France

If you are a UK national living or considering a move to France, it is important to get your financial needs in order. The French tax system operates a lot differently than most countries, including the UK. There are certain things you can do which could significantly reduce the tax you pay in France which will be explained in this text. It is important to understand the basics of French tax law to avoid hefty fines. It is also important to understand how pensions and QROPS are taxed for Expats, as this could significantly change the outcome of your pension income in retirement. The areas we will cover include:

  • Reporting on foreign assets
  • Defining a French resident
  • French tax position for residents
  • Assurance Vie
  • Capital Gains Tax and investment income
  • Social Security Contributions
  • Wealth Tax
  • Succession and Gift Tax
  • Corporation tax
  • UK Pension Options
  • Taxation on UK Pensions
  • How do I avoid the 7.4% social charge?
  • Taxation on Lump Sums
  • QROPS in France

It is important to note that the information provided on this website is just a guide hence before making any decisions it is always advisable to talk to one of our independent financial advisors today to discuss your personal requirements in more detail.

Reporting on foreign assets

Reporting your foreign assets when becoming resident in France is extremely important. Failure to declare overseas assets for the purpose of ISF wealth tax will result in a fine of 40%. Expats are often unaware of the reporting rule or the fines it can impose by failing to do so. Any jurisdiction that doesn’t automatically exchange information to France about taxation will automatically be blacklisted and therefore taxed as if non-reported.

Undeclared assets abroad which cannot be proven as of a legitimate origin will be taxed at 60%. Tax evasion carries a jail term of up to 7 years along with fines up to €2,000,000.

France has doubled penalties for non-reporting of trusts since 2013 hence making it even more important to make sure your financial affairs are in order if you are residing in France.  The current fine for failure to declare your assets is 5% of the trust assets or €10,000, whichever is highest.

Defining a French resident

It is important to note; the French tax year runs from 1st January to 31st December.

If you have been living in France for more than 183 days in a calendar year, you are deemed as a resident in France for tax purposes. This is also the case if you work in France or have most of your assets in France. You may also be considered a tax resident in France if your family live in France and you work overseas. For this reason, it is important to speak specialist tax advice if you have any concerns about your residency as it will affect the amount of tax you have to pay.

French tax position for residents

French residents pay income tax on their worldwide assets as if it were ‘earned income’ including; income from work, investments, pensions, properties and land.

In France, the amount of tax you pay is based on your earnings as a household, not as an individual. The calculation, therefore, takes into account how many people live in the household – one adult is equivalent to one person and one child is equivalent to 0.5 people in the calculation. For example, if you are married and have one child, your income tax will be calculated by dividing the total amount by 2.5 (two people and one child). Typically speaking, the larger the household, the smaller the tax bill is likely to be, although you must be married to both be considered as one person in the tax calculation.

In France, everyone is required to make a tax return each year as no tax is ‘taxed at source’. Married couples file a tax report together whereas non-married couple file a tax report separately. You need to return your tax declaration form by the 31st of May for the previous year. If you miss the deadline date you will be fined at 10% of your tax bill. Please note, the deadline is June if you file your tax return online.

2020-2021 income tax bands are as follows for annual earnings between:

0 – 10,064 EUR 0%
10,064 –  25,659 EUR 14%
25,659 – 73,369 EUR 30%
73,369 – 157,806 EUR 41%
157,806 EUR plus 45%

Table A

Additional tax rates of 3% or 4% will apply if you earn over €250,000 as a single tax payer or €500,000 as a married taxpayer.

Assurance Vie

There are many ways to reduce your tax bill in France apart from having more children…. If you live in France or know anyone living in France, you may have come across the term ‘Assurance Vie’. This provides tax-free growth and is an investment policy which is similar to a trust in the UK, although subject to French inheritance tax. An Assurance Vie can be very tax-effective when withdrawing capital from your investment as you are only taxed on the growth of the investment but only when you withdraw from the investment product. This creates a tax deferral situation which is taxed at reduced rates on withdrawal depending on how long you have had the product. Please enquire directly if you wish to receive more information regarding an Assurance Vie.

Benefits of an Assurance Vie:

  1. Tax Efficiency
  2. Portability
  3. Droits De Succession
  4. Freedom to Pass on Your Wealth
  5. Simplicity for Tax Reporting
  6. Extensive Investment Opportunities

1. Tax Efficiency

At the beginning of 2018, France introduced a new savings tax regime for interest, dividends, capital gains from shares and securities and chargeable gains from assurance vie policies. Comprising income tax and social taxes, the Prelevement Forfaitaire Unique, known as the ‘flat tax’, charges a rate of 30% on savings income. The flat tax was applied to assurance vie policies for chargeable gains on benefits arising from premiums paid into policies from 27 September 2017 onwards. The taxation of assurance vie policies in France are generally more beneficial when the policy is eight years old or more. The income tax is then only charged at 7.5% instead of 12.8%. However please note if the premiums paid exceeds €150,000 the full 12.8% income tax is charged on a proportion of any growth reflecting a premium in excess of €150,000.

2. Portability

As the Assurance Vie is an offshore insurance policy, it can move with you, wherever you live and for however long and it may remain a highly tax efficient product for wealth planning in many countries (please speak to us directly about the tax treatment of your policy in the country you are planning to move to as this can differ the advice we provide). If you are a UK expat and plan to return to the UK, an Assurance Vie will need to be endorsed as it is classified as a highly personalised portfolio bond. However once endorsed you may benefit from ‘time apportionment’ meaning any chargeable gain arising after you return to the UK, on which UK income tax is due, will be reduced based on the time you have spent abroad (as a non-resident for tax purposes).

3. ‘Droits de succession’

The French equivalent of inheritance tax is known as ‘droits de succession’. This tax applies to individual beneficiaries according to the amount inherited and their relationship to the deceased. With Assurance Vie, premiums you pay up to your 70th birthday are subject to preferentially low rates of tax and any heir (with no maximum number) can receive up to of €152,500 from ALL assurance vie death benefit payments payable in relation to the same life assured without paying this tax.

4. Freedom to pass on your wealth

An Assurance Vie allows you choose who you nominate as beneficiaries. A nomination or ‘Clause bénéficiaire démembrée avec quasi usufruit’ allows you to keep control of how your wealth is passed to your heirs. The French succession laws are based on the Napoleonic Code and apply forced heirship rules, by using nominations within the Assurance Vie this mitigates the effect of these rules.

5. Simplicity for tax reporting

Most Assurance Vie providers must appoint a fiscal representative in France with responsibility for reporting on and the payment of personal income tax on savings income on withdrawals. This saves you and your financial adviser time and money because our fiscal representative reports for you on any profits on the consolidated value of the investments within your portfolio, when a withdrawal is made.

6. Extensive investment opportunities

An Assurance Vie allows access to an extensive range of investment opportunities which you can link to the value of your policy. This is not offered by all assurance vie providers and this broad range of funds, stocks and shares meet the strict regulations in France and the European Union for this type of life assurance product. You can either choose ‘SelfSelect’ or choose from a discretionary asset manager portfolio offered by one of the discretionary asset managers we have chosen.

Please note with this product you benefit from the greatest tax efficiency when you pass on your wealth at death.

Capital gains tax (CGT) and investment income

The Capital gains tax (CGT) rate in France applies to the sale of a stock, personal property or land and building. This applies to the sale of worldwide assets.

  • Starting in 2018, a single flat rate of 30% is applied on savings and investment income and gains (12.8% CGT rate plus 17.2% social charge)
  • Property is taxed differently at 36.2% (19% CGT rate plus 17.2% social charge). There are additional taxes that apply to larger gains between 2% and 6% depending on the size of the gain.
  • Sale of shares is taxed at the same rate, although 50% tax relief is granted on the CGT if the shares are held between 2 and 8 years. 65% tax relief is granted if held over 8 years. Please note, no tax relief is granted for the social charge.
  • Personal property is taxed at the same rate, although you receive tax relief of 5% for each asset owned longer than 2 years and full tax relief if held for 22 years. Personal property includes things like horses, wine, boats (not furniture or cars).
  • The home residence is exempt from capital gains tax.

If you are resident in France and own a UK property, you will be liable to UK capital gains tax on disposal of the property as well as in France. France and the UK have double taxation meaning that tax paid in France is offset against that due in the UK. You will therefore receive a tax credit in France for any tax paid in the UK but not for the 17.2% social charge in France as there is no equivalent in the UK. It could therefore be costly to sell your UK property if resident in France.

Social Security Contributions in France

France has a separate charge for social services which is one of the highest in the world. The social charge itself does not entitle you to social benefits, although it does contribute to funding health care in France and differs depending on source, such as earned income, pensions, capital gains and so on. They are not progressive like the French income tax system and effectively form part of the tax system. The rates are as follows:

  • Wages – 8%
  • Pensions – 7.4%
  • Investments, annuities, rental income, capital gains – 17.2%

Wealth Tax

Wealth tax is payable on the net value of your worldwide assets at the following rates 2020-2021:

Below €800,000 0%
€800,000 – €1,300,000 0.5%
€1,300,000 – €2,570,000 0.7%
€2,570,000 – €5,000,000 1%
€5,000,000 – €10,000,000 1.25%
€10,00,000 Plus 1.5%

Please note, the tax is set for each household.

Succession (inheritance tax) and Gift tax

These taxes apply to inheritance and gifts as in the UK and are applied to any gift made throughout life. France offers various gift allowances between family members which can only be used once every 15 years, therefore the gift is free providing it is below the allowance. The following gift tax allowances apply in France:

  • Spouse/Partner – €80,724
  • Children – €100,000 to each child from each parents
  • Grandchild – €31,865 to each grandchild from each grandparent
  • Brother/Sister – €15,932
  • Nieces/Nephews – €7,967

Any gift above the allowance will be taxed at progressive rate. The 2020-2021 tax rates are as follows for gifts between parents, children or married couples:

Less than €8,072 5%
€8,072 – €12,109 10%
€12,109 – €15,932 15%
€15,932 – €552,324 20%
€552,324 – €902,838 30%
€902,838 – €1,805,677 40%
€1,805,677 plus 45%

 

Gifts between brothers or sisters are as follows:

Less than €24,430 35%
€24,430 plus 45%

 

Other family members are taxed at a rate of 55% and those outside of the family are taxed at 60%.

These taxes don’t apply to wedding and birthday gifts providing it is within the donor living standard. It is also not applied between married couples.

Corporation tax

The company tax rate is 28% for profits up to EUR 500k, and 33.33% above this.

UK Pension Options

  • Retain the existing benefits
  • Transfer to an overseas scheme (ROPS)
  • Transfer to an alternative UK scheme (SIPP)

 

1. Retain the existing benefits

For many people, leaving your pension where it is might be the best option, depending on whether you have a defined contribution or defined benefit pension. Some pensions have very good guarantees before and after retirement as well as on death. Other pensions may have restrictions about how you can access your funds, high fees, limited investment and currency options among other things.

Understanding what your pension offers you as well as understanding what your needs and objectives are is important before looking at other options as your pension could be suitable where it is currently based. We provide a free initial consultation to first understand what type of scheme you have in order to give you a fair understanding of whether it is worth looking into alternative options.

To speak to an independent financial adviser as SJB Global, CLICK HERE to complete the form at the bottom of the page so that a specialist can get in touch with you. Some of the main reasons people look at moving away from their scheme are listed below:

a. Defined Contribution pensions – some of the main reasons people transfer away

  • Avoid purchasing an annuity – Many UK schemes only allows the option to purchase an annuity such as Prudential, Scottish Widows, Canada Sun Life and many more. At the time of writing, annuity rates are at record lows, meaning you must live around 40 years to get your money back. They also provide no flexibility and is the main reason pension freedoms came into play to give people the freedom to transfer to more flexible schemes such as a SIPP or QROPS.
  • Multi-currency options – UK pensions only have the option to have your pension denominated in Sterling whereas SIPPs and QROPS allow multi-currency. This has become ever more important in times when Sterling has weakened against its peers as retirees who are relying on an income in any other currency other than Sterling have seen their income drop by 30% over the past 3-4 years due to currency fluctuations alone. If this reduction reduces your income below your means of living, then you may find yourself going back to work in retirement.
  •  Diversified investments – UK pensions are only invested in UK markets. This can have a detrimental effect on your returns as seen below:
    1. The FTSE 100 (UK stock market) has returned 54% between March 2009 to August 2020
    2. The S&P 500 (US stock market) has returned over 470% over the same period
    3. Clearly, it makes sense to have the option to diversify and invest outside of the UK market, both of which are options if you transfer to a SIPP or QROPS.
  • Consolidating pensions into one pot – Should you have various pensions with different providers then it can be difficult to manage pre- and post-retirement. Consolidating them into one place with online access and a financial adviser providing regular updates can help you manage your pensions much more effectively. CLICK HERE to request a call back from a specialist financial adviser.

 

b. Defined Benefit pensions – some of the main reasons people transfer away

  • Greater Flexibility – Defined Benefit Schemes offer a guaranteed income for life from your normal retirement date. This is a good guarantee that is lost should you transfer away. However, a guaranteed income is rigid and cannot be changed once you begin to receive your pension. Transferring to a SIPP or QROPS allows you to have the below flexibilities:
    1. You can access your pension earlier or defer it to a later date without penalties, unlike a DB scheme.
    2. You can invest in any regulated investment.
    3. You can take 100% of your pension as a lump sum, providing you are over 55.
  1. You can increase or decrease your income. Reasons could be:
    1. You become ill and want to spend the money while you can.
    2. You never want to access the funds and therefore pass them to your family.
    3. You can decrease or stop your income if you find part-time work or receive an inheritance in retirement.
    4. There are many other reasons.
  2. You can take ad-hoc lump sums through retirement. Reasons could be:
    1. To give money to a loved one.
    2. To go on holiday.
    3. To buy a property.
  3. You can take your 25% pension commencement lump sum and then defer taking the rest of your pension until whichever age you wish. The reason could be:
    1. You want to pay off your mortgage and then defer taking the rest of your pension until you are retired.
    2. Purchase an investment property or business idea and then defer the rest of your pension until you are retired.
  • High cash equivalent transfer values – Transfer values have increased significantly over recent years because the amount you receive is closely linked to UK gilt rates. As interest rates have been held at record lows and the government have been buying bonds through “quantitative easing” for such a long time, bond yields have fallen to record lows.

Your scheme will provide you with a “Cash Equivalent Transfer Value” (CETV) which is the amount of money the scheme requires to purchase your guaranteed income in today’s money. As yields fall, transfer values go up. If yields fall too much, schemes will struggle to pay guarantees as the performance of the assets they hold could become lower than the amount of money they need to pay for your guarantees. What once was a benefit, could, in turn, become a drawback, as schemes have the right to offer a reduced transfer value should they be unable to pay members benefits.

Therefore, if you are ever going to make a decision to transfer your pension, now is the time. This is extremely valuable and is a very good reason to consider transferring away from your scheme while this offer is still available. CLICK HERE to contact us today.

  • Reduced Life Expectancy – Although this is a very morbid thing to think about, it is an important factor to consider when reviewing a defined benefit pension. The analysis you receive will compare the income between when you retire until you die and work out whether you would be better off in the scheme you are in or in a SIPP or QROPS. Advice is calculated using the average life expectancy for both male and females in the UK.

Therefore, if the life expectancy is much lower in your family, spending more in earlier years becomes much more important as you can access 100% of your pension from age 55 in a SIPP or QROPS. This means that should you become ill, you can spend your pension before you die or pass 100% of the remaining pension to your loved ones.

  •  Avoid pension going into the PPF – The pension deficit of defined benefit schemes has been increasing significantly over the past decade. Many large defined benefit schemes have gone into liquidation over the past few years such as BHS, British Steel, Carillion and many more. When schemes go into liquidation, they enter the pension protection fund (PPF) and you automatically lose 10% of your pension and potentially much more. In many instances, some of your guaranteed increases could also be lost completely.

It is important to note that the PPF is not backed by the treasury and could also go into liquidation should too many schemes enter. The PPF as of June 2020 is in fact in deficit. Upon transfer to a SIPP/ROPS, you will be protected against your scheme going into liquidation. Your funds are completely ring-fenced inside a SIPP/ROPS, meaning that if the SIPP/ROPS trustees go into liquidation, your funds are completely protected.

There are many other benefits and drawbacks in addition to the ones mentioned above. Some schemes have restrictions or penalties to transfer away which may defer a transfer being in your interest. We help you understand whether it is worth looking into alternative options and if it is, we can then access whether a QROPS or SIPP would be more beneficial.

Help us to help you by filling in the form below or CLICK HERE.

2. Transfer to an overseas scheme (QROPS)

A QROPS stands for Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme; an alternative pension that accepts transfers from the UK defined contribution and defined benefit scheme. French residents qualify for a transfer to a QROPS; however, in 2017 the government announced a 25% overseas transfer charge to anyone who transfers to a QROPS that is based outside of the EEA.

Following the UK government spring budget on 8th March 2017, HMRC released an update in their Pension Schemes Newsletter on a few key points, including the QROPS rules, which we need to bring to your attention:

Transfers to QROPS requested on or after the 9th March 2017 will be subject to a 25% tax charge, unless;

  • The ROPS is in the EEA and the Member is also resident in an EEA country
  • Subject to the 5-year rule, where the exemption proceeds no longer apply, the 25% charge can be retrospectively applied. However, curiously, within the newsletter from HMRC, they confirm that “A change in member’s circumstances within 5 years may result in a change to the tax treatment of the original transfer and could lead to a repayment being due.”

Benefits of a QROPS are as follows:

  • Payments from a QROPS are from UK income taxes
  • You will be entitled to a 30% lump sum from the age of 55.
  • You will be able to withdraw from your pension via drawdown or Flexi-access in Malta but not in Gibraltar.
  • You can withdraw 100% of your pension from age 55.
  • Much greater investment choice.
  • Have your pension denominated in any major worldwide currency.
  • You will no longer be subject to UK pension legislation changes.
  • There is no lifetime allowance.
  • UK pension death tax does not apply.
  • Fees are much more expensive than a SIPP.

3. Transfer to an alternative UK scheme (SIPP)

SIPP stands for ‘Self Invested Personal Pension’. It is recognized as an international pension scheme that HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) identifies as eligible to receive transfers from registered pension schemes in the UK. To qualify as an international SIPP, the scheme must meet the requirements set by UK tax law and you must be a non-UK resident.

SIPPs can receive the transfer value from your scheme and then the funds are invested to provide you with retirement benefits at any time from age 55.

Most SIPPs are ‘money purchase’ or ‘defined contribution’ schemes where the member knows how much they are investing, but not what they will receive, because the pension fund size will depend upon the performance of the underlying investments of the SIPP. The performance is not guaranteed.

A major benefit of a transfer to one of these arrangements is that your pension fund does not force you to buy an annuity and could therefore be passed on to a nominated beneficiary on your death – in some cases, free of UK tax. Additional benefits would include: wider retirement options, greater investment choice, ability to have your fund managed by an overseas IFA, choice of any major currency denomination, plus more:

  • Payments from your UK pension will be taxed as ‘earned income’ at source by HMRC, although this can be avoided, although this can be claimed back under the double taxation treaty.
  • You will be entitled to a 25% lump sum from the age of 55.
  • You will be able to withdraw from your pension via drawdown or Flexi-access.
  • You can withdraw 100% of your pension from age 55.
  • Much greater investment choice.
  • Have your pension denominated in any major worldwide currency.
  • You will be subject to any UK pension legislation changes.
  • Lifetime allowance of £1,073,100. Anything in excess can be taxed up to 55% or 25% depending on how you take your benefits when you retire.
  • UK pension death tax applies to UK pensions regardless of where you are resident. This means if you die after the age of 75, your pension will be taxed at your beneficiary’s marginal rate on receipt up to 45%. This may also be claimed back from HMRC and avoided in most circumstances.

Comparison of SIPP vs ROPS

  • There could be a 25% overseas transfer charge applied to a ROPS transfer if you don’t live in the EEA or you move outside of the EEA within 5 years of the transfer. This is not applicable to a SIPP transfer.
  • Both a SIPP and ROPS does not force you to buy an annuity.
  • They both offer the ability to take benefits through drawdown or flexi-access.
  • They both allow you to hold your pension fund in any major currency of your choice.
  • They both can be managed by an independent financial adviser.
  • A SIPP has a lifetime allowance of £1,073,100 that increases by inflation unless you have lifetime allowance protection, whereas a ROPS has no lifetime allowance.
  • A SIPP is cheaper than a ROPS.
  • A SIPP is FCA regulated whereas a QROPS is regulated by either the MFSA or GFSC.

 Taxation on UK Pensions

UK pensions are taxed as earned income in France. Non-residents are subject to UK income tax at source at the member’s marginal rate up to 45%. You have a few options which can be complex without the correct advice.

France´s DTA (Double Taxation Agreement) allows residents to obtain an NT tax code from HMRC to allow you to withdraw income from your pension without the deduction of UK tax at source. You can only receive an NT tax code if you have taken income from a pension before (not including your 25% PCLS which is free from UK tax at source anyway). You can also avoid paying emergency tax if you have a P45 dated the same year you request the payment – this can only be if you are receiving any other UK sources income for that year and live overseas. Should you not have an NT code or a P45 for that year, you have three options:

  • Option 1 – When you withdraw your 25% PCLS, also withdraw the minimum withdrawal amount of income from your pension at the same time. The pension will then be informed of your NT tax code/tax code which can then be used to avoid income tax being deducted at source for all future payments. This can take 2-3 months to obtain.
  • Option 2 – Withdraw the minimum amount of income and wait for your NT tax code before taking the desired income/ad-hoc amount
  • Option 3 – Take a withdrawal and then claim the tax back from HMRC at the end of the year. It is your job to reclaim the tax with HMRC every year. If you are a French resident, you shall only be taxed in France as stated under the new double taxation agreement (DTA) that came into effect as of 1 January 2015. This means a claim can be made to HMRC so that no UK withholding tax applies.

It is important to note that a 9.1% social charge is payable on any income taken from a pension (7.4% for pension income under €2,000 a month/€3,000 per couple unless you hold EU Form S1 or are not affiliated to the French healthcare system The rules surrounding this can be quite complex and requires specialist advice.

Taxation of Lump Sum

Lump sums in France can be taxed in a number of different ways which are as follows:

  1. Marginal rate – You can choose to be taxed at your marginal rate of income tax if no other provisions are made.
  2. Four-year rule – You can choose the lump sum to be taxed as an ‘exceptional payment’ over four consecutive years. The lump-sum is therefore divided by 4 and paid over four years. This may reduce your tax liability if it takes you into a lower tax band.
  3. Fixed-Rate – This method is proven most popular among Expats in France. You can choose to opt for the first lump sum to be taxed at a fixed rate of 7.5%, known as ‘prélèvement forfaitaire libératoire’. This is only applicable to the first lump sum taken. A 7.4% Social Charge is also applicable on the lump sum.

Government pensions are exempt from social charges in France.

QROPS in France

  • there will be no UK tax at source. In fact, there will be no tax at source at all, depending on the QROPS jurisdiction. This means you are only liable to pay income tax in France.
  • There will be no ‘overseas transfer charge’ providing you remain an EEA resident for 5 years from the date of transfer.
  • Your funds will grow tax-free with no UK or France Inheritance Tax liability.
  • Many QROPS’s will allow you to take a 30% lump sum rather than a 25% lump sum as in the UK.
  • You can choose to have your funds invested in GBP, EUR or any major global currency.
  • You have a much greater investment choice.
  • UK pension death tax does not apply to QROPS, meaning 100% of your pension fund passes to your beneficiaries free of tax.
  • Certain QROPS jurisdictions may allow you to access the entire pension as one lump sum. Under the ‘Fixed rate rule’, this means you are able to withdraw your entire pension with a tax rate of 7.5% assuming you have an S1. You can then use certain investment products to place the funds in a tax wrapper to allow the funds to grow tax-free like a QROPS.

Transfers affected by the Overseas Transfer Charge

It is important to note that not all QROPS pension transfers will be subject to the new overseas transfer charge. However, if you request a transfer on or after the 9th March 2017 AND any of the following criteria apply to you, you will be required to pay 25% of the value of the transfer in advance:

  • You are not a tax resident in the EEA and the pension transfer is to a QROPS in a country other than your country of residence (i.e. if you are a tax resident in the UAE and your QROPS is in Malta).
  • You are a tax resident in the EEA and the pension transfer is to a QROPS outside of the EEA (e.g. you live in France and your QROPS is in Australia)
  • You (the member) have not provided all the required information before the transfer is complete
  • You requested your pension transfer before 9th March 2017, but it was not completed and the funds were then sent to a different QROPS which was not the scheme included in the original request.
  • When the transfer was requested you were either transferring your pension to a QROPS in your country of residence, or you were a tax resident in the EEA and transferring to a QROPS also in the EEA, however, within five years of the transfer your circumstances change such that you no longer meet the above criteria. For example, if you move outside the EEA or transfer your QROPS funds away from your country of residence.

Transfers not affected by the overseas transfer charges

If the following criteria apply to you, you will not be subject to the overseas transfer charge:

  • Your pension transfer is to a QROPS in the EEA and you are a tax resident within the EEA (i.e. any country within the EU, including France, plus Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland and Gibraltar)
  • Your pension transfer is to a pension scheme in your country of residence (eg. if you are a tax resident in Australia and you transfer your pension to an Australian QROPS)
  • Transfers which are subject to unauthorised payments because they are not recognised transfers
  • You are a former employee of an international organisation that has set up a QROPS specifically to provide benefits for former employees
  • You are transferring to a QROPS which is an overseas public service pension scheme you are employed by an organisation participating in that pension scheme.
  • You are an employee of an organisation sponsoring an occupational pension which qualifies as a QROPS

 

*Please note: The information provided is general information on the basis of our understanding of the current French tax legislation as of January 2021. Should any of the information be inaccurate or misleading, we take no responsibility for any reliance placed on it. We recommend that individuals always seek specialist tax advice before making any decisions.

Should I transfer to a SIPP or QROPS?

Should you wish to understand whether a transfer to a SIPP or QROPS would be in your interest and potentially which option would be better suited, please complete the form below and one of our specialist independent financial advisers will contact you to discuss further. Please note, there is no cost or obligation to take the call.

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