UK Migrants and Australian ex-pats!
Are you moving to Australia (or already moved) and want to transfer your UK pension moneys?
If so, the current position is that you can keep your UK pension money in the UK pension system until you are 55, then you will be able either to:-
*Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme
This page gives information about option b. This is factual information only and in doing so it is not suggested that option b is any better than option a, this is something you will need to consider for yourself. Also this page does not suggest that transferring your pension money to Australia when you are able to, rather than leaving it in a UK pension scheme, is generally advisable or is good for you. Again you need to consider this for yourself.
SMSFs are very popular in Australia. So far there are half a million of them, with nearly a million members. 40,000 new ones are created every year. Under these schemes SMSF members save for their retirement in the scheme, control their own investments, and act as trustees for their own funds. When members are permitted to take benefits from the scheme, they can be taken tax free. This article describes how Australian super works.
If you have pension funds in the UK and you intend to live permanently in Australia you may well be considering whether it is best for you to transfer your pension money into the Australian superannuation system. My article: SMSF - main issues for uk migrants gives more information about the implications of this. If you do decide to do this, one way to do it is to set up your own SMSF once you are 55, and after getting it on the ROPS notification list published by Her Majesty's Customs and Excise, transfer the UK pension money into it.
As for the actual transfer process, this is normally something you can do yourself. If you have decided to start your own SMSF to receive the money rather than to pay it into an industry or retail fund, then you can use one of my packs to achieve this. If you need any help or advice as you go along then I can also help with this.
How easy is it to do yourself?
There are four steps:-
So this is what you need to do this yourself:-
What about timing? If you are 55 or approaching that age and still in the UK, then ideally you would start work with one of these packs about two months before you leave the UK. This is because there are tax advantanges if you complete the transfer within six months after moving to Australia (see the "6 months rule)". However this is not essential, and you can set up an SMSF and transfer UK pension moneys after you have moved to Australia. If you are approaching the age of 65 however, you may have to act quickly. This is because you will not be able to make a transfer after that age unless you are working in Australia. Also after that age the amount you can transfer in one go is more limited. More information about these matters.
Do you need advice? If having read my article: SMSF - main issues for uk migrants you feel that you need advice as to prudence and timing of the process, whether it is right for you, advice about what you can do with your fund, or other pertinent advice:-
All document drafting is carried out and legal advice is given within the rules of the Queensland Bar Association and the Bar Council of England and Wales and is fully insured in one or other jurisdiction. Work in Australia is covered by professional indemnity insurance to a limit of $3m; above that, liability is limited by a Scheme approved under the Professional Standards Act 2004.
19 February 2017