Expats from the UK 'much happier abroad'
Professionals from the UK now working abroad are much happier living life as an expat, according to new research.
Lloyds TSB International found that 66 per cent of expats polled were of the opinion that their new life in a foreign country is a drastic improvement on what it used to be like in the UK.
Richard Musty, expatriate banking director of Lloyds TSB International, said that while there are numerous reasons for people to pack up their belongings and relocate overseas, many would agree that one of the driving factors is an enhanced quality of life.
However, as the expert noted, such a decision can never be taken lightly – international relocation is a massive undertaking.
“Anybody moving abroad must have a good understanding of complex issues such as tax status, foreign exchange, local laws and customs; all of which require in-depth research,” Mr Musty was quoted by the Daily Telegraph as saying.
“Employers may not always provide all the guidance needed, meaning potential expats themselves must spend a good deal of time planning ahead of a move, ideally six months if possible.”
Take for example pensions. It has historically been a complex area, especially when it comes to transferring schemes abroad. Given that this is an important financial asset, so to speak, it can be a pressing issue for many expats.
Although a 2005 EU directive overhauled this by making it an automatic right to transfer pensions within Europe – as well as the 2006 Pension Act (from the UK) extending this right to most countries throughout the world – it remains a tricky area.
The best advice is for professionals to seek counsel from a financial expert, preferably one that is well-informed about pensions. Here, expats will be able to get sound guidance that is tailored to their specific needs and circumstances.
As a general rule, for all financial matters, those less than confident with certain aspects of it are advised to seek advice from specialists.