James Cartwright, Author at QROPS Review

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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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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QROPS – Should I trust HMRC’s list?

Posted by | Offshore, Pensions | No Comments

QROPS confusionPensions transfers for people who are thinking about leaving or have already left the UK are often advised – they can carry huge benefits in terms of tax advantages, relaxed rules, leaving your pension to your heirs and more. However, because the QROPS are all outside of the UK, it can be a murky and confusing world.

One of the first steps that most people take is to go online and do some preliminary research on the internet. This can be a mistake. Much of the information found online was once correct, but has been superseded by more recent legislation, but has been left online. This, combined with more recent articles can only serve to confuse.

One prominent IFA company we spoke to says that a lot of his clients approach the QROPS list on the HMRC website and attempt to contact random QROPS on the list. This can have some amusing consequences. Read More

Sainsbury’s Pension Woes May Hit Commercial Performance

Posted by | Pensions, Savings | No Comments

Sainsbury's pension schemeMost people have a defined contribution (also known as money purchase) pension scheme where the saver will contribute to a pot of money that will be used to provide an income in retirement. However, there are other schemes which can be referred to as defined benefit or final salary schemes.

This form of scheme is almost always an occupational pension scheme, funded through employer and employee contributions. However the pension saver does not have their own, allocated account.

Rather, there is a formula which states what their pension is likely to be on retirement, normally linked to a percentage of the last salary they’ll earn, combined with how long they’ve worked for their company. Traditionally, these schemes were seen as very safe.

But new research suggests that one such final salary scheme, that of FTSE 100 retailer J Sainsbury, may be dangerously underfunded to the point where it may harm the supermarket’s long term performance in Britain’s grocery price war.

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Final Salary Pension Schemes and QROPS – Should You Transfer?

Posted by | Pensions | No Comments

QROPS coins
Since George Osborne’s 2014 Budget announcements regarding UK pensions there has been much discussion around the impact on pension transfers and QROPS.

QROPSreview has previously reported that many of the announced changes have actually been in place since 2006. However, much of the pension flexibility that has got many people excited will not apply to those with final salary pension schemes.

Final salary pension schemes are a type of ‘defined benefit’ scheme where you are promised a certain income in retirement. The amount received is based on a range of factors including; length of time served, your final pensionable salary and the scheme’s particular accrual rate.

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What’s being done about Pension Liberation Scams?

Posted by | Pensions | No Comments

Gavel on financial line graph - depicting legality of pensions liberationPromising signs of economic recovery aside, it’s fair to say that the majority of the UK population is still mired in financial anxiety. Young people struggle to get on the property ladder due to the extortionate entry price (particularly in the capital), soaring energy prices leave the poorest and most vulnerable cold, and 2.4 million UK adults still remain unemployed. Read More


Posted by | Offshore | No Comments

There has been an update in the long running ROSIIP issue with HM Revenue & Customs releasing new guidance following the long-running case.

The ROSIIP case dates back to 2008 when the UK authorities withdrew QROPS status from the Singapore based scheme. After a hearing at the High Court it was ruled that ROSIIP never met the requirements to be categorised as a QROP Scheme. This left those in the scheme possibly facing a 55% tax charge. This is not now judged to be the case. Read More

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