Lisa Smith, Editor and Writer

Expat for over 15 years with my wonderful two children. A teacher and a writer and in my spare time (which is very little) a surfer. You can usually find me at the beach or in a cafe reading or writing. Currently doing a great deal of research and reading in to expat pension and retirement plans such as QROPS and QNUPS. I would love to hear your comments on any article I write, it really does fuel my passion for journalism :)

Money Advice Can Give Thailand Expats A Little Extra

QROPS SafetyKeeping your Money Secure

Everyone cruises through life happily believing they have enough money to live well in retirement, but then something crops up and really you need some more. This is common for expats and retirees in Thailand, who can happily get by on their incomes or pensions because the lifestyle and cost of living are so cheap.

Gibraltar Looks To Tighten QROPS Pension Rules

QROPS May Come Under Easy Access Pension Rules

Gibraltar Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) are likely to face tougher regulation. The Gibraltar Financial Services Commission wants providers in the offshore financial centre to police the advice given by financial advisers from outside the territory and to assess the investment risk of consumers. The regulator is concerned that some QROPS investors opt into

FATCA Is A Real Threat To US Expats In Philippines

Time To Think About Philippines Financial Planning

The financial rigours of Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) are looming on the horizon for US expats in the Philippines. For a long time, FATCA has circulated as an ugly rumour, but that rumour has become a reality since July 1. US expats in the Philippines need to take action to ready themselves for

Pension Liberation Suspects Go Into Administration

HMRC Slip Up Hits QROPS Flexible Access

Two suspected pension liberation schemes that received almost £20 million of fund transfers have gone into provisional liquidation following action by the government’s Insolvency Service. The firms administered the Henley Retirement Benefit Scheme and the Capita Oak Pension Scheme. Both had attracted consumer complaints and adverse rulings from the Pensions Ombudsman in recent weeks. Much

DeVere USA – Home Thoughts From Abroad

deVere Group CEO Continues to Sell Stake in STM

If you are a Brit living in the United States, the one thing you probably lack is a wealth manager who understands your finances. New York and the West Coast are two major hubs for British expats, especially tied into technology, creative arts and publishing. The list of celebrated British names in the US hall

QROPS List – June 1, 2015

QROPS-List

Time’s standing still for the Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) market as the number of expat pensions on the latest official list published by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) remains the same. The list, published on June 1, details 3,702 QROPS pensions – the same number as the last list released a fortnight ago.

FATCA List – June1, 2015

FATCA List – March 01, 2015

The US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) of foreign financial institutions signing up to pass the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) information about American taxpayers with offshore bank accounts and investments is still growing. The latest list has 165,461 financial institutions listed – up 2,851 from May 1, 2015. Most of the new registrations on

10 Tips About Switching A UK Pension Into A QROPS

10 Tips For Making More Of Your Pension Cash

If you are considering transferring a UK pension into an offshore Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) here are 10 tips to consider before making the switch. Financial experts have doubts about whether QROPS in some popular financial centres meet offshore pension rules following the introduction of pension freedoms on April 6, 2015. This relates

Cash-Strapped Self-Employed Can’t Afford A Pension

Pension Liberation Complaints To Soar After Rulings

The self-employed are falling through cracks in pension rules as the number contributing to a personal pension has plunged by two thirds in a decade. Research by think tank the Resolution Foundation reveals that huge numbers of the self-employed have stopped contributing to a pension or do not have one at all. In 2012-13, says

Jihadists Target British Expats In Middle East

Jihadists Target British Expats In Middle East

British expats in the Middle East should watch out for terror attacks as jihadists target them, warns the British Foreign and Commonwealth office (FCO). The FCO says terrorists have threatened British civilians and interests in many places worldwide, but the most likely place an attack will occur is Saudi Arabia. The threats relate to British

QROPS Quandary As Pension Freedom Changes Rules

USA, California, Fairfax, Rear view of happy mature couple dancing on beach

Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) worldwide are going through a period of realignment following the introduction of pension freedoms. The new rules that came into force from April 6, 2015 call for QROPS scheme administrators to certify that they only pay out to retirement savers over 55 years old. This new regulation is causing

deVere Group Continues to Yield Huge Returns for Investors

deVere Group Continues to Yield Huge Returns for Investors

Nigel Green’s deVere Group, the world’s leading independent financial consultancy group, has announced that a number of their clients are to receive returns of up to 11.75%, just six months after initial investment. The deVere-exclusive Goldman Sachs Structured Note has matured within half a year of being in operation, marking another notable success for the

Thailand QROPS –Advantages of Offshore Pensions

QROPS Pensions – New Rules Explained

Expats shopping for a Thailand Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) may think they are out of luck as the country has never had a scheme listed with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). Expat forums in the country warn of dubious advice as many IFAs are not regulated, but the truth is finding a QROPS

Banks Chase US Expats With FATCA Letters

Banks Chase US Expats With FATCA Letters

US expats worldwide are receiving letters from their banks demanding they prove their identity and disclose their tax details. This chasing down of the 6 million or so US expats was triggered by the start of Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) reporting earlier this year. After five years of huffing, puffing and false starts,

Tories Urged To Keep Expat Votes Pledge

Britain Wants 100,000 Expat Voters For Next Election

Electoral reform lobbyists are urging expats to protect their right to vote in the UK by reminding Tory MPs that they pledged to scrap the 15-year rule on taking part in elections from overseas. The Conservatives made a manifesto promise to lift the time limit on expats who want to vote in UK elections. Now,

British Workers Trapped In Retirement Cash Crisis

Watch Out For The ISA Stocks And Shares Tax Trap

British workers are trapped in a retirement cash crisis dreaming of an annual income that pension rules will not allow them to achieve, according to a new study. Almost two-thirds consider they cannot take retirement when they wish, while only 7% of workers are on track to give up work when they planned. The survey

Expat Savings – May 21, 2015

Expat Savings

Expat savers have lost a raft of top fixed rate savings bond this week as Permanent Bank has cut five deals. The bank was offering rates of between 1.6% and 1.69% on bonds running between 15 months and five years. Now, the bank’s best deal is a 1.4% 12-month fixed rate for a minimum deposit

Flexible Pension Freedom Triggers Fraud Alert

Tips For Avoiding Bogus Investment Scams And Fraud

Pension freedoms have triggered a flood of fraudsters cold-calling over 55s with dodgy investment opportunities, according to consumer watchdogs. Thousands of over 55s have received telephone calls, texts and emails from suspected bogus IFAs offering high returns on risky investments, says the Consumers Association. Shockingly, 40% of those contacted confess they have no idea how

How To Benefit From A QROPS In Malaysia

US Residents See Extra Benefits in QROPS

So you are an expat living in a country without any Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) providers – so how do you switch your pension offshore? This is an often asked question as only 45 financial centres offer QROPS and for many, the retirement saver must live in country. Most of the popular British

deVere Group Awards, Accolades and Accusations

Hong Kong

Owing to its status as the largest and the highest profile expat financial advisory firm in the world, deVere Group often comes under scrutiny. But rarely has it received this scrutiny in such extreme forms as it has this week. On the one hand, deVere Group CEO, Nigel Green, posted a blog in which he