Structural reform approvals

The large UK banks that are required to carry out structural reform need to apply to the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) for some permissions.

Ring-fencing transfer schemes

The Financial Services (Banking Reform) Act 2013 legislated for a process for transfer of business known as a ring-fencing transfer scheme (RFTS). This will enable firms to restructure their businesses to comply with the ring-fencing requirements that will apply from 1 January 2019.

Statement of Policy: The implementation of ring-fencing: the PRA’s approach to ring-fencing transfer schemes


Skilled persons for ring-fencing transfer schemes

As part of the ring-fencing transfer scheme process, firms must appoint a ‘skilled person’ to prepare a scheme report. A skilled person is someone who we judge to have the skills necessary for making a proper report.

Firms carrying out a ring-fencing transfer scheme should apply to the PRA for approval of their nominated skilled person. The application should be countersigned by the nominee.

PDFRFTS: skilled person application form

PDFRFTS: notes for skilled person applications

Send your completed form to transferschemes@bankofengland.co.uk. You can also use this email address if you have any questions about your application. We will consult with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) before we make our decision.

Indirect access to inter-bank payment systems

Ring-fenced bodies (RFBs) are prohibited from entering into any transaction that requires the use of services provided through an inter-bank payment system unless it is a direct participant in the payment system. If it is not, it can apply to the PRA for permission to access the payment system through an intermediary. This condition is set out in Article 13 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Excluded Activities and Prohibitions) Order 2014.

The law only allows us grant permission for a ring-fenced body to access a payment system through an intermediary under exceptional circumstances. These may include:

  • Where being a direct participant in the system would result in a disproportionate level of cost, risk or other burden for the ring-fenced body, its customers or the system, having regard to the PRA’s general safety and soundness objective in relation to ring-fencing under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.
  • Where a ring-fenced body is not a direct participant in the system and joining the system during a particular period would result in a level of cost, risk or other burden for the RFB, its customers or the inter-bank payment system significantly greater than would be the case if it becomes a direct participant at a later planned specified date. We must also agree that granting permission is consistent with our general safety and soundness objective in relation to ring-fencing.

A ring-fenced body must also show that us granting the application would result in it continuing to be able to operate in a way consistent with the group ring-fencing purposes and not adversely affecting our ability to meet our general safety and soundness objective in relation to ring-fencing.

Further information and examples of relevant 'exceptional circumstances' can be found in Ring-fenced bodies - Supervisory Statement 8/16.

How to apply for permission

Ring-fenced bodies should submit their applications to us for approval:

PDFIndirect participation in inter-bank payment systems: application form

PDFIndirect participation in inter-bank payment systems: notes for applications

Send your completed form to paymentsystems@bankofengland.co.uk. You can also use this email address if you have any questions about your application.

Privacy notice

How we use your information

Information we collect

Through our authorisations forms, the Bank of England (the ‘Bank’) collects personal data about you. This personal data could include (depending on the application or notification form submitted) personal identification details, contact information, addresses, employment history and information relating to fitness and propriety such as criminal, civil and regulatory matters. Each form clearly states what personal data is being gathered. The Bank may make further enquiries and seek similar information from third parties and other data sources as we think appropriate to identify and verify information that we consider relevant to the application or notification, this could include criminal, credit and other background checks.                                                                                               

Why we need your personal data

The Bank collects personal data to process a range of authorisation applications and notifications, which include:

  • New firm authorisations
  • Senior Management and Senior Insurance Management Functions
  • Waivers and Modifications of rules
  • Variations and cancelling of Permissions
  • Change in Control
  • Standing Data
  • Passporting

This information is used to assist the Bank of England in discharging its functions, in particular the statutory functions of the Prudential Regulation Authority under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and other relevant legislation.

What we do with your personal data

In complying with applicable laws and for law enforcement purposes, we may disclose information to any government entity, regulatory authority or to any other person the Bank reasonably considers necessary. This may mean that personal data is transferred outside the European Economic Area. Otherwise, we will not disclose your information without your permission. Your personal data will be retained in accordance with the Bank’s records management schedule. 

Your rights

You have a number of rights under data protection laws.  For example, you have the right to ask us for a copy of the personal data the Bank holds about you. You can also ask us to change how we process or deal with your personal data, and you may have the right in some circumstances to have your personal data amended or deleted. To contact us about those rights, including making a request for the personal data we hold about you, or to find out more about privacy and data protection at the Bank, please see the Privacy and the Bank of England page.

This page was last updated 18 May 2018
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