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Transfer Pension to Australia | QROPS Australia

QROPS Australia | Transfer Your UK Pension to Australia if You are 55+ Yrs Old

New 2016 QROPS Australia rules for people looking to transfer a pension to Australia.

If you are considering moving to work and retire in Australia or if you have already retired in Australia, you should consider what you want to do with your UK pension scheme. A UK pension scheme is often taxed in the UK even if you are resident in Australia whereas most Australian Superannuation schemes are paid out tax-free at age 60.

australian qrops

The issue in the past has been Australian Supers that have not complied with UK regulations. You can see how many Australian pension schemes were closed down to UK pension transfers both in 2014 and 2015. Click these links for past articles.

However, that is all in the past now and you can transfer your pension to Australia if you are 55 years of age or older. Please click this link for the latest QROPS Australia article and news update.

QROPS Australia Rules for 2016/2017

Latest QROPS Australia Rules 2016/17 (Updated 29th September, 2016)

  • New lifetime limit for an Australian Superannuation scheme is $1.6m Australian dolars; this is the most you can contribute into an Aussie Super
  • You can only transfer into a QROPS Australia SMSF scheme if you are over 55 years old
  • If you are under 55, you can keep your pension in the UK or if you want to remove yourself from the UK tax net, you can transfer to a QROPS in the Isle of Man, Malta or New Zealand who all have Double Taxation Agreements with Australia – please email us for more information as this is a complex subject
  • From 1 July 2017, the annual Non-Concessional Contributions (NCC) cap will be $100,000 per year
  • Individuals under age 65 will be eligible to bring forward 3 years ($300,000) of NCCs
  • If you move fast and transfer your pension BEFORE 30th June 2017, you can transfer $540,000 (approx. 318,000 GBP) straight away into an Australian QROPS SMSF 55 Plus Pension Scheme
  • The work test will continue to apply for individuals aged between 65 and 74, i.e. if you are 67 years old and living in Australia, you need to be working 40 hours per month in employment to move your UK pension to an Australian QROPS

If you want to transfer a pension to Australia from the UK, you should consider all your options. We can introduce you to both UK and Australian financial advisers to target the best outcome for your retirement fund.

This article attempts to simplify financial advice for any Brits resident in Australia or moving to Australia. Australians who have worked in the UK can also transfer their pensions offshore. This is also a guidebook for financial advisers looking to give fiduciary advice for their clients moving to Australia.

Many British expats in Australia will have frozen pensions in the UK or will have simply left their pensions under UK rules, but this has tax implications. Out of all the destinations, for British expats considering retiring abroad, retirement in Australia throws up the most complex rules and you need to contact a QROPS Specialist to let them know of your circumstances for detailed, tailored advice.

QROPS Australia Comparison Table

The table below looks at the key features of an Australian QROPS SMSF 55 Plus against Malta QROPS, NZ QROPS and UK Rules.

Pension Feature, UK Rules, Australian QROPS, Malta QROPS, NZ QROPS
Lump Sum Allowed, 25%, As many as wanted after 60 years of age, 30% fund value after 5 years of non–UK residency, 30% of tax relieved funds plus 100% of any investment growth
Contributions Taxable, No, Yes, No, No
Max Annual Income Permitted, Flexible Drawdown, No Limit, Flexible Drawdown, 150% GAD within 5 years of non-UK residency. Actuarial basis after 5 years of non UK residency
Income Tax Payable, up to 45%, 0% after 60 and 15% 55-60*, Australian Income Tax, Australian Income Tax
Tax on Death, Up to 45%, 0%, 0%, 0%
Min Age for Transfer, N/A, 55 (max 65 unless working in Australia, 18, 18
Min Age to Access Pension Benefits, 55, 55/60*, 55, 55

*Pensions are available after the age of 55 (subject to date of birth as the age increases) subject to meeting a condition of release.  This type of pension is called a Transition to Retirement (TRIS).

There is an Australian pension cap and pension cap tax if you go over the lifetime limit of A$1,600,000.

The maximum you can transfer from a UK pension to an Australian SMSF is $540,000 Australian dollars (around 318,000 pounds) if you transfer before 30th June 2017 and you also need to be between 55 and 74 years of age. So, please contact us straight away if this is the case.

You can see quite easily from above that if you are considering retiring in Australia, a Malta or NZ QROPS is not optimal as you would be paying Australian income tax, so these options are reserved for people under the age of 55 who need to move their pension out of the UK tax net or if your final retirement destination is outside Australia.

The History of QROPS Australia

history qrops

On the 2nd July 2015, HMRC removed ALL QROPS in Australia from their QROPS list bar one, the Local Government Australian Pension Scheme for failing to meet the age requirements.

The Local Government Australian Pension Scheme or LG Super only accepted members who have worked for the Australian local government, so would have been unsuitable for most British expats.

However, Australian lawyers worked with large pension companies and Superplus in Australia became the first Australian pension company to change their deeds in order to allow an Australian SMSF to accept UK pension transfers. They did this by raising the transfer age for incoming UK pension transfers to 55 years of age.

This is because, previously, Australian Supers allowed access before age 55 for financial hardship and illness, which the new UK HMRC ROPS rules wouldn’t allow.

However, there are still issues. Anyone aged over 65 years of age and not employed in Australia and anyone under 55, still can’t move their pensions to Australia. The Budget proposal as of 3rd May, 2016 will allow for further contributions of $25,000 per year up to the age of 74 and a work test is required.

If you are 65 and want to transfer your pensions, you can work part-time for 40 hours per month either consulting, baby sitting, lawnmowing or gardening to satisfty the work test. You also need to get a Tax File Number (TFN).

For these Australian residents, we suggest keeping your pension in the UK or moving to an Australian denominated UK SIPP or moving to a QROPS in New Zealand, Hong Kong or Malta. This all depends on your circumstances including your final retirement destination.

At the moment, if you want to transfer your UK pension out of the UK tax net, the most popular offshore option is a QROPS in Malta or a UK SIPP for Under 55’s and an Australian SMSF for over 55’s. More below.

Delisted Australian QROPS

If you have transferred to a QROPS in Australia set up before April 6th, 2015, your pension is OK and now will just be in a delisted scheme, but there is no unauthorised tax charge from HMRC. Most of these Australian pension schemes will be rewriting their deeds to accept British pensioners over the age of 55. If your Australian Super has not rewritten its deeds, I suggest you get them to contact to get their deeds up to UK HMRC compliance standard.

Those that transferred into a delisted Australian QROPS, make sure you didn’t receive any benefits before 55 or bought residential property for example, which would attract a 55% unauthorised tax charge of 55%. For those that have transferred already, you may want to keep up with the latest Australian QROPS news here which includes options on how to appeal and the actions you need to take now.

For those that have not transferred yet, please click on our latest article which deals with UK pension transfers to Australian SMSF 55 Plus retirement plans.

Why a New Zealand QROPS isn’t Suitable for Residents in Australia Despite the NZ-Australia DTA

There is a Double Taxation Agreement between New Zealand and Australia, so why shouldn’t I just move my UK pension to New Zealand?

Here is where I think a lot of the confusion arises from the NZ/Australia DTA. It only applies for transfers between the schemes, so you would still have to transfer it to Australia, otherwise it would be taxed.

So, if you transfer your Kiwisaver scheme to Australia, you would pay no tax on the amount. However, an Australian/New Zealander resident in Australia who still holds a Kiwi Super fund and doesn’t transfer it, would pay tax on the taxable investment returns for life and tax on the income they took from it above the statutory tax free exemption of $18,200 for 2016/17.

Transfers from a New Zealand Kiwisaver scheme are not taxed when you transfer them to a participating Australian super fund. They are also tax-free when you withdraw them from your super account once you are legally allowed to access them. But, here lies the first problem. Kiwisaver schemes were delisted from being NZ QROPS as they failed the pension member age test. Whilst there are other NZ QROPS schemes available, they are not Kiwisaver schemes. an HMRC approved NZ QROPS cannot be transferred to an Australian QROPS.

Plus, there are other issues as well. You cannot access a Kiwisaver scheme until you reach 65 years of age and also may not be transferred into Australian self-managed super funds (SMF’s). Seeing as all the approved Australian QROPS are SMSF’s, this pretty much kills NZ QROPS as an option, leaving Malta ROPS.

Transfer Your UK Pension to Malta and Take Your Pension in Australia Earlier at 55 Rather Than 60

British expats looking to retire in Australia can now avoid UK taxes through transferring their UK pension to Australia via a Qualifying Recognized Overseas Pension Scheme. You can either have your UK pension transferred to a QROPS in Australia where your GBP pension is transferred into Australian Dollars or you can transfer it to a QROPS in Malta or Hong Kong and hold your pension in GBP, EUR or USD. Malta has a double taxation agreement (DTA) with Australia. Hong Kong is a better option for those who are under 55 and maybe want to retire outside Australia, for example in South East Asia and Malta is perhaps a better option for those who will finally retire in Europe.

A QROPS in Malta or Hong Kong can grow tax-free at source. A UK pension transfer to Malta / Hong Kong increases your pension investment & currency options.

For younger pension savers (under 55 years of age) and those unsure if they want to retire in Australia, transferring your UK pension to Malta whilst resident in Australia will leave your options open. You can choose the currency of your pension and the risk level of your pension scheme.

British expats who want to access their UK pension at 55, rather than waiting until 60 can take a 30% tax-free lump sum in Malta and the rest of their pension if they choose, you just would have to pay Australian income tax on it.

Benefits of a Malta QROPS for Residents in Australia

  • No tax on growth
  • No tax on death
  • Full flexible drawdown available
  • 100% of pension pot can be distributed on death to whomever you choose, e.g. 50% partner, 50% to children
  • Client can choose the currency – transfer your UK pension to AUD, USD, EUR, GBP, etc.
  • Can transfer into an Australian SMSF or Aussie Super at a later date if allowed and these pensions return to the QROPS list
  • Australian income tax only, no UK or Malta income tax
  • Client can control what he invests in

Video Explaining UK Pension Transfer to Australia

“British expats who want to retire early in Australia can transfer their UK pension to Malta and take their pension benefits at age 55 in Australia as long as they have already lived offshore for 5 years. Otherwise, they will have to wait, as under Australian Super rules, you can only take an Australian pension income at age 60.”

Transferring a UK pension to Malta whilst resident in Australia; your pension grows tax-free in Malta and is paid out gross in Malta. This avoids paying UK taxes legally. Your pension is then paid into your Australian bank account where you pay Australian tax on the income. Alternatively, you can transfer into an Australian Super at a late date. Once in an Australian Super, there is no tax on income after 60.

UK Pension Transfer to Australia Example Ethel is 65, she is originally from the UK, but married an Australian and has her family in Australia and will certainly retire there. A UK pension transfer to Australia is likely the best option. John is 40 and has a private pension in the UK and a final salary pension from the UK company he worked for since leaving college. He is not sure if he will retire in Australia. A UK pension transfer to Malta might be the best option where he has much greater control over his investments and is seeking higher capital growth on his pension. He will then look at his pension options again near retirement age and may move into an Aussie Super at that stage or leave in a Malta QROPS.

You will still have to pay Australian taxes if you transfer to a QROPS in Malta, but you can defer them. The advantage of the Malta QROPS option is that you can keep it in GBP or move to US Dollars, which is particularly advantageous at the moment, as the Pound and US Dollar are so much stronger than the weak Aussie Dollar. You also get a wider choice of funds to choose from which may help your portfolio to grow at a better rate. This is also the choice if you are unsure where you will retire.

A Malta QROPS can be used if you are retiring at other destinations around the world. You can transfer a Maltese QROPS to an Australian Super at a later date. You can also access your pension earlier at the age of 55 if you have already lived in Australia for 5 years. A Malta QROPS allows full flexible drawdown like the UK, so if you want to access your pension 5 years earlier, Malta may be a better option or leaving your pension in the UK.

Transferring Your UK Pension Directly to an Australian Super – An Australian QROPS

Update 5th May 2016 – Transfers to QROPS in Australia are now allowed as long as they are into an Australian SMSF for Over 55’s.

If you want to take a pension in Australia, a direct transfer of a UK pension to an Australian Super is aimed at people who wish to retire in Australia permanently. The Australian retirement age is 60 years old for Australian Super members taking pension income. Australians who have built up a substantial pension in the UK can also transfer their pensions offshore to avoid UK taxes.

Many Australians have worked in the UK and for some who have been there for many years, they will have built up a substantial pension. Australians can transfer their UK pension out of the UK tax net and have freedom of the currency you invest in as well as fund choice. An Australian who has worked in the UK can transfer their UK pension to an Australian Super when they return to Australia.

Lifetime Cap on Contributions to Australian Pensions

Under the new proposals in May 2016, the  lifetime cap was A$500,000 per person as a Non-Concessional after tax contribution.  In addition $25,000 can be contributed up to the age of 74 as a Concessional tax deductable contribution.  A person can use 5 years of contributions ( up to $125,000) in arrears. However, for 2016/17, this cap has now been increased back to $1,600,000 Australian dollars.

retire in Australia

Transfer Pension to Australia

  • You must be over 55 years of age
  • UK state pensions cannot be transferred to a QROPS, but can be paid directly into your Australian bank account
  • UK SIPPs, SSAS, final salary pensions not in payment and private pensions in the UK can be transferred to an Australian QROPS SMSF 55 Plus
  • UK public pensions cannot be transferred to a QROPS

Do You Qualify for a British Pension if You are from the UK But Live in Australia?

Yes. But, you cannot transfer a UK state pension to Australia. Also, you pay UK tax on a pension in Australia as the Double Taxation Agreements between the countries doesn’t cover state pensions.

Do You Qualify for a British Pension in Australia?

If you are have migrated to Australia from the UK or have built up a UK state pension, then provided that you have fully paid into UK National Insurance Contributions (NIC’s), then you are probably entitled to a UK State Pension.

Pensionable age is currently 65 for men and 60 for women, although the pension age for women is rising gradually to equal that of men. Once the retirement age for women reaches 65 it will start to rise for both sexes. If you are in your forties, pension age will likely be age 67. The UK state pension is separate from any private pensions in the UK or final salary pensions that you may have accrued in the UK. State pensions cannot be transferred to a QROPS, but they can be paid into your bank account in Australia.

How Do I Qualify for a UK State Pension in Australia?

You must have contributed for a minimum of 10 years in the UK to your National Insurance Contributions (NICs) and you need to have contributed for 30 years for a full pension. You can back pay your contributions. Please email us for the latest news.

Do I Qualify for an Australian Pension as a British Expat in Australia?

The Australian age pension is non-contributory, and it is means tested. British migrants resident in Australia are
not eligible for the Australian pension until they have held Australian Permanent Residency (PR) rights for 10 years.

“You will be disqualified from entitlement to an Australian pension for as long as your assets and income, including your British pension, exceed the limits specified in the Australian means test.”

Your UK state pension will not be indexed to inflation, i.e., your pension will remain frozen, it will not rise in line with inflation and you will get no compensation from Australia.

transfer pension to australia

Over 23,000 UK citizens moved permanently abroad to Australia last year which represents over 15% of the total number of people moving to Australia per annum. Some Britons wait until they retire before moving abroad with the expectation of not having to worry about earning a living and relying instead on their pension to provide a regular income. If this is indeed the case and you have contributed to a pension scheme during your working life then you will want to get the most from it that can be taken.

If you have already moved to Australia or are planning to do so, you should seriously consider your pension transfer options and in particular transferring your UK pension into a QROPS as there are a multitude of benefits to be gained by doing so, although you also need to be aware of the new UK budget changes 2015 which will affect your pension if left in the UK. One of the major benefits of transferring your UK pension into a QROPS in Australia is that you avoid the UK death tax. If you leave your pension in the UK, you can look forward to up to 45% death tax charge, although they are talking about reducing this charge in the UK budget, although it still hasn’t happened.

Will I Get Taxed on My UK Pension in Australia if I Leave it in the UK?

By leaving your pension fund in the UK, Australia will apply tax to your pension in retirement and possibly also on the annual growth of your pension fund before retirement at your marginal rate of tax. Pensions which are paid to your spouse and dependent children will also be at a reduced rate.

However, if you transfer your UK pension fund to a QROPS in Australia you may receive a tax-free pension in retirement at age 60. You can also transfer to a Malta QROPS first and take an earlier pension at age 55 rather than 60. Furthermore, you have a much wider range of investment vehicles you can use to try to get a superior rate of growth on your pension.

Moving Your Pension to an Australian Super | QROPS Australia

QROPS in Australia. Moving your UK Pension to an Australian Superannuation Scheme Transferring to a superannuation fund in Australia which is a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) is a process that involves:

  • Checking your current scheme arrangements and being aware of the features and benefits being potentially given up.
  • Completing applications for the Australian Superannuation Fund and filling out the discharge/transfer forms for your UK Pension(s).

The pension funds transferred are sent by BACS, from your current pension fund into your Australian superannuation fund. They should not be paid into any other account and they are consequently secure.

QROPS Australia – Investments & Mutual Funds Available

Each QROPS Australian Super has their own funds. Some are discretionary managed. The Self Invested Schemes (SIS) and Self Managed Super Funds (Aussie SMF’s) allow more flexibility.

QROPS Australia Providers

Popular QROPS Australia providers include Super Plus, Virgin, Care Super and Sun Super. The top 10 Australian Super funds for 2014 were:

  • AUSCOAL Super
  • AustralianSuper
  • CareSuper
  • Catholic Super
  • HESTA Super
  • LGsuper
  • QSuper
  • Sunsuper
  • Telstra Super

A comparison of Australian Super returns can be found here.

However, many of these have been stuck off HMRC’s list as their Trust Deed still allows for early release and would checked to be checked on a case by case basis.  My understanding is that most are retail funds so wide open for members to join and thus, not a ROPS in the eyes of HMRC.

QROPS Australia List

There is an extensive list of Australian QROPS which can be seen on the HMRC’s website. Many of these are employer specific. There is a very competitive arrangement called an Australian Super. A QROPS Australian Super is a good fit if you have already retired in Australia and are about to receive pension income. If a more self-managed approach is required then self-invested schemes are also available via either a UK Self Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) or through a QROPS.

Australian QROPS Rules

The UK system works on the principal of tax relief and largely tax-free growth when paying into your pension with the ultimate retirement benefits being taxed when you receive retirement benefits in the UK, typically at 55 years old. The Australian system for QROPS transfers is one of taxation of the retirement fund growth, but allowing tax-free benefits at retirement after your reach 60 years old.

Although, George Osbourne is changing all this and considering using an Australian type pension scheme where you pay tax on the way in rather than the way out.

An individual can elect to have the tax liability paid by the Australian Superannuation fund rather than themselves. The tax is 15% on the growth of the Aussie Super and the balance is regarded as contributions which haven’t been deducted. Without an election to pay at the concessionary rate of 15%, tax is imposed on the individual’s marginal tax rate which is usually only advisable for low earners.

QROPS Australia Transfer Restrictions

A UK pension can be transferred to a QROPS in Australia, although there are restrictions on some of the schemes allowed (as they have to be HMRC QROPS compatible) and the amounts you can transfer to an Australian QROPS are capped. The lifetime cap is now AUD 500,000.  You can contribute an extra $25,000 per year after transfer which is tax-deductible and you can top up your pensions with 5 years’ worth of missed contributions.

N.B. If the transfer value exceeds these limits, your Aussie retirement fund will tax the excess at 46.5%. Furthermore, any excess amount can be rejected by the Trustees of the fund.

Excesses therefore should be transferred in subsequent years or into QROPS in other jurisdictions, such as a move into a Malta QROPS. The value that represents the growth component of the fund since your date of Australian residency to the actual date of transfer will not form part of these contributions limits. If you transfer your funds to Australia after 6 months of tax residency, you are taxable on the growth since that date. You can elect for the Aussie Superannuation fund to pay the tax on the growth at 15% or you can be taxed personally at your marginal rate of tax, whichever is suitable. There are no death duties in Australia. However, certain payments to Non Death Benefit Dependents would be subject to tax at 15% or 30%.

What Happens to My QROPS if I Move Back to the UK from Australia?

What happens if I transfer to an Australian QROPS and then return to the UK? It may be possible to transfer your Australian QROPS pension to the UK depending on your current visa and on the conditions of the QROPS. Most Australian QROPS also doesn’t allow you to transfer funds until you are 60 as a UK resident.

If you have already been offshore for 5 years, you can transfer to a QNUPS and that wouldn’t be a taxable event.

Also, there could be an Australian exit tax charge of 30%. So, if you are not going to retire permanently in Australia, then a move to a Malta QROPS makes more sense than transferring your UK pension directly to Australia.

Under a Malta QROPS, if you return to the UK, the QROPS acts in a vein similar to a UK SIPP (Self Invested Personal Pension) structure and you would be taxed under UK rules, but there would not be a 30% exit tax charge for moving as there would be under an Australian QROPS.

Consider a UK Pension Transfer to a QROPS in Malta First Rather than a Direct Transfer to a QROPS in Australia

If you are not intending to retire in Australia for the rest of your life or if you want to keep your pension in GBP or move to another currency such as USD and want a wider range of funds to invest in, then transferring your UK pension to a QROPS in Malta may be your best option. It will grow free from Maltese tax and UK tax. You then pay Australian tax when you receive your retirement benefits at retirement or alternatively, transfer into an Australian QROPS at a later date, so there is no tax on your pension income. Although, there would be some Australian tax to pay on the growth.

Benefits of a Malta QROPS for a Resident in Australia

  • You will avoid the 45% death tax upon death after 75 in the UK upon drawdown
  • You will avoid the tax charge upon any transfer to Australia (this will either be taxed at 15% or your highest marginal rate of tax, depending upon how the transfer is structured; and is based upon any growth in your pension fund since you became a permanent resident of Australia. *see below
  • You will avoid the annual growth within an Australian superannuation fund which is subject to tax, normally at a rate of 15%.
  • You can choose to keep your pension in GBP or transfer to any currency you like, such as the strong US Dollar (March 2015)
  • If you ever return to live in the UK or live in another country and you move to an Australian QROPS, you cannot move the pension out from Australia without a hefty tax imposed. A Malta QROPS will give you more flexibility.

*A tax charge will still apply if you decide to transfer to a pension fund in Australia in the future, but by keeping your fund outside of Australia you avoid the need for a tax charge now; plus on-going annual growth charges. You will only pay the tax at a time when you are certain that you are not going to return to the UK. It may also be possible that other options outside of Australia may be more beneficial, even in the event that you remain in Australia indefinitely.

QROPS Australia Summary

If pension remains in the UK:

  • Flexible pension benefits allowed, but income will remained tax at your highest marginal rate (20% – 45%)
  • Only 25% tax-free lump sum allowed at 55
  • Tax on death of up to 45% after 75 years of age
  • Restricted investment options
  • Restricted currency options in most cases

If UK pension is transferred to Australian Superannuation fund:

  • All payments will be tax free at age 60; plus concessional tax rates if you draw early at 55 – 60
  • There are also no restrictions on the amount you can withdraw.
  • We have discounted transferring to Australia at this time for all the reasons previously highlighted (e.g. poor exchange rates, tax on growth in the fund, heavy exit tax).
  • Lump sum allowed: 100% at 60 as long as you have been a non-UK resident for 5 or more complete tax years.

If UK pension is transferred to a Malta QROPS:

  • You are transferring outside of the UK whilst current UK legislation still allows and any transfers should be protected from any future changes in UK rules.
  • UK pension freedoms allowed in Malta, so you can drawdown the entire amount tax-free in Malta
  • No UK taxes would apply whilst you are tax-resident abroad
  • Diversification of assets. The Malta QROPS allows you to invest in shares, mutual funds, ETF’s, government bonds, other bonds, etc from most of the world’s major stock markets and exchanges. This means we can attempt to target a higher return on your investment. Keeps your investment in GBP and avoids 55% tax upon death whilst in drawdown.
  • Currency freedom – invest in any currency you like.
  • If you return to the UK and hold a QROPS – This can be transferred to a QNUPS the UK tax year prior to when you become UK resident again. Under current legislation the payment from a QNUPS on death is not a reportable event and will not be subject to a 55% recovery charge
  • Tax-free lump sum allowed: 100%. Your pension can then be paid out to your Australian bank account every 3 years. Total pension flexibility allowed, the same as UK rules.

Why a Malta QROPS Vs. Aussie Super? HMRC cannot legislate currently or retrospectively against a regulated pension in an EU member state. With a wide network of double tax treaties, a Maltese QROPS does not have to rely on statutory instruments to ensure tax efficient withdrawals.

A double tax treaty which covers pensions exists between Malta and Australia. Thus, you can draw your entire pension tax-free in Malta with no UK or Maltese taxes imposed.

Income Tax in Australia for British Expats: These are the taxes you would pay upon drawdown when you receive your retirement payments from a QROPS in Malta: Australian Income Taxes Alternatively, you can transfer to a QROPS in Australia at a later date and avoid tax on your pension income in Malta.

For a QROPS in Australia, there are no Australian taxes from age 60 providing the Superannuation Fund is providing an income stream to the member.

Under the new proposed rules each member will be limited to a Pension Account Balance of A$1.6m and the balance will be in an Accumulation Account which will attract 15% tax on income and growth.

Given the new contribution limits  of A$500,000 it not possible for a QROPS transfer to reach the new proposed limits. Each individual will have different circumstances. Some clients are better off leaving their pension where it is in the UK or transferring their UK pension to a Self Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) or a Malta QROPS if they are considering moving to Australia, especially if they are unsure of where they will retire to.

For clients who are considering retirement in Australia and are living their already, it maybe prudent consider transferring your pension to a QROPS in Australia (these are no longer available from 1st August, 2015). For clients who wish to retire abroad, but not sure if they will settle in Australia, but are considering moving to Australia, than they should consider a Malta QROPS. Other clients seeking early retirement in Australia or who want more control over their pension may consider transferring to a Malta QROPS now and then drip feed the offshore pension into an Australian QROPS (an Australian Super) at a later date.

We need to assess your circumstances to give an informed opinion. If you have a final salary pension, we will aslos seek UK FCA regulated opinion and require a pension transfer analysis report (TVAS) to compare the benefits of transferring with staying in the UK.

We work with Australian regulated advisers with AFS licence for transfers to Australian SMSF’s.

Please send all enquiries to