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Tax implications of repatriating QROPS fund and reinvesting

Hello all:

I was living in France when I reached retirement age in 2010, and following some research, I decided to invest my pension funds - totalled about £115K at the time - in a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS). At the time this made a lot of sense because it gave me better access to my money at the time when, in the UK, I would be limited to getting an annuity. I returned to the UK in 2017, but left the QROPS pension fund in place. However, over recent years, the charges - which were a relatively small proportion of the fund at the beginning - have become excessive. I'm now in a position where I can repatriate the fund in full to do with as I wish.

I've been advised that if I do this, I will be liable to tax on the full amount, as it will be charged as income: given my current income, I will be pay 20% on most of the fund. My question is, can I repatriate the fund and immediately reinvest the whole lot in a UK-based scheme on which I can get tax relief? Alternatively, is there another tax-effective way of dealing with the repatriated fund?

Thanks in advance for any advice.


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