The last few weeks have produced fundamental shifts in the world we have grown used to, following the UK’s historic vote to leave the EU, but what does this mean for you and what actions do you need to take to protect yourself and your wealth from its impact?
So much of the financial environment UK expats have come to rely on is based on EU law and now, following the referendum result, all of this is up for grabs. Ian Black, AAM Head of Wealth Solutions, considers below four key areas of your financial wellbeing and the immediate actions you should take.
Before the referendum there were stories of Emergency Budgets, Tax Hikes and rising deficits. Now that the dust has started to settle and the UK has a new Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, and although we won’t know the direction of travel or the new administrations plans until the Autumn Statement1. What is clear is that changes are coming and so it would be wise to prepare for the worst by reviewing how your wealth is structured to minimise the impact of changes as they arise.
The falls in Sterling and the subsequent reduction in Gilt Yields have placed immense pressure on the UK pension system:
The deficits of UK Final Salary pensions were reported to have ballooned by 30% in only
a month to a collective £384bn2
Returns in UK With-Profits pensions are forecast to have dropped by as much as 87%
from the levels forecast when the pensions were taken out3
The ability to transfer pensions overseas is at risk as QROPS exist because of EU law.
Whilst there is no guarantee that these will be abolished there is also no certainty that they will be available for new transfers in the future
3. Estate Planning
EU anti-discrimination provisions improved the position of UK nationals married to non-UK nationals in terms of being able to pass on their assets free of UK Inheritance Tax.
Whilst there is no reason to suppose that these provisions will be removed it would be wise for anyone in this position to review their estate planning position as a matter of urgency – taking no action could cost you 40% tax on everything you own in excess of the Nil Rate Band (currently only £325,000)!
4. Investments and Property
Continuing uncertainty means that markets are volatile, with many Property Funds being suspended and market values moving rapidly in reaction to the latest news4.
In this environment having professional advice and support is vital to ensure that your plans are not derailed by uncertainty.
The outcome of the referendum raises issues for all UK expats, and indeed for anyone who may work in the UK in the future or has UK property or investments.
It is important to take action now to ensure that:
- you do not suffer over-taxation
- you do not lose control of your pensions
- you do not leave your loved ones with a huge tax bill when you die
- your investments are well positioned to ride out the storm
To make sure you do not suffer as a result of Brexit email firstname.lastname@example.org now to learn what steps you need to take.
Head of Wealth Solutions
AAM Advisory Pte Ltd
This article is an op-ed piece by Ian Black. The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of AAM Advisory Pte Ltd. This document/article should not be construed as an offer, solicitation of an offer, or a recommendation to transact in any securities/products mentioned herein. The information does not take into account the specific investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs of any person. Advice should be sought from a licensed financial adviser regarding the suitability of the investment product before making a commitment to purchase the investment product. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future performance. Any prediction, projection, or forecast on the economy, securities markets or the economic trends of the markets is not necessarily indicative of future performance. Whilst we have taken all reasonable care to ensure that the information contained in this document is not untrue or misleading at the time of publication, we cannot guarantee its accuracy or completeness. Any opinion or estimate contained in this document is subject to change without notice. The above report may contain data obtained from third parties and as such we cannot guarantee the accuracy of this data.