Is It Possible For A UK Pension Transfer To Australia If The Scheme Is Already In Payment?

Posted by Simon Harvey on 23/11/09 14:01

Each year migrants, who have migrated to Australia, look at the possibilities surrounding a UK pension transfer to Australia for their accrued UK funds. For migrants, that have yet to draw on their UK pension funds, a pension transfer to Australia – providing the receiving scheme is registered as a Qualifying Recognized Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS), is a very real possibility.

 

However, UK based independent financial advisers, Global QROPS Ltd (specialists in advice on pension transfers to Australia), often get asked whether a pension in payment can be transferred to Australia.

 

For UK migrants settling in Australia, pensions that are being paid to them in the form of an annuity or by way of an employer’s final salary scheme pension payment, a transfer of their benefits to a QROPS are not possible. However, for those funds in drawdown (commonly known as unsecured pension since April 2006) a transfer of these benefits to an Australian QROPS  can still happen.

 

One of the main attractions of an Australian scheme is the tax free lump sum benefits that are available. If an individual is looking to take those types of benefits from an Australian superannuation scheme – in respect of their UK pension transfer in – they would need to have been overseas from the UK for 5 complete UK tax years first. In the meantime, if they took their UK pension benefits via an Australian pension scheme, they would have to do so in line with UK legislation.