Taxing times in deciding pension options

If you have retired to France, you may wonder what to do about your UK pension. Leaving it there may not be the most tax-efficient plan, but there is no one-size-fits-all solution. 

Expatriates in France have options, but what works best for you depends on several factors.
One new consideration is the introduction of a 25% UK tax on overseas pension transfers. For some expatriates moving pensions offshore, this could cost 25% of transferred funds in UK tax.

The overseas transfer charge
Previously, you could move UK pension funds into a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) without paying UK tax.
This applied regardless of residency or where your QROPS was based, unless your total fund was over the pension lifetime allowance (LTA – currently £1million).
Since March 9, however, the UK treasury can in certain circumstances claim 25% of funds being transferred – of any value.
This will not affect most expatriates in France moving their pensions overseas. You will not be liable for the tax if one of the following applies:
- Both you and your QROPS are in the European ...

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