British expats should review their financial options as a no-deal Brexit looks on the cards, warns a leading international financial firm.
Around 1.8 million British expats in Europe could face major financial disruption if the European Union and the UK fail to agree terms for a friendly Brexit.
The British government is readying for the worst by publishing 25 technical notices briefing businesses, government departments and the public about how leaving the EU on March 29 may impact them.
The most unnerving prospect is a breakdown in banking services that will prevent access to cash, savings and pension payments.
The potential crisis has spurred James Green, divisional manager for Western Europe for deVere Group to warn expats to prepare for the worst.
Crashing out of Europe
“A no-deal Brexit is now expected by a growing number of experts and the wider population to be the most likely outcome,” he said.
“If the UK crashes out of Europe with no deal in place, the estimated 1.8 million expats living in the EU could be financially impacted in two key ways.
“First, the pound would inevitably suffer, and it could fall hard. This would deliver another heavy and serious blow for those who receive UK pensions or income in pounds as the cost of living, in effect, would be significantly more expensive.
“Second, unless there is considerable post-Brexit collaboration between the UK and EU there is a risk that existing payments from British companies, including pension and insurance companies, to those living within the European Economic Area could be disrupted or even made impossible. Of course, this would be a major inconvenience to many UK expats.”
Check financial strategies
“Against this chaotic backdrop it is prudent that British expats in the EU consider reviewing their personal financial strategies sooner rather than later with a cross-border financial expert. This will help best position them not only to mitigate the risks of a no-deal Brexit, but also to enable them to take advantage of potential opportunities that may arise.”
“Unfortunately, a smooth and orderly exit of the EU is looking increasingly unlikely and this can be expected to hit the finances of many expats.
“They should seek to make their financial strategies ‘no deal Brexit’ proof.”
deVere Group provides financial and banking services to expats around the world.