Chorus Financial is an award-winning, privately owned brand based in Spain. Our team have over 30 years combined experience in investing and advising British families on their pensions, savings, investments & tax planning.



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What is the QROPS Scheme in Spain?
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What is the Difference Between a QROPS and a SIPP?

As a British expat residing in Spain, understanding how best to manage your UK pension can be complex. Two schemes often come into conversation when planning for retirement overseas: Qualified Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) and Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP). But what is the difference between a QROPS and a SIPP?

Firstly, QROPS and SIPP are both types of private pension schemes, but they cater to different needs and circumstances.

A QROPS is an overseas pension scheme that meets certain criteria set by HMRC and can receive transfers from UK pensions. This scheme is particularly relevant for British expats who intend to retire abroad, allowing them to consolidate their pensions in one place and potentially benefit from local tax efficiencies.

Conversely, a SIPP is a type of UK-based pension scheme that offers individuals greater control over their investments. SIPPs are known for their flexibility, allowing you to invest in a wider range of assets compared to traditional pension schemes. This makes them suitable for individuals comfortable with making their investment decisions.

The primary difference lies in their geographical focus and taxation. A QROPS can be beneficial for British expats residing in Spain due to potential tax efficiencies under Spanish tax laws. On the other hand, a SIPP, while providing investment flexibility, is still a UK pension and subject to UK taxation, regardless of where you live.

However, since Brexit, the taxation of QROPS for UK residents has become less favourable, making SIPPs more appealing in certain circumstances.

Also, SIPPs can be more cost-effective than QROPS, as the latter often involves higher fees due to the complexities of managing overseas pensions.

But, like all financial decisions, the choice between a QROPS and a SIPP depends on your personal circumstances, including your tax residency, retirement plans, and attitude to investment risk.

Therefore, it’s highly recommended to consult with a financial advisor before deciding. Chorus Financial has a wealth of experience in advising British expats on UK pension schemes and can help guide you through the complex world of QROPS and SIPPs. They can assist you in making an informed decision, ensuring that your UK pension serves your best interests while living in Spain


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