HMRC issues third highest QROPS mass suspension since April 2006

Published:  28 Jul at 6 PM
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The 15 July official QROPS list published by the UK’s HMRC has suspended a total of 118 Qualified Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS).

The mass cull is the third largest since the scheme itself was introduced in April 2006, and includes 99 Australian QROPS, one from Mauritius, 15 from India and two from Canada. The tax authority declines to explain the reasons for its decisions, but suspensions can be the result of pensions no longer qualifying for inclusion, tax abuse, single member schemes losing members or reviews of a scheme’s status.

Meanwhile, the Treasury consultations about the March budget’s proposed changes to pension rules have now ended, with leaked announcements of further amendments likely over the next few months. The new proposals which allow personal choice as to the taking of an entire pension pot have been the cause of much conjecture and not a little concern by ministers.

Fears are surfacing that the vast majority of pension savers will opt to draw down 100 per cent of their nest egg and spend the full amount prematurely, leaving the state to support them with medical care and social payments. Others believe that, having saved responsibly during their working lives, it’s unlikely that most retirees would abuse their new-found freedom of choice.

Many may well put themselves out of the reach of the UK government by emigrating to friendlier, warmer countries, thus making their retirement savings last longer. Migration is at an all time high, with Canada, Australia and New Zealand all favourite destinations along with Spain and France, and Asian hotspots give value for money as well as a totally new experience.
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