Like any other product, costs vary wildly across different QROPS schemes. This is partly down to the young age of QROPS, it was introduced in 2006, and the fact that the schemes, and thus the costs, differ greatly from country to country, and from company to company.
However, it’s not just a matter of who will give you the lowest price. As with everything, the more you pay, the more you get. That’s not to say the most expensive plan is the best either, but it really does depend on what level of service you receive within the price. Some pension transfer schemes will include the services of an IFA; in turn they may be able to help your pension portfolio achieve rates of return that could far outweigh any additional costs.
The benefits of moving your pension pot is a much bigger factor than the costs involved. Although not cheap, the simple fact is a £50,000 pension pot in the UK is worth about £75 per week upon retirement. With a QROPS scheme, the amount is limited only to the tax free growth and income you could achieve, and may include an option to take the entire plan as a lump sum upon retirement.
QROPS have the advantage of turning your pension pot into an asset. Whereas in the UK, you are legally obliged to purchase an annuity when you reach 75 at the latest, there are generally no such restrictions on offshore schemes. This means that you can easily pass your pension portfolio to your heirs.
The multiple tax and growth benefits and well as the greatly increased flexibility mean that almost all the various pricing plans in the market pale into insignificance. For qualifying expats, a QROPS of some sort is often considered a 'no brainer' and the first and most obvious step when moving offshore.
Many expats simply don’t know, or don’t care, about the pension they may have built up in the UK. QROPS offers a simple effective way to bring your pension scheme in line with all your other investments.
Discuss this with your financial adviser who will be able to let you know about the different schemes in place and the different jurisdictions that you can transfer your pension to.
Please note, you can only utilise a QROPS if you are between the ages of 18 to 75; and are a non-resident British citizen, or intend to be within the next 12 months, or if you are not a UK citizen and are planning to leave the UK within one year.