), or in accordance with the legislation as it applied prior to Finance (No.2) Act 2013, or has made a paper-based PFT notification before 1 July 2014.
  • the total capital value of an individual’s pension rights at 1 January 2014 did not exceed €2 million.

Accessing and using the PFT notification system

The electronic PFT notification system can be accessed in 2 ways. These are:-

or at

If not already registered, an individual will be required to register as a user of one of these services, in advance of accessing the new system.

Where an individual accesses the PFT notification system and satisfies the criteria, a PFT certificate will be generated. This is an important document which should be printed and carefully retained. A copy of the certificate should be provided by the individual to the administrator(s) of his or her pension arrangement(s) in advance of pension benefits being drawn down. This will allow the administrator to apply the PFT to the capital value of the individual’s pension benefits for the purposes of determining whether a chargeable excess arises to which a one-off up-front income tax charge of 41% applies.

Please note that it will not be possible to submit an electronic PFT notification more than once. It is essential, therefore, that care is taken to ensure that the correct information and details are inserted before submitting the notification. If, having used the system to obtain a PFT certificate, it transpires that there was an error in the information entered or information was inadvertently excluded, the individual should contact Financial Services (Pensions) District of Revenue by email at or by post to:

Financial Services (Pensions),
Revenue Commissioners,
Large Cases Division,
Ballaugh House,
73-79 Lower Mount Street,
Dublin 2,


For the purposes of making an electronic PFT notification, Buy-out-Bonds should be included, where relevant, under the Occupational Pension Scheme field.

Background and supporting legislation

Section 787O of the Taxes Consolidation Act (TCA) 1997 (as amended by section 18(2) of the Finance (No.2) Act 2013) provides, with effect from 1 January 2014, for a reduction in the generally applicable maximum tax-relieved pension fund at retirement (known as the Standard Fund Threshold or SFT) from €2.3 million to €2 million. Section 787P TCA 1997 provides for an individual who had pension rights in excess of this lower SFT on that date to protect those rights by claiming a PFT from Revenue, up to a maximum of €2.3 million.

Further Information

Enquiries regarding any issue contained in this eBrief should be addressed to Financial Services (Pensions) District by email at

If confidential information is being included in an email, please ensure that secure email is used. For information on registering for secure email go to the Tax Practitioners page on the Revenue website

1 July 2014