PERSONAL INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT SERVICE
RL360 are based in the Isle of Man, conducting business in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and the UK. They provide offshore savings, protection and investment products to international professionals and local nationals.
RL360 is part of International Financial Group Limited (IFGL). IFGL provides investment, savings and protection solutions to international investors around the world and the group comprises RL360, RL360° Services, Ardan International and now also Friends Provident International.
> Tax protection to a certain extent for certain individuals.
> Can be a very expensive option since many advisers choose it for maximum commission.
> Risk of hidden commission.
> Many countries do not recognise any tax concessions.
The plan can be set up in 1 of 7 currencies including Pound sterling (GBP), Euro (EUR), United States dollar (USD) Swiss franc (CHF), Australian dollar (AUD), Hong Kong dollar (HKD) and Japanese yen (JPY).
It has a capital redemption and life assurance variation.
You can invest from GBP 50,000 (and the currency equivalent) with the option to increase later.
PIMS has no fixed fund range and RL360 say that they are always open to new investment opportunities as they arise.
It offers 10 free dealing transactions.
1. Servicing charge:
This charge is deducted every quarter and increases each year in line with Isle of Man Retail Price Index. The charge is deducted until your plan ends.
2. Dealing charge:
This charge is deducted every time you instruct us to buy or sell an asset for your plan. The first 10 buys or sells are free.
3. Custody charge:
This charge is deducted every time you instruct us to buy or sell an asset for your plan.
4. Upfront charge:
The upfront charge option allows you to pay the full establishment charge at the start of your plan. If you select this option, RL360 will deduct the total establishment charge from your initial lump sum payment, which will mean that the amount available to you to invest will be less than the amount you have paid.
5. Establishment charge:
You can choose to pay the establishment charge over 5, 8 or 10 years. If you cancel your plan before the establishment charge period you have chosen has expired, they will take the outstanding establishment charge as an early exit charge before paying the remaining plan value to you. The establishment charge exists in order to cover the set-up costs of your plan, including the payment of any commission to your financial adviser (risk of hidden costs).
6. Other Charges:
There are also fund management charges, usually 1% to 2.5% pa each year- depending on the funds chosen.
Additionally there may be an adviser charge to manage the portfolio (often poorly), this typically can be between 1 to 1.5% per annum depending on the chosen advisers charging structure and service provided.
Pensions (QROPS and SIPP) – If the PIMS Bond is used within a QROPS or SIPP then there will be additional set up and ongoing fees for the life of the policy if it uses the option of administration charges. This should not be recommended. The option of Establishment charges lock the individual in for a set period and the initial years become extremely expensive compared to other options. This product should not be recommended for QROPS or SIPP investing.
Cancelling Your PIMS Plan
During the cooling off period:
After your plan has started and you have received your plan schedule, you will also receive a notice telling you about your right to change your mind and how to cancel.
You will have a 30 day cooling off period from the date you receive your plan schedule. If you do decide to cancel your plan during this period, they will return your initial payment unless the assets you invest in have fallen in value.
If this happens, you will receive back less than you paid in.
After the cooling off period:
RL360 will always assume that you intend to hold your plan for your intended investment term.
However, if you decide to cancel after the cooling off period and before any establishment charge has been paid in full, an early exit charge will apply which means you could get back less than you paid in.
This is an inflexible. expensive and outdated product.
It is a popular option with many financial advisers around the world. If used within a pension (QROPS or SIPP), charges become extortionate compared with pure investment platforms. Unfortunately, many expats are sold this product by unscrupulous financial advisers, either as a stand alone investment lump sum or within a UK pension structure (QROPS or SIPP).
If the charging structure is based on the maximum commission earnings for your adviser, high penalties to withdraw early will result. The commission taken will also have a negative impact for years as the charges are applied annually in arrears thus leading to reduced fund performance. As we always say, cost is often the biggest drag on investment performance.
If you are considering a RL360 PIMS Plan then ensure you fully understand the local taxation position and weigh any benefits against its lack of flexibility, access and charges which are often not explained by many salespeople. With regards to taxation, be aware that the tax benefits of portfolio bonds such as these are not always relevant depending on your nationality and where you live. Sometimes, there may be detrimental tax effects of such products. Many advisers will sell the product with no consideration for the clients' specific position. The RL360 PIMS offers a range of charging structures and it is vital to understand this as one adviser may charge less than another adviser for what appears to be an identical product.
The RL360 PIMS can be an expensive option compared with a investment platform depending on the adviser you use and supposed tax benefits can be outweighed by charges. It does not offer a full range of discounted funds, direct equities or trackers to invest in. We do not recommend it within any form of pension planning and not in the USA.
Get in touch
Whether you need a second opinion, want to find a qualified adviser, or just have some questions, Expat Money is here to help.
We'll call or email, learn about you and take you through your options.