There are many advantages to placing your savings and investments offshore if you’re an expatriate; for example you can have access to more fund managers who are able to operate more freely and therefore expose your funds to a wider array of opportunities. Depending on where you reside you can save and invest in locations such as the Isle of Man, Guernsey, Jersey or even sometimes Dublin – these have some of the best investor protection regulatory environments in the world. You can benefit from superior investor protection schemes, personal confidentiality, virtually limitless choice of funds, fund managers and financial institutions, you can follow diverse investment paths and ultimately you can maximise your wealth and secure your financial future by going offshore.
As we have however shown, every expatriate’s situation is different and it would depend on your country of residence and your individual personal situation whether a particular offshore opportunity is the right solution for your own specific financial goals. It could be the case that opting for an EU approved savings and investment vehicle better suits you, your circumstances and objectives.
Where you are currently resident and where you plan to be resident in the future and when you retire are all fundamentals to be brought into the decision making process as well. Ultimately you need to be aware that for some expatriates it may be more advantageous for them to invest offshore, and for others it may be more advantageous to choose an EU approved investment vehicle as stated. A qualified international independent adviser will be best placed to discuss your eligibility for either type of investment vehicle before proceeding with any recommendations according to your future objectives and risk profile, if any.
Holding Your Assets
Whichever path you choose to hold your savings and investments – i.e., offshore or onshore/EU approved – as an expatriate you are eligible to affordably and easily establish an investment structure that can hold all your deposits, cash, funds and assets under one tax efficient umbrella. These investment structures are called portfolio bonds or wrappers. Portfolio bonds are available from leading, well-known financial institutions, many of them household names. Within these secure structures you can hold your bank deposits, have a linked visa debit card, currency accounts, equities, bonds, and top performing offshore and onshore funds, even your premium bonds; virtually any asset that is not physical property can be held in such a structure.
If you’re thinking about diversifying your financial assets by perhaps investing with different fund managers, and if you want to find a secure home for your cash deposits allowing you to diversify your holdings even further whilst monitoring overall performance of all assets within your portfolio with your financial adviser’s guidance, this sort of portfolio bond or wrapper structure is definitely worth looking at. They can be structured to allow you protection from the EU Savings Tax Directive as well, which makes them highly attractive and beneficial.
Other advantages include:
- Multicurrency cash accounts with all holdings shown daily in your chosen valuation currency. So you can see your total worth at any time.
- For those of you who already hold any funds or shares, these can easily be transferred into one of these structures. For example, if you hold BT shares or a Fidelity fund then a simple asset transfer means you can hold your investments within the confidential structure of the portfolio bond, and also benefit from paying no capital gains tax (dependent on where you are resident).
- You can buy and sell funds or assets easily, quickly, cost effectively and hassle free simply by sending off a fax signed instruction. No more having to prove who you are or where your money came from each time you want to buy or sell an asset, or move to a better deposit account.
- You can enjoy 100% tax deferred growth each time you make a gain – which means you pay no capital gains tax whilst the monies remain within the portfolio.
- These vehicles are confidential with no tax deducted. You can legitimately avoid the exchange of information requirements that the European Savings Tax Directive may otherwise expose you to, or you can save up to 35% of your gain.
- Once established, such a structure is cost effective and easy to maintain.
- In future years, you could combine the creation of an offshore portfolio bond with a trust structure, and you may find you have a very effective vehicle for inheritance tax planning purposes.
- A portfolio bond can allow you to benefit from institutional fixed deposit rates from leading household names.
- If ever you move back to the UK, certain Portfolio bonds allow you to take a 5% p.a. tax free income for up to 20 years. And what’s more, if structured as a life assurance product, the cost of cover cannot be taken from monies in an Offshore Bond.