ISAs: Individual Savings Accounts if you move abroad

ISAs: Individual Savings Accounts if you move abroad

Are you a UK expat who’s moved overseas but still holds an ISA? If so, you may have questions about where you stand with it. Will you still be able to put money into it? Are you even allowed to keep your ISA open? 

Below we will explore some of these questions in more detail. We will also outline some other options available to you as a non-UK resident.

Can I continue to put money into my ISA?

Once you cease to be a UK resident, you will no longer be eligible to open an ISA. After the tax year of your move begins, you cannot make additional contributions to an existing ISA. Furthermore, if you move and become a non-UK resident, you must promptly inform your ISA provider.

Can I keep my ISA open?

While you can’t contribute to it, keeping your ISA open can provide significant benefits. These encompass diversifying your overall investment portfolio and relishing the peace of mind that arises from knowing some of your money is already invested in a tax-efficient account.

What about tax?

If you decide to withdraw your funds whilst living abroad then you will have to declare this as income in your new country of residence. Tax laws dictate the variation in regulations concerning this matter depending on your location. It’s crucial to consult with a tax adviser to understand the potential impact on your situation.

What are my options?

First of all, one option would be to keep your UK ISA. This would be particularly suitable for expats wishing to return to the UK at some point in their life. You could move it to an Expat led UK ISA product allowing you to consolidate all your UK ISAs into one product. Products like the Novia Global Stocks and Shares ISA allow expats to achieve this whilst also being able to incorporate their investment into their broader Novia accounts.

Depending on where you currently reside, there may be a more viable local solution that offers similar tax benefits to an ISA. If you reside in France, consider exploring the option of opening an Assurance Vie. It serves as a tax-efficient wrapper for investments, tailored for individuals seeking tax efficiency and long-term capital growth.

There’s also the option of a platform-based investment account, which offers you the flexibility of investing in a range of ETFs, mutual funds and other traditional investment vehicles and is accessible from anywhere in the world. This option puts you in the driver’s seat and gives you the option of holding in multiple currencies, and has no exit fees if you need quick access to your funds. 

Finally, you can also look into fixed-term annuities. These offer a safe way to grow your money with fantastic and guaranteed rates of return over a set period of time. It also offers full protection of your original investment. This is a great option for anyone who is concerned about market volatility and values stability and consistency in their investments. 

How can Harrison Brook help?

Here at Harrison Brook we specialise in providing expats with expert financial advice. Navigating the complexities of moving abroad can be a tumultuous affair. We’re here to help you access cross-border investment solutions and manage them efficiently for tax purposes.

We are independent financial advisers, and work on a fee-basis.There are no hidden fees or commissions. We pride ourselves on giving our clients sensible and honest advice. You can read more about us and our ethos here

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