New research reveals 11 million Brits are thinking of leaving the UK within the next two years to live abroad. If you're one of them (or you're already an expat), there are three essential things you need to think about:
1. UK Taxation
Depending on your circumstances, you may have to pay UK income tax, council tax, capital gains tax, and/or inheritance tax even if you qualify as a non-resident. The rules are very complicated, so seek advice from a solicitor who specialises in emigration and tax law.
2. Taxation Abroad
You may escape the clutches of the UK tax authorities, but you still have to pay taxes abroad (unless you move to a tax haven). And, as noted in The Observer recently, do not expect a foreign tax system to work exactly like the one in the UK. France has a "wealth tax;" Australia has a "foreign investment fund tax;" and neither France or Hong Kong has an equivalent to PAYE, so you have to put money aside to pay tax if you live there.
3. National Insurance, Pensions, & Benefits
Obtain a State Pension Forecast by filing an Application for a State Pension Forecast with HM Revenue & Customs, and read Form NI 38, which provides vital information regarding social security benefits abroad, e.g., how to remain eligible for a full UK state pension, make National Insurance contributions, and access free or reduced healthcare (in certain countries).
Additional Information & Advice
You can obtain further information about emigration on FindLaw. Alternatively, you may wish to speak with a solicitor who specialises in emigration law. You can be matched with a solicitor in your area for free via solicitor matching services, which can also help you to understand the best course of action for your situation and whether you are ready to hire a solicitor.