Around 19,000 people move to Ireland from the UK to live each year. If you’re one of them, here’s our guide to the big questions when it comes to sorting the investments and pensions you’ve already built up abroad.
Can I hang on to my existing ISA, investments and pensions?
In general, you can hold on to your existing UK investments. But it’s likely you’ll be unable to continue building them up.
For example, if you had an ISA (or junior ISA, or LISA), you can keep it when you move to Ireland, but further contributions, or new ISAs are not allowed once you’re no longer tax resident in the UK. You’ll also become liable for Irish tax on the gains of any shares or funds you sell from your ISA.
Can I move my existing investments and pensions to Ireland?
Yes, this is generally possible. It’s important to look at each case carefully however, in order to preserve any tax advantages – especially with your pension. HMRC will impose heavy clawback taxes if the transfer is not made in a certain way.
For your pension, you must move your funds into a ‘qualifying recognised overseas pension scheme’ (QROPS).
Back in Ireland, you’re usually free to put the money into an employer-run pension, a PRSA, or a buy-out bond (a fund set up specially to receive the lump sum from a previous pension).
Consider the currency issues
Moving to Ireland from the UK, you’ll have currency transfers to consider. There are two sides to this.
Firstly, there’s the exchange rate and timing of your transfer. Obviously the UK pound to Euro rate in particular has nose-dived in the two years since the Brexit vote, which is bad news for anyone moving sterling into Euros.
And predicting future exchange rates correctly is an impossible task. But by moving your money in chunks you can at least strike an average rate over time.
Secondly, you can control the commission and charges you’re paying. The high street banks offer some of the worst rates.
Online marketplaces such as CurrencyFair drive down the cost of changing your money through better rates and cheaper service fees.
How can I invest now that I’m back in Ireland?
If you’re looking for information on how start investing your money or building a pension in Ireland, you’ve come to the right place. We’d love to help – just get in touch.
Meanwhile, here’s a selection of from our blog which you might find useful.
Small print: Everyone’s circumstances are different. These ideas will give you a starting point but are not tax or financial advice. We recommend taking financial advice (we can help) if you are contemplating moving your investments and pensions to Ireland from overseas.