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By Trish Harding

October 2017: Sun-Herald, Money Article  – ‘Thousands of Aussies caught in tougher rules to transfer British pensions’. Laura McGeoch explains how UK legislative changes implemented in April 2015 have resulted in thousands of Australian expats and British Migrants now having to wait for decades (in some cases) before being able to transfer their UK pensions into an Australian super account.

Prior to April 2015, it was possible to transfer a UK pension to Australia regardless of your age and it was usually cost effective to transfer pension values of £20k and above. Since April 2015, you must be at least 55 yrs of age, with a transfer value in excess of £100k (in most cases) and the primary transfer option available is via setting up a SMSF certified by HMRC (Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs), creating the equivalent of a QROPS – Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pensions Scheme. There are currently over 500 individual SMSFs in Australia on the HMRC ROPS list which have effectively taken the place of some 1,654 retail and industry funds which used to have QROPS status pre-2015 but were effectively delisted after the UK changes.

The change has stopped millions of dollars flowing into the Australian super industry each month. Just one of the 1,653 Australian superfunds to lose their QROPS status was averaging $26 million in UK pension transfers in the 6 months between February and July 2015.

Australia has effectively become collateral damage in Britain’s broad brush approach to limiting transfers to jurisdictions where regulations around early access are more relaxed, such as Malta and Gibraltar.

Sun-Herald Money:-  click here to read the full article ” Thousands of Aussies caught in tougher rules to transfer British pensions” by Laura McGeoch .

Sterling Planners currently offer 2 options for UK pension transfers:

If you have any questions please contact our client service team on 1300 132 737.