Forth Capital’s pension specialists can provide you with unbiased information that allows you to make informed decisions about pension transfers when living in locations such as Australia, the USA, Hong Kong, New Zealand, France, Switzerland, Germany, Ireland, Spain and many others.
Whether you have been living abroad for a day or a decade, our experienced team is just a call away.
Transferring Your UK Pension
Over the course of your working life you may have had the opportunity to work in one or more countries. You will have experienced different cultures and you may have even found a place that has captivated you to such an extent that you have decided to build your life there. Or perhaps you are a foreign national who lived and worked in the United Kingdom and established a UK pension scheme and have decided to return home.
Whatever your unique personal circumstances, maybe you should consider the benefits of transferring your UK pension to a friendlier tax efficient structure.
In April 2006, it was announced that anyone with a personal or occupational UK pension fund who has left or intends to leave the UK to become non-resident for tax purposes may be able to transfer their retirement savings to a more appropriate scheme.
Please note that the UK state pension benefits cannot be transferred.
Key Reasons to Transfer Your UK Pension
- pay less income tax—your pension funds in the UK could be taxed up to 45%
- 100% of your pension fund can be passed to your beneficiaries
- increased tax-free lump sum availability—up to 30%
- access to your pension at 55 years of age
- if you are transferring into a ROPS, a crystallisation event takes place at the point of transfer, meaning that the lifetime allowance rules will not apply thereafter and so you can potentially avoid the Lifetime Allowance Charge.
- Approximately 84% of UK final salary schemes are underfunded, so your pension fund could become insolvent and end up in the pension protection fund with reduced benefits
- flexibility of income
- eliminate exchange rate risk
- control of investment and growth potential
- management of your inheritance tax liability
- consolidation of schemes under one roof
Leaving Your Pension in The UK – What Happens If You Do Nothing?
Now that you have left the UK, you should be considering the options available to you in respect of your pension assets left behind in the UK.
You have three options:
- do nothing. Leave the pension funds in the UK
- transfer to an HMRC recognised overseas pension scheme (ROPS) – formerly known as a QROPS
- transfer to an international SIPP
The following may apply to you and your pension if you leave the funds in the UK:
- income tax up to 45%
- beneficiaries may not receive the full value of your fund after your death
- subject to lifetime allowance (LTA)* assessment—any savings more than the LTA limit will face an additional tax of between 25% and 55%
- subject to ongoing and fast paced changes in UK pension legislation, and tax rules
- funds are generally held in GBP creating a potential future currency risk
- Up to 84% of UK defined benefit (final salary) schemes are underfunded leading to several high-profile closures
- no/limited control of investments
- restricted growth options and capital protection
Forth Capital’s UK Pension Transfer Advice
Forth Capital’s financial consultants can give impartial and personal pension advice, guaranteeing full confidentiality. No matter where you are residing, there is a suitable solution out there for you.
Contact us to discuss your options with regards to pension transfers and all other aspects of your pension and financial planning.
If you would like to read up on UK pension transfers before speaking with one of our consultants, request a free copy of our UK pension transfer guide.
This practical resource will answer the following questions and more:
- how can I pass on 100 per cent of my pension funds to my loved ones?
- can I take investment control of my pension funds?
- what types of pensions can I transfer?
- how will the changes to the lifetime allowance affect me?
- how will the future government policy pension changes affect me?
- what happens next?