Under proposed changes to the UK pension system, transfers from un¬funded Public Sector defined benefit schemes (such as members of the NHS, fire, police, Local Government and teachers pensions) will be banned, except in very limited circumstances.
If you have a UK pension or know anyone that does, contact us without delay – we are happy to explain whether these changes will affect you during an initial consultation at our cost.
For British migrants in Australia it often makes sense to transfer the capital value of a UK pension fund into an approved Australian superannuation (QROPS) fund. There are significant tax and estate planning advantages, as well as increased control and flexibility in retirement.
The UK government has indicated it will continue to allow transfers from private sector Defined Benefit schemes after April 2015. However, it plans to impose two strict conditions on transfers that exceed £30,000. Firstly individuals who wish to transfer must seek advice from a professional financial adviser who is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the UK’s regulatory body. Secondly, the UK government will take into account the sustainability of a fund before allowing a transfer.
Unfortunately these conditions may have the unintended consequences of making it difficult for non UK residents to transfer any Defined Benefit pension schemes after April 2015.
Transferring from a UK Defined Benefit pension scheme is a lengthy process taking 3 – 6 months. For those who haven’t yet acted, the window of opportunity to do so is closing fast and should contact us without delay.