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  1. UK Private Pension - tax free lump sum

    I moved to Germany twenty years ago and now have dual UK/German citizenship.  I pay German taxes but nothing in the UK.   However, I have 2 separate private pensions in the UK, from my earlier employment there, which should start to pay out this year. Both offer an initial "Tax Free" lump sum.  But would that also be regarded as Tax Free in Germany?   The helpdesk of the pension trustees for the larger of the two, have told me that it should be tax free, even in Germany. However, a couple of years ago I spoke with a representative of Abbey Wealth about possibly moving the main pension to a QROPS, and he told me that the lump sum would definitely be treated as income by the German tax authority, and taxed accordingly.   Does anyone know for certain one way or the other?
  2. I recieve Austrian, German and UK state pensions. My UK pension is almost a full pension as I have paid 32 years contributions, however most of those contributions were Class II voluntary contributions. I pay the usual 7,3% health insurance and 3,3% care insurance to my Krankenkasse from both my UK and Austrian pensions and it is automatically deducted from my German pension. Now someone on a UK forum has suggested that my UK pension entitles me to free health insurance from the AOK. Does anyone know anything about this?
  3. I am a USA/German dual citizen and I lived and worked in Germany Between 2015 and 2019. I recently moved to the UK. Therefore I spent 4 years paying German state pension insurance through my employer.   I know that it takes a minimum of 5 years (20 months) of contributions to become vested in the pension system and since I am below that, I can request to have my contributions refunded, so I'm wondering if that makes sense for me.     1. Would I get the full reimbursement for my contributions? 2. Could I go back to Germany, work for one more year and become vested? 3. What determines how much someone receives after pension age?     Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
  4. I have recently become aware of apparent post-Brexit loss of options on what non UK residents can do with any fund in a UK private pension scheme. The only option I am now offered by Standard Life in the UK is a complete cash payout in one go - there is no longer any option for UK annuity purchase, transfer to a drawdown account or anything else of that kind for non UK residents. From my research so far it seems that other UK companies are saying the same. The amount involved for me is relatively small (well under 100K). From what I can see, the following could be my options Take the cash payout in the UK with whatever tax implications (I can work out the normal UK tax due but am not sure how that works through into German tax via the double taxation agreement) Transfer it to a QROPS - I have found a German company that specialises in this. Not sure the implications of this if what I really then want is some kind of immediate Sofortrente or such equivalent to a UK fixed term annuity. Transfer it to an International SIPP - don't know anything much about that .. Similarly as 2) what I really want etc   Any comments, experiences, advice welcome  
  5. Riester-Rente for American Expats

    So I've combed through these forms reading all I can about pension planning for American expats here in Germany and haven't been able to decide on a suitable direction. I've also e-mailed @Starshollow's company for advice (after reading this thread: but I'm curious if any other fellow Americans have come across this.   I'm a 30 year old who has been living here for exactly 5 years now, paying into state pension the entire time. I work full-time as a web developer for a German company and near the end of next year (2018) I'll be up for permanent residency on my blue card (I've only had this since Feb 2016). We do have a company pension here, my employer contributes a maximum of 35€ and we do the rest per month, and it's offered through either Allianz or Zurich. I have an appointment with someone from Zurich in the future to discuss options. The thing is, everything I've read has scared the crap out of me. It almost seems as though depending entirely on this for retirement is a huge mistake and I'm not sure I'm willing to take the risk. I just want to throw my arms up at this point and settle for a savings account that I put 100-300€ in a month. Though I know that probably won't be a good idea either. It seems after reading the above thread that the best option is a Riester-Rente "ungezillmerten". But then after feeling quite satisfied with my discovery, I also found that a.) They are few and far between and b.) not offered to American citizens thanks to FATCA and FBAR. Is this really the case? Has anyone found (what they believe to be) a working solution?