Specialist financial advisers Blevins Franks will help you make the most of retiring outside the UK.
For over 40 years, Blevins Franks has provided specialist international tax and financial advice to British expatriates across Europe, specialising in UK nationals retiring to sunnier climes. They now have 22 offices across London (the head office), Malta, Spain, France, Portugal, Cyprus and Monaco, all offering integrated tax, wealth management and estate planning services.
“We deal with all elements of the financial side of a move from the UK to a new country in Europe,” says Jason, Business Development Director at Blevins Franks. “Instead of perhaps four different advisers (a UK tax adviser, UK financial adviser, plus the same in your new country), we cover all these angles in a coordinated and holistic way.”
Avoiding common problems
In retiring to a new country, you become subject to new tax and financial rules and regulations.
Blevins Franks can help you avoid the pitfalls, rearrange your financial affairs and take advantage of legitimate tax-saving opportunities. Some of the ways they can help include:
1. Tax efficiency
Other countries have different rules, so financial products like ISAs and pensions won’t be taxed the same way as they are in the UK. Blevins Franks can help put in place the correct financial structures to benefit you in your new life.
“I’ve worked closely with Blevins Franks, who have offices here. I’ve applied for the Non-Habitual Residents Scheme, which is another big positive to living here,” says Ian Yarwood, who turned to Blevins Franks for help when retiring to Portugal. “It means that when my pension comes through, it will be tax-free for ten years and if I do consultancy work overseas, that will be tax-free too.”
2. Maintaining your wealth
Blevins Franks can highlight any tax planning opportunities created by moving to a new country, enabling you to maintain and perhaps enhance your wealth and retirement lifestyle. They can also help you preserve your wealth for your heirs, if you so wish.
“Our in-house cross border Pension expertise, and inheritance and succession tax experience is second to none across the jurisdictions we specialise in,” says Jason.
3. Reducing penalties
You’ll need to submit tax and financial documentation to local authorities whilst you are resident in your new country. Doing so late can incur additional tax, penalties and interest.
Blevins Franks can help you get it right from the outset and save you unnecessary stress. They recommend beginning the financial planning process for a move around 12 months before you actually leave.
4. Mitigating Brexit uncertainties
“We have undertaken a huge amount of research on the various ramifications of Brexit in terms of legal residency, healthcare and the impact on UK pensions, including the State Pension,” says Jason.
They should be able to explain your position, depending upon your personal situation and the timing of your move. “In all regards, Brexit shouldn’t hold back anyone who wants to retire abroad,” adds Jason.
Working with Blevins Franks
If you do decide to seek advice from Blevins Franks, you’ll have a main point of contact, who will liaise with all the required in-house experts to provide the advice and recommendations required. “But, don’t think any question or query is too trivial to ask,” adds Jason.
Blevins Franks’ Scotland representative is Janice Munroe. Most day-to-day contact is via phone or email, but she’s regularly in the country if you’d like to meet in person. A number of the team also worked in finance in Aberdeen, so they’re fully aware of the specific requirements of those working in the Oil & Gas industry.
Get in touch with Blevins Franks to chat about your retirement plans. You can also download their comprehensive guides on various tax issues involved with retiring to Europe online here.