These days, ever greater numbers of people are moving overseas and retiring abroad. They may already have a holiday home abroad, which will become their retirement home, or the plan may be to buy somewhere at the time.
Whatever the circumstances, additional financial planning will be needed. Many have relied on their UK pension income, only to see exchange rate fluctuations seriously reduce the value of their pension, sometimes to the point of no longer being able to maintain lifestyle.
Pre-planning can take advantage of investments in the relevant currency which will remove or reduce future currency risk. Furthermore, the type of investment will need to be considered, as plans which are tax efficient in the UK, may not be efficient in the new country of residence.
For example, tax free income from ISAs or tax free lump sums from pension funds in the UK may well be taxable in your new country of residence – it is too late to find this out once you have become tax resident elsewhere. Advance planning not only ensures you avoid these traps, it will also help to identify investments appropriate to your new location, whilst taking advantage of any remaining options prior to your departure from the UK.
Your earlier UK planning may have involved the use of Trusts in the UK or in offshore locations. If this is the case, when moving overseas you need to be aware that not all countries recognise the status of Trusts and if you set up a Trust and have become tax resident in another country, the local tax authorities may well ignore the Trust and treat the assets and income or gains arising as your personal income or gains and seek to tax you accordingly. Simply ignoring this is dangerous and non disclosure on your future Tax Returns may result in penalties applying too!
For some, there is also the prospect of returning to the UK at some time in the future and planning for this in advance can ensure investments are fully portable.
Clients of RAFP benefit from our relationship with local tax specialists in each country and can be confident that their investments will be appropriate to their individual tax position and future plans.