UK Pensions


The Qualifying Non-UK Pension Scheme (QNUPS) came into existence as a means to rectify a mistake made in the 2004 Finance Act, this mistake meant that money placed in QROPS would be subjected to UK in heritance tax in the event of the holders death. Now, with a QNUPS, any money transferred into the scheme will be free from all UK inheritance tax.

To set up a QNUPS you must meet the same criteria as a QROPS - the QNUPS must be set up abroad, the country in which it is set up must regulate it as a pension and recognise it in terms of tax.

The QNUPS does not require a Double Taxation Agreement between the jurisdiction in which the QNUPS is taken and the UK, if said jurisdiction is out of the European Economic Area. This is because the QNUPS does not require any reports to be made back to HMRC.

As of 6 April 2012 the HMRC introduced new rules regarding the recognition of QROPS jurisdictions and reporting. Holborn Assets have reviewed these new rules with our legal representatives and in-house QROPS/QNUPS experts and are entirely satisfied we can continue to provide QROPS and QNUPS to expatriates.

The main benefits of a QNUPS are:

  • No restrictions on age and investing, you are allowed to continue investing money into the QNUPS after your date of retirement.
  • Contributions can be made from any source, not just income.
  • There is no limit on how much money you can invest.
  • QNUPS can be set so that they allow the holder to avoid any local wealth or death taxes that may be in their area.
  • QNUPS bypasses succession and inheritance tax, giving you total freedom over your inheritance pot and where it goes.
  • QNUPS and QROPS can be held in tandem and still not have reporting liabilities, as long as the QNUPS has its own assets.
  • Income can be deferred until age 75.

Another bonus associated with the QNUPS is the freedom it gives your trustees. Providing that the QNUPS has no assets that were previously in an authorised UK pension they will be under no obligation to report any information to HMRC.

At the present time it is not possible to transfer a UK pension directly to a QNUPS - currently the only way to do this is by transferring to a QROPS, and then once outside of the UK for five years, arrange for an onward transfer to the QNUPS.

This, however, is on the proviso that the QROPS provider is permitted to do that as many will only transfer to another QROPS due to the regulatory/scheme-imposed rules.

To ensure you receive the maximum benefit from using QROPS or QNUPS, please talk to a qualified Holborn Assets adviser today.