Trusts and master trusts

Our Group Life policy works in conjunction with a discretionary trust

Our group life policies are designed to work in conjunction with a discretionary trust. Any benefits, in the form of a lump sum, will be payable to the scheme trustees. 

Employers can either use or establish their own trust or alternatively could consider the Zurich Registered Group Life Policy - Master Trust.

Employer - Established Trusts

Group Life benefits can be paid through a pension scheme (which should already have a trust in place), or a standalone Group Life scheme. 


Standalone group life schemes can be either Registered schemes or Unregistered schemes with Excepted Group Life policies, and different rules and taxes apply to each type of scheme. More details about these, as well as template trust documents are available in the document library.

Registered Trusts

When setting up a registered standalone Group Life scheme under a discretionary trust the following steps will need to be completed before a policy is placed on-risk

1. Set up the scheme by executing a trust deed.

2. The registered trust deed will appoint a scheme administrator, who needs to register using the HMRC Pension Scheme Online Service.

If the scheme administrator has not previously registered, this can take a few days to complete. Visit the HMRC website to find out how to become a pension scheme administrator. You can also find out more about the role and duties of a scheme administrator here.

3. Register the scheme

This is completed through the HMRC Pension Scheme Online Service.Once the scheme is registered the Pension Scheme Tax Reference (PSTR) number will be available. You will need this number and the date of the trust deed execution before we are able to assume risk for registered group life policies.

Employers can find out more by reading the guide to registering a scheme with HMRC or by visiting the HMRC website.

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The Zurich Group Life Registered Master Trust

The Zurich Registered Group Life Master Trust (ZRGLMT) scheme is a group life assurance scheme which has been established and registered with HM Revenue & Customs to benefit from the tax treatment of premiums and benefits that apply to a registered pension scheme.

Employers can choose our Registered Group Life Policy – Master Trust and join the scheme by simply completing a notice of participation. This means that they benefit from the tax advantages of the scheme without the potential burden of establishing, registering and administering their own trust. 

Find out more about our Registered Group Life Policy - Master Trust by downloading the documents below.