What is a QROPS ? – A UK Frozen Pension Transfer; 

QROPS stands for Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme and it is a service available for those who hold an accrued frozen UK pension, whilst living outside the UK.
The HMRC-recognised QROPS pension transfer service enables individuals to transfer their UK pension into another jurisdiction that may be more flexible and tax-efficient.
Before QROPS came into existence in April 2006, when HMRC changed regulations surrounding pensions, UK pensions were traditionally frozen when the holder retired overseas with little access to their money.
Since then, HMRC has established a list of countries where QROPS pension transfers can be accepted. In order for a QROPS to qualify it must be legally-recognised by HMRC and must meet the following criteria:

  • It must be recognised by HMRC for tax purposes – therefore, it must be open to residents of the country where it is based, where there are stable taxation laws in place.
  • The maximum lump sum taken should not exceed 30% of the total pension fund (Malta) only if you have been non UK resident for 5 years, or 25% (Gibraltar).
  • To draw your pension you must be at least 50 or 55 depending on your chosen jurisdiction and the period of non UK residency.

Pension specialists believe that the most beneficial QROPS jurisdiction for UK expatriates could potentially be the Malta and Gibraltar QROPS, following Finance Act 2012 – holding valuable benefits for those who wish to transfer their frozen UK pension there. For a full list of the benefits look at our Benefits of a QROPS page.
Transferring your pension into a QROPS, not only will you receive direct access to a portion of your money when you retire, you will also be able to receive it in the currency of your choice – thus minimising exchange rate losses.
Moreover, depending on where you retire and the tax treaties available at the time of retirement, you may also receive your lump sum and income payments in a tax-efficient manner.

Request your FREE QROPS GUIDE today

Discover how to enjoy a potentially more luxurious retirement by simply unlocking your pension in the UK and transfer it to a more favourable jurisdiction

QROPS – Benefits of an Offshore Pension Scheme

If you are an expat, leaving your pension in the UK will reduce your benefits due to investment restrictions and possible solvency issues. QROPS offers a solution to the problem of frozen pensions by opening up a wide range of options.
Transferring your pension into a QROPS in a highly regulated jurisdiction like Gibraltar or Malta could bring with it various advantages, including:

  • A wide range of tax-planning options available to expats only
  • Increased flexibility when it comes to investment choices, with a broad choice of assets to match your specific risk criteria
  • Greater choice of currency
  • A solid HMRC – recognised overseas pension in well-regulated jurisdictions like Malta and Gibraltar
  • The ability to pass on the whole of the pension fund to beneficiaries in the event of death
  • The potential consolidation of several UK pensions into one pension pot
  • After five years of non-UK residence, you will no longer have to pay UK income tax
  • No cap on value of the pension fund
  • No purchase of an annuity required

Request your FREE QROPS GUIDE today

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