New pension rules lead to more cash for the taxman

Posted by | Pensions, Savings | No Comments

tax manWhen the details for the new pensions regime became clear we warned that the real reason behind the change was to generate extra tax revenue for the government.

While it was pitched by George Osborne as a brave new pensions world of freedom and flexibility, new figures have now emerged showing the true picture.

New research out today shows the full extent of the windfall for the Exchequer in just the first 3 months of the new system.

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Expat Teachers Rush to Transfer UK Pensions before April Deadline

Posted by | Offshore, Pensions | No Comments

QROPS deadlineWith the April 9th deadline fast approaching, research shows that Independent Financial Advisers are seeing a large increase in the number of overseas residents seeking to transfer their UK teachers’ pensions into a QROPS. The guidance published by the UK government suggests that after April 9th the authorities will block forever the right to transfer these pensions away from the UK. This is all part of the new pensions regime being implemented by the government. Read More

QROPS benefits set to continue for non-resident UK pension holders

Posted by | Finance, Offshore, Pensions | No Comments

finance lightsThere have of course been lots of chatter amongst commentators and within the global expat community about the proposed changes to the UK pensions regime.

Chancellor George Osborne gave his Autumn Statement recently which set out some more detail of the new rules. Here we will explain a little further about the latest situation and what some of the continued benefits are of non-residents moving their UK pensions to a QROPS.

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QROPS News Roundup

Posted by | Finance, Offshore, Pensions | No Comments has previously reported on the new pension regime proposed by Chancellor George Osborne.

Now it seems like the new flexibilities will also be on offer to QROPS members.

Jon Greer, pensions technical manager at Old Mutual Wealth said. “The reference in the Pensions Flexibility note published by HMRC caused some concern that there would be a further test of a person’s lifetime allowance and might therefore use up some LTA.

“However, what they were referring to is the rule which is currently in place but is being slightly amended to help QROPS members to receive the types of benefits that UK registered schemes will receive from April.”

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Boost for QROPS as HMRC Set to Apply Budget Flexibilities

Posted by | Offshore, Pensions | No Comments

Osborne QROPSWhen George Osborne announced plans for a new, flexible pension regime in his March 2014 Budget speech there was confusion as to how this would affect overseas pensions transfers and QROPS in particular.

However, new information has come to light suggesting that HM Revenue & Customs will seek to extend the new flexibility to Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) as well.

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Higher SIPP fees lead to increased interest in QROPS

Posted by | Pensions | No Comments

FeesMany financial advisors are starting to report that they are seeing a significant uptick in the number of QROPS enquiries from holders of SIPPs.

A SIPP stands for a Self Invested Personal Pension Plan and it allows individuals a level of control over the investments in their pension.

From next year such pensions will have to hold a minimum of £20 000 in reserve. This is a result of the Financial Conduct Authority’s new capital adequacy policy which aims to makes these types of pensions more stable.

Unfortunately this will have the unintended affect of making them more expensive as the firms which run them raise their fees to compensate.

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HMRC Estimates 130 000 May Take Advantage of New Pension Rules

Posted by | Pensions | No Comments

piggy bank smashHer Majesty’s Revenue & Customs has released guidance speculating on the number of people who may choose to take money out of their pensions under the new pension regime. has covered the proposed pension changes extensively and we have explained that the lack of a necessity to buy an annuity has in fact been the case since 2006.

The financial advisors that we have spoken to have agreed that while it may be possible to raid one’s pension, it is often not advisable to do so.

In HMRC’s first official analysis of the the Government’s pension changes, it estimates that up to 130 000 people per year will decide to withdraw money from their pension schemes.

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Huge update to HMRC QROPS List Sees Deletion of 118 Schemes

Posted by | Offshore, Pensions | No Comments

HMRC QROPS listThe HMRC list of Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) was updated on 15th July with a record number of QROPS having been deleted.

HMRC’s list represents all overseas pension schemes that have told the UK authorities that they meet the conditions necessary to be a QROPS. has previously reported on HMRC’s list and explained how it should be treated with some caution and should never be used as a guide as to which QROPS would be a good destination for a pension transfer.

The most recent changes have seen a total of 118 schemes removed from the list. Read More

Osborne releases clarification of new pension regime

Posted by | Pensions | No Comments

Chancellor discusses has previously reported on the new pension rules proposed by George Osborne in his March 2014 Budget Statement. Much of the media was left scrambling to detail this so called hammerblow to the status quo. Many column inches were filled celebrating the end of the annuity.

As we explained, the reality was a little more mundane than the tabloids might have had you believe.

Now, four sobering months and an industry consultation later, the Chancellor has released updated guidance on what the new rules will mean in practise. He also took the opportunity to outline some of the new pieces of legislation which he feels will be needed.

It is probably a good idea to begin with the changes to the annuity rules. The current 10 year limit to annuity guarantees (whereby certain annuities will continue to pay out to a spouse in the event of death within the specified term) will be lifted, though likely not abolished. Read More

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