If you’re feeling bewildered by the number of financial advice firms offering to ‘help’ you in transferring a UK pension fund to a QROPS, it is probably worth taking stock of exactly what it is that you’re being proposed.
We believe that any firm that you’re considering working with, on this very important financial planning task, must be able to prove that they are working in your best interests at all times. Questions to ask your adviser:
- How are you paid, by a commission or by charging a fee? Commission-based advice can lead to poor outcomes. Why? This is principally down to the fact that once initial commission has been earned, there is no longer any incentive for the adviser to look after the client thereafter.
2. Is the adviser a fully qualified Pension Transfer Specialist? One of our senior partners, Russell Hammond, discusses this further on his Facebook page Russell Hammond PTS
3. How is the firm regulated?
We believe that all of these things must be taken into account if you are to receive the very best advice to help you in the process of understanding the options surrounding the transferring of your UK pension fund to a QROPS.
For a fee-free, no obligation discussion, surrounding the options that you have for transferring your UK pension fund to a QROPS, contact us today using the contact form on the right.
Russell Hammond, Senior Partner at AES International, has produced his own ’16 Point Charter’ for how he works with expats seeking advice on their UK pension transfers. Here it is, below:
Looking for advice on QROPS or SIPPS. Thinking about transferring a UK pension to QROPS?
This is my 16 point charter for how I work with clients seeking advice on their UK Pension Transfers
1. My advice is fee NOT commission based – at least 95% of international advisers are commission based, this is why the exit penalties and costs are so high on the underlying investment structures (almost always offshore bonds)
2. I offer a fee free initial meeting
3. I am authorised and regulated, in the UK, by the FCA
4. I work with clients all over the world, from my London base, using the latest online meeting software
5. All of the advice that I provide is 100% independent, impartial and unbiased at all times. I am never paid by any of the institutions that I may recommend to you. If I am, I rebate it back to you, in full
6. Because my advice does not consist of multiple layers of hidden commission you can expect the solutions that I use to be very cost effective, with ongoing costs ordinarily at least 50% less than those typically incurred when working with other international advisers
7. I am a U.K. Pension Transfer Specialist – as defined by the UK FCA. To be a PTS requires passing a Chartered level exam. Whereas many international advisers refer to themselves as Pension Transfer / QROPS Specialists, a rough estimate is that less than 1% of all international financial advisers actually hold the PTS qualification
8. I am able to advise on all aspects of UK pensions and UK pension transfers including QROPS, SIPPS and the very latest flexi-access and flexi-lump sums rules
9. My Qualifications exceed the UK benchmark with specialisms in investments and pension transfers. Few international advisers hold UK standard qualifications
10. I have been a resident financial expert, for five years, at Expatica – Europe’s biggest expat portal. You can find me at the link below and read a recommendation from Expatica on my LinkedIn profile
11. Top rated by my clients – Vouched For and Linked In. Here you’ll find reviews from clients, not just from the last 12 months but over many years. I have been listed in the Sunday Times as a Top Rated Adviser
12. I have been working with Expatriate clients now for more than 10 years, before this time I worked in Financial Services in the City of London
13. I review my Pension Transfer clients at least every three months with updates in-between where necessary
14. I use the latest tools and data to be able to provide my clients with cutting-edge pension and investment solutions
15. I have a commitment to using zero exist cost investment and pension solutions. Because my advice is fee based, you only pay adviser charges for as long as you continue to be happy. Compare this with the standard QROPS / SIPP arrangement where you end up paying fees for as long as 10 years, whether you’re happy or not
16. I recognise, and demonstrate in the way that I work, that, ultimately the most important part of the whole process is you. Therefore the above works to ensure that the very best solution possible is made available to meet your, and your families, needs.