Expats can be particularly vulnerable to poor financial advice because rules relating to the industry differ from nation to nation, and the products and solutions they can potentially benefit from differ from those they are perhaps used to in the UK. However there’s a certain amount of simple and common-sense due diligence that any expat can do, to ensure their adviser is regulated, qualified, recommended, experienced and independent.
Have you heard of ‘passporting’?
Essentially, it describes the right to conduct financial services across the EEA, based on a single authorisation or approval. An offshore independent financial adviser (or IFA) based in the EEA should therefore be regulated somewhere within Europe; common countries for regulation include Gibraltar, Ireland and Germany because other member states deem them to have the best regulatory practices and procedures.
Where is your financial adviser regulated?
When someone presents themselves to you as a professional financial advice giver, you’re perfectly entitled to question them with regard to their regulatory status. Therefore, if you’re speaking to an IFA, ask them where they’re regulated, and ask for proof. Visit the web pages of the financial services authority in the nation in which they claim to be regulated and double check their registration.
Every country has different rules relating to how qualified an adviser needs to be to gain authorisation therefore, if you’re speaking to a British adviser abroad, you can check their industry education based on the British qualifications they have.
Be careful, however, to ensure your adviser understands financial law and products as they apply to the country in which you are residing. It is all very well being qualified in the UK but if your adviser doesn’t understand the Spanish tax system or rules then they are not going to be of much help.
Also make sure that your adviser is aware of the inter action between financial products purchased in your home country and how these will be treated for taxation purposes in your new country of residence.
If your IFA is good at their job, they are highly likely to have a list of satisfied clients. Take up any offers of references and testimonials to see how well the adviser and their brokerage are respected.
Ask your adviser how long they’ve been qualified and giving advice, and research the company they represent to see how long they’ve been in business and whether they are part of a group or a standalone operation.
Finally ensure that your adviser is independent rather than tied to one financial institution like a bank. An independent adviser will be able to advise from the entire financial market place, whereas a tied adviser will have to make it clear that they can only offer to you products from the bank they work for.
You deserve sound financial advice from a reputable well regulated company. Why not make a call to Fiduciary Wealth and arrange a meeting to see how we can assist you. Call 956 796 911 or email email@example.com for qualified advice.