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UK banks and brokers after Brexit

Financial discussion for any financial queries for Expats
Spet0789
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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364171

Postby Spet0789 » December 8th, 2020, 6:11 pm

Lootman wrote:
Spet0789 wrote:
Lootman wrote:Why would that be affected?

Although it is very unlikely I would ever need to take on debt again.

It is conventional when lending against a property to want to know where it is.

They would know where the property was. They just would not know where I was.


Banks tend to distinguish between owner-occupier mortgages and investment mortgages. Again, I would have thought that you knew that.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364172

Postby Spet0789 » December 8th, 2020, 6:17 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:
stevensfo wrote:It remains to be seen what exactly will change.

You asked, what has changed. What has changed is Brexit. The UK is now outside the EU. That is what is causing these banking & brokerage & etc issues. These and many other things are real changes, happening now.

The remedy for that is what Steve suggested earlier: That when relocating from the UK to Italy (or wherever), one should retain a valid UK address for mail purposes. Absent any notification, each UK financial entity that you deal with will just assume that you are a UK resident, and the service will continue as normal.

Our hypothetical expat will also have an address in Italy, which will serve for all his Italian financial needs. Neither set of financial entities will be aware of the other set, as long as you are careful to keep them demarcated.

This strategy is already useful to avoid the problem mentioned in the other TLF topic cited earlier, that UK banks and brokers may not want to continue servicing an expat anyway, EU or not.

I do not believe that any law is being broken by doing this, just maybe the terms and conditions of each institution. With care that would never be discovered. I assume here that declarations made for tax purposes do not bleed into files held by institutions - that seems unlikely since tax returns are considered confidential.

In which case the main effect of Brexit is that people who move around a lot are more likely to keep quiet about where they live, and maintain parallel addresses (not residences).


That will work, except where countries have passed laws requiring banks to ascertain the tax residency of their clients. In that case your hypothetical individual will either have to lie or to ‘fess up and risk losing one of their accounts.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364179

Postby Lootman » December 8th, 2020, 6:35 pm

Spet0789 wrote:
Lootman wrote:
Spet0789 wrote:It is conventional when lending against a property to want to know where it is.

They would know where the property was. They just would not know where I was.

Banks tend to distinguish between owner-occupier mortgages and investment mortgages.

But it is not always a clear bright line. For instance in the case of the OP, it sounds like this was his residence when he lived in the UK and got his mortgage.

I have fudged this with lenders a couple of times over the years and my experience was that lenders generally don't care as long as you keep up with payments. An insurer has a better case for knowing than a lender in my view.

Spet0789 wrote:That will work, except where countries have passed laws requiring banks to ascertain the tax residency of their clients. In that case your hypothetical individual will either have to lie or to ‘fess up and risk losing one of their accounts.

Again, such a question is typically asked when you open an account and, in the situation described, the accounts are already open. The issue is to avoid them being closed.

But yes, if the sin of omission bothers your conscience then don't do it and accept that your accounts will be closed against your will.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364180

Postby dspp » December 8th, 2020, 6:35 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:
stevensfo wrote:It remains to be seen what exactly will change.

You asked, what has changed. What has changed is Brexit. The UK is now outside the EU. That is what is causing these banking & brokerage & etc issues. These and many other things are real changes, happening now.


The remedy for that is .........

Our hypothetical expat will also have an address in Italy, which will serve for all his Italian financial needs. Neither set of financial entities will be aware of the other set, as long as you are careful to keep them demarcated.


Data sharing between regulatory authorities is increasing. Swiss private banking is no longer quite so private. I'm sure you have nothing to hide, but behaviours of the sort you are proposing are going to draw ever-increasing attention.

- dspp

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364183

Postby Lootman » December 8th, 2020, 6:38 pm

dspp wrote:
Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:You asked, what has changed. What has changed is Brexit. The UK is now outside the EU. That is what is causing these banking & brokerage & etc issues. These and many other things are real changes, happening now.

The remedy for that is .........

Our hypothetical expat will also have an address in Italy, which will serve for all his Italian financial needs. Neither set of financial entities will be aware of the other set, as long as you are careful to keep them demarcated.

Data sharing between regulatory authorities is increasing. Swiss private banking is no longer quite so private. I'm sure you have nothing to hide, but behaviours of the sort you are proposing are going to draw ever-increasing attention.

Perhaps although in that case Brexit might actually mitigate against such data sharing.

There is also the problem of how you sync up the Italian John Smith and the British John Smith, when they have different addresses, NINs and so on.

But anyway it is not like I am suggesting fraud. There is no financial gain or tax saving to anyone who does this. Just an administrative convenience. And if you get caught all that happens is that your account is closed, and that would have happened anyway had you told them upfront.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364185

Postby dspp » December 8th, 2020, 6:43 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:
Lootman wrote:The remedy for that is .........

Our hypothetical expat will also have an address in Italy, which will serve for all his Italian financial needs. Neither set of financial entities will be aware of the other set, as long as you are careful to keep them demarcated.

Data sharing between regulatory authorities is increasing. Swiss private banking is no longer quite so private. I'm sure you have nothing to hide, but behaviours of the sort you are proposing are going to draw ever-increasing attention.

Perhaps although in that case Brexit might actually mitigate against such data sharing.

There is also the problem of how you sync up the Italian John Smith and the British John Smith, when they have different addresses, NINs and so on.

But anyway it is not like I am suggesting fraud. There is no financial gain or tax saving to anyone who does this. Just an administrative convenience. And if you get caught all that happens is that your account is closed, and that would have happened anyway had you told them upfront.


When the forms quite clearly ask where is your domicile, and what is your permanent residential address, and confirmation is required periodically (for example I had to confirm my II personal data was fully up to date earlier this week), it is going to be very difficult to act in the way you are describing whilst remaining both legal & honest. Surely you are not advocating acting in any other way ?

- dspp

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364187

Postby Lootman » December 8th, 2020, 6:51 pm

dspp wrote:
Lootman wrote:Perhaps although in that case Brexit might actually mitigate against such data sharing.

There is also the problem of how you sync up the Italian John Smith and the British John Smith, when they have different addresses, NINs and so on.

But anyway it is not like I am suggesting fraud. There is no financial gain or tax saving to anyone who does this. Just an administrative convenience. And if you get caught all that happens is that your account is closed, and that would have happened anyway had you told them upfront.

When the forms quite clearly ask where is your domicile, and what is your permanent residential address, and confirmation is required periodically (for example I had to confirm my II personal data was fully up to date earlier this week), it is going to be very difficult to act in the way you are describing whilst remaining both legal & honest. Surely you are not advocating acting in any other way ?

I don't believe that I have ever been asked for my domicile, only residency.

As for addresses, this of interest to me because all my post goes to a post office box, something I have done for 15 years now, and without a problem. In my experience banks do not actually ask for a permanent residential address. They just ask for an address. And I have always interpreted that as asking for a postal address. Why would my bank need to know where I live (assuming I am in the UK, which I am)?

Yes, periodic requests for you to confirm personal data do happen. I have also noticed that with ii and others. However I most notice that in relation to questions about whether you are a US person, a request that reflects US FACTA legislation. Absent that then you are generally just confirming contact details, and those do not change in Steve's scenario.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364224

Postby dspp » December 8th, 2020, 8:48 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:
Lootman wrote:Perhaps although in that case Brexit might actually mitigate against such data sharing.

There is also the problem of how you sync up the Italian John Smith and the British John Smith, when they have different addresses, NINs and so on.

But anyway it is not like I am suggesting fraud. There is no financial gain or tax saving to anyone who does this. Just an administrative convenience. And if you get caught all that happens is that your account is closed, and that would have happened anyway had you told them upfront.

When the forms quite clearly ask where is your domicile, and what is your permanent residential address, and confirmation is required periodically (for example I had to confirm my II personal data was fully up to date earlier this week), it is going to be very difficult to act in the way you are describing whilst remaining both legal & honest. Surely you are not advocating acting in any other way ?

I don't believe that I have ever been asked for my domicile, only residency.

As for addresses, this of interest to me because all my post goes to a post office box, something I have done for 15 years now, and without a problem. In my experience banks do not actually ask for a permanent residential address. They just ask for an address. And I have always interpreted that as asking for a postal address. Why would my bank need to know where I live (assuming I am in the UK, which I am)?

Yes, periodic requests for you to confirm personal data do happen. I have also noticed that with ii and others. However I most notice that in relation to questions about whether you are a US person, a request that reflects US FACTA legislation. Absent that then you are generally just confirming contact details, and those do not change in Steve's scenario.


I think you'll find banks & brokers will start fine-tuning to obey compliance. On ii they are very clear:

- Permanent Address
- Country Of Birth
- Nationality
- Country of residence for tax purposes
- Tax Identification Number Type
- Tax Identification Number
- National Identifier Type
- UK National Insurance Number [etc]

Not much ambiguity there.

The "oops I didn't understand" and the "oops I moved but forgot to tell you" and the "oops that's another variation of my many names" reasons for being less than forthcoming are going to become smaller and smaller chinks to crawl through. Which is as it should be, because those of us who pay taxes would quite like to share that obligation with everybody.

And this, combined with Brexit, is why the OP is asking the question about brokerages and banks after Brexit. And the more people who try to evade [not looking at anyone in particular] the faster and harder the screws will tighten.

- dspp

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364225

Postby Lootman » December 8th, 2020, 8:56 pm

dspp wrote:I think you'll find banks & brokers will start fine-tuning to obey compliance. The more people who try to evade the faster and harder the screws will tighten.

I can only comment on how things are now, and not on how they may be in the future.

And right now it appears that banks etc. engage in only trivial due diligence and accept at face value what you tell them. So I do not think there is currently a legal issue here, but rather a moral one.

So should we lie? No. Should we be economical with the truth when various entities are conspiring to mess with us? That is a highly subjective decision for each individual to make. I am not advising; merely outlining options. And might a better question not be this? Why are governments and institutions making up rules that motivate people to lie to them?

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364236

Postby dspp » December 8th, 2020, 9:29 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:I think you'll find banks & brokers will start fine-tuning to obey compliance. The more people who try to evade the faster and harder the screws will tighten.

I can only comment on how things are now, and not on how they may be in the future.

And right now it appears that banks etc. engage in only trivial due diligence and accept at face value what you tell them. So I do not think there is currently a legal issue here, but rather a moral one.

So should we lie? No. Should we be economical with the truth when various entities are conspiring to mess with us? That is a highly subjective decision for each individual to make. I am not advising; merely outlining options. And might a better question not be this? Why are governments and institutions making up rules that motivate people to lie to them?


Those are the actual text taken from my own ii account this evening. My HSBC bank account is rather similar. If you want to search out a sleepier bank/broker with fuzzier/dated text then that is your own decision. I have to talk to compliance people in banks for professional reasons (not just EU matters) and there are many subtle webs being woven out there.

Laws are simply the codification of the morals of a society at a time, both are important, as and even more so are underlying principles. We reveal who we are by how we choose.

Right now this is getting more difficult for the Brits because Brexit. That was the OP's question.

- dspp

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364276

Postby torata » December 8th, 2020, 11:43 pm

Lootman wrote:And right now it appears that banks etc. engage in only trivial due diligence and accept at face value what you tell them. So I do not think there is currently a legal issue here, but rather a moral one.


Yes, they probably will accept at face value because that discharges their KYC duty. It's when they pass that info to the relevant tax authorities and details don't match up that things could start to take a more legal turn

torata

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364454

Postby Lootman » December 9th, 2020, 2:53 pm

torata wrote:
Lootman wrote:And right now it appears that banks etc. engage in only trivial due diligence and accept at face value what you tell them. So I do not think there is currently a legal issue here, but rather a moral one.

Yes, they probably will accept at face value because that discharges their KYC duty. It's when they pass that info to the relevant tax authorities and details don't match up that things could start to take a more legal turn

Nobody was suggesting being anything other than scrupulous with one's tax reporting. That is a separate issue from what address your bank has on file for you for postal purposes. And plenty of people have more than one address that they use anyway.

I am not aware that banks etc. routinely pass on information about your account to the taxman, other than upon request. As far as i know even consolidated tax certificates are not routinely sent to HMRC. And of course things like current accounts do not provide any income and so would have nothing to share anyway.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364462

Postby dspp » December 9th, 2020, 3:02 pm

Lootman wrote:
torata wrote:
Lootman wrote:And right now it appears that banks etc. engage in only trivial due diligence and accept at face value what you tell them. So I do not think there is currently a legal issue here, but rather a moral one.

Yes, they probably will accept at face value because that discharges their KYC duty. It's when they pass that info to the relevant tax authorities and details don't match up that things could start to take a more legal turn

Nobody was suggesting being anything other than scrupulous with one's tax reporting. That is a separate issue from what address your bank has on file for you for postal purposes. And plenty of people have more than one address that they use anyway.

I am not aware that banks etc. routinely pass on information about your account to the taxman, other than upon request. As far as i know even consolidated tax certificates are not routinely sent to HMRC. And of course things like current accounts do not provide any income and so would have nothing to share anyway.


Well, now you are aware. They do.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publicati ... -collected

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.u ... olders.pdf

- dspp

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364465

Postby Lootman » December 9th, 2020, 3:04 pm

dspp wrote:
Lootman wrote:
torata wrote:Yes, they probably will accept at face value because that discharges their KYC duty. It's when they pass that info to the relevant tax authorities and details don't match up that things could start to take a more legal turn

Nobody was suggesting being anything other than scrupulous with one's tax reporting. That is a separate issue from what address your bank has on file for you for postal purposes. And plenty of people have more than one address that they use anyway.

I am not aware that banks etc. routinely pass on information about your account to the taxman, other than upon request. As far as i know even consolidated tax certificates are not routinely sent to HMRC. And of course things like current accounts do not provide any income and so would have nothing to share anyway.

Well, now you are aware. They do.

Even if they do, so what? In the scenario cited, the only address used for UK financial stuff is the UK address you have chosen to use. So it will all sync up. As long as you are honest about your taxes then there is no concern.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364471

Postby dspp » December 9th, 2020, 3:26 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:
Lootman wrote:Nobody was suggesting being anything other than scrupulous with one's tax reporting. That is a separate issue from what address your bank has on file for you for postal purposes. And plenty of people have more than one address that they use anyway.

I am not aware that banks etc. routinely pass on information about your account to the taxman, other than upon request. As far as i know even consolidated tax certificates are not routinely sent to HMRC. And of course things like current accounts do not provide any income and so would have nothing to share anyway.

Well, now you are aware. They do.

Even if they do, so what? In the scenario cited, the only address used for UK financial stuff is the UK address you have chosen to use. So it will all sync up. As long as you are honest about your taxes then there is no concern.


The original poster (OP) is asking why many UK banks/brokerages are withdrawing from offering services to clients in EU countries, even to UK nationals.

Many here have explained that this is due to Brexit and the UK no longer being a member of the EU, and so UK businesses having to make cost/benefit decisions about whether they offer such services, and so many banks/brokerages withdrawing from that market.

You have raised the objection of "how would the EU govs and/or banks/brokers know", in other words individuals can just go ahead and open/operate accounts without disclosing all of their details to the bank/broker/gov. It has been pointed out to you that increasingly the banks/brokers (and govs) are becoming increasingly picky about how they phrase the disclosure statements, and that as a result individuals either fully comply, or lie, and that there is (or soon will be) zero grey area where one might not lie, and still avoid disclosure.

Furthermore it has been explained to you that banks/brokers must, and do, share information with EU and non-EU govs, and that the govs share information between each other. Even if you were not aware this was the case, you most certainly are aware now.

So .... it seems the OP's question has been answered, and that indeed the OP will struggle to achieve the same level of service in the post-Brexit world.

Or am I missing something and you do have a practical solution for the OP ?

- dspp

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364500

Postby Lootman » December 9th, 2020, 4:52 pm

dspp wrote:Or am I missing something and you do have a practical solution for the OP ?

I do not know if the OP considers his question to be answered. My comments were based on a practical idea suggested by a couple of other Lemons earlier about how maintaining a UK address for postal purposes might mitigate the problem that governments and institutions are imposing on those who wish to live in another country for a while, but later wish to return to the UK.

As far as I know nobody has cited a UK law that is being broken by doing that, assuming no financial or tax advantage is attempted thereby. There is a moral question over the validity of telling white lies or engaging in the sin of omission. And people will vary on how they assess that.

If I were the OP I would appreciate being given multiple ideas and solutions so that I can make a choice. If as you suggest then everything has been said on the matter than I am happy to leave it there.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364513

Postby stevensfo » December 9th, 2020, 5:22 pm

Lootman wrote:
dspp wrote:Or am I missing something and you do have a practical solution for the OP ?

I do not know if the OP considers his question to be answered. My comments were based on a practical idea suggested by a couple of other Lemons earlier about how maintaining a UK address for postal purposes might mitigate the problem that governments and institutions are imposing on those who wish to live in another country for a while, but later wish to return to the UK.

As far as I know nobody has cited a UK law that is being broken by doing that, assuming no financial or tax advantage is attempted thereby. There is a moral question over the validity of telling white lies or engaging in the sin of omission. And people will vary on how they assess that.

If I were the OP I would appreciate being given multiple ideas and solutions so that I can make a choice. If as you suggest then everything has been said on the matter than I am happy to leave it there.


dspp wrote:Or am I missing something and you do have a practical solution for the OP ?


A practical solution is to be totally honest with taxes, but strive to maintain an address in the UK as well as in Italy. By the way, just to put it into perspective, this problem with UK banks closing accounts of those not in the UK actually predates Brexit by decades and has always been a choice that they make for their own convenience. Thus, for 'our' own convenience, we may choose to maintain accounts in other countries, taking care not to break any laws, while observing our own rules on privacy and judgments on who should know our exact location and why.

I am sure that Jacob Rees-Mogg (Somerset Investments) and James Dyson (over-priced vacuum cleaners) have no serious problems with their offices in Singapore, so what's the problem with some law-abiding plebs who were very happy going about their business and just want to continue with a quiet life?

Steve

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364520

Postby Lootman » December 9th, 2020, 5:36 pm

stevensfo wrote:A practical solution is to be totally honest with taxes, but strive to maintain an address in the UK as well as in Italy.

One issue that might arise with the "use a UK address for all UK financial dealings" idea is which address do you use if you have to submit a UK self-assessment tax return?

If you use your UK address then everything will sync up. But it might look odd to the taxman if you are claiming non-residency in the UK whilst providing a UK address on your tax return.

Might the taxman not assume that you are really resident in the UK if you provide a UK address? Whilst if you use your Italian address in your tax return then that will not sync up with the UK address your UK bank has for you.

If you have no UK tax liability then that problem would be moot, but the OP said he has UK rental income so presumably does submit UK tax returns. Of course it is entirely possible that none of the above cross-checks ever happen anyway, but I do not know.

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364701

Postby Rob625 » December 10th, 2020, 10:32 am

The original poster (OP) is asking why many UK banks/brokerages are withdrawing from offering services to clients in EU countries, even to UK nationals.

No, I said that I understand why that is.

What I did say was:
I hope it may be of interest to others in a similar position, and I would be very interested in comments or helpful information if others have found solutions.


Helpful information would include a report of experience, good or bad, with specific banks and brokers.

Is there anyone who uses ii.co.uk from abroad and holds UK shares, cash in GBP and EUR? How is their service? What does it cost to convert GBP to EUR?

Is there anyone who runs a UK GBP current account without giving the bank a UK address? and knows the bank will continue after 1 Jan? Which bank, what are the charges, how is the service?

Thanks - Rob

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Re: UK banks and brokers after Brexit

#364714

Postby dspp » December 10th, 2020, 10:54 am

Rob625 wrote:
The original poster (OP) is asking why many UK banks/brokerages are withdrawing from offering services to clients in EU countries, even to UK nationals.

No, I said that I understand why that is.

What I did say was:
I hope it may be of interest to others in a similar position, and I would be very interested in comments or helpful information if others have found solutions.


Helpful information would include a report of experience, good or bad, with specific banks and brokers.

Is there anyone who uses ii.co.uk from abroad and holds UK shares, cash in GBP and EUR? How is their service? What does it cost to convert GBP to EUR?

Is there anyone who runs a UK GBP current account without giving the bank a UK address? and knows the bank will continue after 1 Jan? Which bank, what are the charges, how is the service?

Thanks - Rob


Rob,

Right now I personally am in the UK, and have no ex-UK bank accounts. I have had in the past as I have been an expat for many years, so I recognise the issues and how the rules are being tightened up.

Friends & colleagues who are UK national and currently resident in Greece have taken to using https://transferwise.com/ . I occassionally send them funds from my UK bank account (HSBC) and from my end it appears just like any IBAN, so is acting much like a bank account. You may find it worth exploring that further. One who operated this was originally a UK resident, another originally a Greek resident, and another was indeterminate and I suspect trying to exploit the grey zone, but is encountering a coming-to-earth experience like many others.

If you are able to operate an ii account (I do, but I am UK resident) then you will find that you can hold currency in multiple currencies within your trading account (and in your SIPP, and if you were once a UK resident you may have a stranded/frozen SIPP)(but only GBP in an ISA so any forex dividends get force-converted into GBP in an ISA), and transfer between these currencies at will and with tolerable charges. You can also designate which external bank account you are connected to. You are asked for full disclosure by ii (they are the source of the questions I stated earlier) and so it is up to you how you answer.

What I don't know is if you can link ii to transferwise.

I hope that helps a bit. If you are able to find a solution then please post it up here to assist others.

regards, dspp


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