Sometimes with pension planning it can seem that providers have a “take it or leave it” approach. They only seem to offer you one product, and if that does not suit your needs, tough.
This is not the case with QROPS. If you have a UK pension and have left or are thinking of leaving the United Kingdom, a QROPS is well worth a look.
The thing that attracts most people to QROPS is the fact that they are exempt from UK income tax. Accordingly, British expats can release their pension assets from the UK without making a substantial donation to the Treasury of a country where they no longer live.
Another tax advantage of QROPS is their exemption from inheritance tax. It has recently been confirmed by HMRC that assets that have been transferred into a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme are exempt from IHT from the moment that the transfer takes effect – which has a considerable advantage over other IHT saving schemes because they may typically take seven years to take effect.
However, a significant advantage of getting a QROPS over leaving your pension at home is the choice of schemes at your disposal.
Given that you have over 1,000 QROPS to pick from, there is a scheme out there for every investor. Do you need to get your hands on a lump sum quickly? If so, there will be a QROPS that will allow it. Do you have a particular asset that you want to carry across to your foreign scheme? If so, as long as it is not residential property, you will be able to find a scheme that can accommodate you.
Even if there is not a QROPS out there that matches your requirements exactly, you can create one around your own needs. While the fees may be slightly higher than for an off the peg solution, this option gives you the comfort and the convenience of designing your pension scheme around your individual future plans.