UK Pension Transfers to Ireland
The UK Pension Transfer checklist
You have moved away from the UK and have settled into your new home, the kids are starting to settle in at school and the new job hasn’t started to become a chore. With every passing week the new country is starting to feel like home as opposed to a long holiday and you start to settle in to a new normal. It is usually at this point that we start to think of things in the country we used to call home and the things we have left there, family, friends, familiar food and MONEY! After a certain period of time , we start to focus our attention on the financial aspect of our lives and this usually brings us around to the conversation of pensions and how much has been left with previous employers, or built up in private schemes, and how much am I entitled to from the UK government?
Before you think about doing anything with any preserved or frozen pensions you have in the UK, there are certain do’s and don’ts you need to be aware of, here are some of the them
- Update your contact details with your previous pension scheme trustee(s), this will enable them to keep you up to date.
- Ask for an up to date valuation of your pension scheme and the benefits it will provide.
- Think about when you want to retire and where that will be, will you return to the UK or not?
- Get an up to date State Pension forecast of what you will receive from the UK govt. at the state retirement age, this can be done online.
- Seek Independent financial advice from a regulated financial advisor.
- Expect to pay a fee for a transfer analysis, whether you transfer your pension or not, this should be disclosed before you agree to it!
- Only deal with someone who understands UK pensions and a firm that has qualified personnel, they should have a UK qualified individual in house.
- Ensure the company you are dealing with is actually licensed to operate in the jurisdiction where you are receiving the advice.
- Ask for a full list of charges, there are still jurisdictions that do not have commission and fee disclosure, beware!
- Think because you have an old scheme that is offering you a few thousand pounds a year it isn’t worth much, some of these schemes can be worth hundreds of thousands.
- Think that Brexit means you can’t get your UK State Pension, it can still be paid to you, even to an overseas bank account and should still rise each year as it does in the UK, within the EU.
- Forget to complete an expression of wish on your scheme(s), in the event of your death make sure it goes to the people you want it to.
- EVEN THINK ABOUT investing in something that promises unrealistic investment returns, there are no quick wins!
- Transfer your pension without reviewing the advantages and disadvantages of doing so, no solution is without some downside risk, your advisor should make you aware of both.
- Think that transferring your pension is straightforward, it takes time and your advisor will need a lot of information, they can make this easier for you and guide you through the process.
- Leave things too late and expect that you will be able to move your pension in a few weeks, it takes time and proper analysis to ensure it is done right.