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About Starshollow

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  • Birthday 02/02/1967

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  • Location Starnberg
  • Nationality German
  • Hometown Munich
  • Gender Male
  • Year of birth
  • Interests finance, investment
    Tennis, Golf
    Reading (especially history, but also poems)

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  1. Indian Mutual funds capital gain taxation!

  2. Indian Mutual funds capital gain taxation!

    @neoanderson2009  for German or EU-domiciled funds you would have been correct indeed. With them, any profits are defered for taxation until being capitalized (i.e. when you sell it). At least that was the way until January 2018 with those funds. However, taxation of foreign investment funds followed different rules, as the foreign funds regularly failed to report the necessary huge amount of parameters to the German authorities.  In which case the German tax authorities levy a min. tax based on a simply estimated profit if 6 % per year.        so, if dividends were paid out, the need to be tax-reported definitly. But also in the past foreign investment funds were also prone for some standard taxation on the German side due to lack of proper information to the German authorities on the fund-level. Hence the general taxation issue here.    Cheerio    
  3.   HI MaggieQuigs, thank you for pitching in here and disclosing properly your affiliation with Ottonova. Before I offer some thoughts and criticism below I would like to point out that I am personally a big fan of new development in the insurance world, including some of the insurtecs currently on the market. And there is certainly room in the German health insurance landscape for a more service-friendly and digital health insurance in the long run.   Having said that :-)  :     Quite nice, I am sure. But others do that as specialized brokers like we are there to explain everything to clients and assist them in cases of claims etc.       Cheerio
  4. Indian Mutual funds capital gain taxation!

    just to recap: you hold (and held for many years) foreign investment funds and did not mention them in any German tax declaration for the past years ? If that is correct, you might want to contact a good tax advisor/lawyer sooner rather than later, because you might have involuntarily committed tax evasion/tax fraud.  Foreign investment funds required pre-2018 a rather complicated form of tax assessment under German laws and were therefore usually not a good thing to have.   However, perhaps @PandaMunich can shed some more light on this?   Cheerio  
  5. Rejected by provinzial for disability insurance

    No, doing it all by yourself would not be smart.   Getting a real professional involved who checks the market for you, checks your health information (including patient files from the doctors) and discusses this with selected insurance companies would.   Cheerio  
  6. Rejected by provinzial for disability insurance

        Especially for self-employed, the "Dread Disease" (DD) or "Schwere Krankheiten-Versicherung" from Canada Life can be very valuable. Because it pays out a large amount of money, just like a life insurance, when you come down with one of the 40-odd major and serious illnesses so that you have money available to hire substituties to finish your work/projects, invest in changes into your workspace and what not. the only problem is, that this money is going to run out eventually. So, if you "just" had a heart attack, you may be back to work after a couple of months, just need to hire extra help and do some changes in your work-life-balance. Then the coverage with Canada Life was excellent. But if you suffered a stroke or become otherwise so disabled that you are paralyzed partly, lost your ability to speak and more and thus will never be able to work again as before, then you are better of with a BU (Berufsunfähigkeitsversicherung/occupational disability insurance) that pays a monthly disability pension to you all the way til you reach retirement instead of the income you simply won't be able to generate anymore from work.   To this regards, the highest financial risk for you is losing your ability work for ever or very long: and this can be covered best by a BU.  The DD covers some also important risks, but of minor consequence in comparison...but is still very valuable in many cases (and statistically you are more likely to actually use the DD than the BU).   Cheerio  
  7. Rejected by provinzial for disability insurance

        GEnerally speaking, any psychological problems (especially something that sounds like burn-out or depression) is a big red warning light for insurance companies offering either health insurance or occupational disability insurance. because especially with the latter, a large percentage of disability claims in Germany come from such problems. It is therefore a high-risk for the insurance company and they do not want to cover fire-insurance for a building where the flames are already coming thru the roof (in their opinion). Having said that: a proper independent advisor can help with that. It is total bullshit what your banker said (and a banker is not a qualified insurance advisor anyway) with going to other insurance companies. At the beginning of a new process there should be a selection of really good income-protection insurances on the market for you (and Provinzial is certainly not at the top of this list). Then the advisor should gather together with you info from the doctor (especially a copy of the patient file in order to make sure one knows what the good doctor actually wrote in his file, which may be quite different from what he has been telling you verbally). Based on that a good advisor will then do a preliminar risk assessment inquiry with several good insurance companies in order to find the best solution for you. Or, if your patient file's results make this currently impossible, one would look for alternatives which still give you some good coverage against other medical problems outside of psychological ones (like a critical illness/dread disease coverage or a "Grundfähigkeiten"-coverage). if you do not know what different kinds of income protection insurance there are available on the Germany market, read here for a better overview:   So, the long and short of it is: get yourself a real professional and independent insurance advisor to assist you with this. people working for a bank are usually acting like tied agents only and have too little actual knowhow about insurance matters.   Cheerio  
  8. Warning: there are a couple of unregulated "financial advisors" active again in targetting Expats living in Germany (and other EU-countries, of course, too) by LinkedIn, Emails and cold-calling in order to sell them QROPS-transfers and other investment/pension plan-based advice. This warning concerns: Magnitude Wealth Ltd ( )  who claim to be working out of the Czech Republik Peter Alexander Wealth Management ( )  who appear to be working out of Spain, now Proctor Wealth Associates ( ) who appear to be working out of the Netherlands with offices in UK and CH   These outfits or persons claim all to be acting under the license of the Trafalgar International GmbH based in Frankfurt. Their claim is wrong - they are not entitled to state that they are under German license and regulation! Therefore do not engage with them as long as they do not have proper license to act as financial advisors/insurance intermediaries!   Here are now the facts for everyone who is being contacted with them, has been contacted or (heaven forbid) has actually done business with such companies or persons:   1. Trafalgar International GmbH is licensed in Germany as an insurance broker. Insurance advice under German laws includes of course pension plans. It does not include general investment advice. Trafalgar International GmbH is currently not licensed anymore in Germany to offer investment advice.    2. Trafalgar International GmbH also has received passporting rights (according to the public registry DIHK) for all EU-memberstates plus is licensed themselves to run establishments/offices under their name in  Cypres and Spain   Any advice conducted directly by Trafalgar either in Germany or cross-border is therefore covered by their license (which includes, among other things, coverage by their legally required indemnity insurance in cases of malpractice as well as access to German Ombudsman etc).   However, it is legally not possible to let independent third parties/legal entities in other countries act or work under the license by Trafalgar.   I had filed my first complaint against this with the responsible regulatory authority for Trafalgar International GmbH, the IHK Frankfurt, in 2015 already. After my first complaint at least the German license as financial advisor for investments suddenly vanished out of the DIHK registry.   My newest complaint to the IHK Frankfurt, which included screenshots from the website of the above-mentioned companies AND copies of emails some of them sent to clients who are residents in Germany is still be working on by the IHK. My hope is that due to numerous infrictions of the relevant laws and regulations the IHK will finally take a serious hard stance towards Trafalgar International GmbH itself. Be that as it may (and while waiting for the chips to fall), the IHK has confirmed to me that none of the above mentioned companies can rightfully claim to be acting under the German license from Trafalgar:   So, it is evident and without any doubt that, barring other local licenses these companies/IFAs can get in CZ or ES or NL, they cannot offer advice in those countries or then even again crossing borders into other EU-countries based on their acclaimed "license" by Trafalgar. This was always clear to anyone who reads the relevant EU regulations and laws (plus the German ones, too), but finally, it is official now.   As many investors in Spain who entrusted their life-savings to Continental Wealth Management in Spain (who also claimed to be acting under the license of Trafalgar International GmbH according to their website and documents) in the past found out to their dismay after Continental Wealth Management went belly up: since such companies are not regulated, there are also no institutions/regulatory bodies responsible for any claims or filing of malpractice etc. And there is also no indemnity insurance in place that will cover such rightfull claims. In the end, you have neither a recourse to the Ombudsman in your country of residence where you received the "advice" nor in the country, the IFA claims to have his seat/place of business nor with Trafalgar in Germany and the German institutions.   Therefore anyone interacting with the above-mentioned companies does so at his or her own peril, I am afraid (and usually not being aware of that).   Anyone in Germany who has been approached by those companies should, in my opinion, send a quick letter or email to the IHK Frankfurt with a request to clarify how and why these companies/IFA can still claim to be advising under the license of Trafalgar in order to increase the pressure on the IHK Frankfurt to actively seek and end of this.   Cheerio  
  9. Bemessungsgrenzen Question

    which insurance are you relating to? what is your exact gross salary and what are you paying for it per month?   Cheerio  
  10.   correct. you need to contact AOK, inform them of your change of occupational status. They will then ask you for an estimate of income so that they can calculate the premiums accordingly.   You also would have now the right to choose private health insurance instead. If that would make any sense for you or not is a complex question with loads of hidden traps and loopholes and a decision should not be made lightly (and not just because private health insurance is soooo much "cheaper", either).  Professional advice here is also strongly recommended.   Cheerio    
  11.     as others have already pointed out: it does not work that way! You can get an insurance to cover something that has already happened. Just like you can't get a fire-insurance anymore for your house when the flames are already breaking thru the rooftop or get a health insurance after you have been diagnosed with cancer you can't get a legal insurance to cover something like this ex post. Any insurance is set up and paid for in order to cover potential uncertain risks in the future. Not to pay little premiums for a big case/claim that is already in the making. And that is a common principle all around the world with insurances and not bound to nationality, race or sexual orientation or anything :-)   Cheerio  
  12. Hi Joe, while this has been discussed indeed in numerous threads here on Toytown in the past, the issues at hand are always different, hence it is only fair to start a new one :-)   The first and most important question here is: where are you located or rather, where are you going to apply for your VISA/residence permit? Because each city, each county or municipality has their own and sometimes very different rules which they apply to the question as to what exact amount you need to cover as adequate pension capital and how.   Berlin has among the most complex and detailed regulations on this. Munich is much more relaxed. Different kind of pension plans, different amounts required (Berlin: 175k, Munich only 100k).   Pension plans from abroad and "other assets" can be indeed get recognized. But it means jumping thru loads of hoops, getting pension plan details translated into German and more. And even then it is not certain (and depending on location again) if it will be recognized or not.  Reason is that some Ausländeramt will only ever accept something where you have no right or choice to take out any cash before retirement from these resources, sometimes even after starting retirement (i.e. you need to have an annuity for life).    It is therefore usually far easier to set up a new private pension plan in line with the local requirements. What kind of plan that is gonna be and what financial burden in the form of monthly contributions that will put on you is again depending on your location in Germany.   A qualified and specialized Expat advisor can assist you with this for sure. Several of which are advertising here on Toytown and have thus a proven track-record you can rely on.   Cheerio  
  13. Dreadful Disease Insurance - Experience and Suggestions

    there are many different forms of income protection available in Germany. Which one is best suited for you depends on a large number of parameters that lie in your own life, your work, your income situation etc.   I would strongly advise you get an independent expert and advisor on board here to make sure that you get something in the end that is custom tailored to your needs. It is also important for any comparison of insurance plans to take an in-depth look into the terms&conditons of an insurance plan. Again, this is something better left to a professional to advise you. And since there are no price differences (if you chose a commission-paid plan, that is - but there are not many fee-based plans on the market yet there anyway), you are far better off in taking independent advice because you then have someone to hold liable for the advice, actually.   If you do not yet understand the difference between a Berufsunfähigkeitsversicherung (occupational disability insurance with monthly pension payments) to a Schwere-Krankheitenversicherung (dread disease or critical illness coverage with a lump-sum one-time payout), you can read a bit more about this here on our website:   Cheerio  
  14. Investing for Retirement for US/Austrian couple in their 20s

      Hi Joseph, with an US-national as a partner/spouse, you guys are facing a couple of taxation issues on both sides of the Atlantic that can make setting up a sustainable strategy that works in both worlds. First of all: while it makes sense to start some pension planning when young (especially due to the effect of compound interest over time), actual investing into pension plans/pension insurances should just be one part of the total investment strategy. A reasonable share of your savings should also be invested into simple but efficient investment tools like passive investment funds (ETFs; Dimensional Funds etc). However, herein lies the first problem: since you need to file for taxes in the US, too, you need to avoid any German or EU domiciled investment funds and only invest into US-domiciled ones, otherwise, you'll face nightmarish costs when it comes to reporting PFIC investments to the IRS. Since many US-banks and platforms are reluctant to accept non-resident clients anymore, finding the right solution here requires some professional and experienced input. Investing into Roth IRAs will offer you no tax advantage in Germany, where you actually pay your taxes.  Depending on whether you guys are employees or self-employed, there are a couple of options that can offer you tax benefits in Germany. If those options make any sense for you in a long-term-perspective needs to be analyzed and discussed. There are also - albeit very, very few - suitable offshore solutions for globally mobile folks like you. the vast majority of offshore pension plans are heavily burdened with upfront commission costs and intransparent further commission and administration fees and should be avoided. But there are some plans out there - even custom tailored to US-nationals - that are fee-based only (i.e. no direct or hidden commission costs) and come with transparent cost structures and also allow investing into US-domiciled funds.   However, as John_g pointed out correctly above: the very first step is to have your existing insurance coverage checked professionally and make sure all the main risks in life are properly covered. You do not need to be over-insured...but you certainly do not want to find out that you are under-insured if something hits you can cause serious financial shortfalls that derail your investment/pension planning while it could have been easily avoided at little costs and just a wee bit of due diligence beforehand.   Several professional advisors are advertising here on Toytown and/or have established a track record for the quality and independence of their advice over many years here... which means they are the right choice for Expats, as the normal German advisor lacks curcial special knowlegde often while some of the "Expat advisor firms" on the market just want to sell you overly expensive offshore pension plans and investment bonds and what not.... nothing of which is in your best interest.   Also make sure you'll understand the difference between how insurances (especially pension insurances) are being sold in Germany to consumers so that you  can pick the kind of advisor for you, who both legally and ethically bound is going to work in your best interest only!   Cheerio
  15. Interesting complaint blog about TCTMNBN (DeVere )

      Hell no... !    I will see what the local authorities are doing this time. Currently the German company (a GmbH) has only a license for insurance broker. Which, while it does entitle them to offer pension insurance advice, too (which is a real pity), it does not allow them to offer investment advice. What's more: the individual advisors, since they are not employed with a gross salary by TCTMNBN but rather work on commission base only, have to have their own insurance advice license. Which, of course, none of them have because they would not be considered qualified under German law anyway.   Cheerio