Any experience of using Financial/Tax consultants for French regulations?

I’m moving to become a resident in December to meet the 31-Dec date. In preparation we have commissioned a report about our finances and optimising these with regards to tax and various mechanisms that are available such as “Assurance vie”. The report is very comprehensive and obviously this firm is trying to sell on their management services - but their charges seem quite high.
In the UK we have never used any managed services - we are both quite savvy financially and have managed our own ISAs, pensions, etc., however, in the UK we know and understand the regulations and the financial markets.
I’m interested any experience that you may have had in utilising these sort of services in France - some questions in my mind:

  1. Did using consultants for managing your investments provide value?
  2. How tightly are financial/tax consultants regulated in France?
  3. Do most people manage their own investments and tax affairs?
  4. Do the majority of people retain their pensions/investments in the UK and transfer income over to France?
  5. Are some of these consultants “targeting” UK expats due to the “fear” factor and the time pressure of the Brexit deadline?

Any thoughts and experiences shared will be welcome.


I would recommend taking advice. The situation in France is complex (and in French) and mistakes can be expensive.

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We have used financial advisers and accountants, but for convenience as this subjects bores us rigid. I don’t feel that they have any significant financial effects positive or negative. But then our risk profile is moderate so little opportunity for major gains.

With the exchange rate being what it is we haven’t moved everything over here. But things that were no longer sensible in UK such as ziSA we did move to Assurance Vie.

There doesn’t appear to be an equivalent in france of self managed portfolios. Only hugely expensive managers.

We took advice, from Blevins Franks.

We have moved our investments into Assurance Vie (as per Jane has above). My pensions have mostly been transferred into a QROP

Of course, Blevins Franks have done very nicely from these activities with a chunky fee structure and ongoing charges.
They are higher than the UK, a friend who used to manage the HSBC wealth team in the UK and now works for St James Place did take a look for me and her comments were that whilst the charges were higher than the UK they were not excessive and that you do get what you pay for in terms of performance and return in relation to passive investment and smaller investment organisations usually

I had the dreaded phone call on Friday from my well trusted uk pension adviser of 7 years to say the due to “passporting” he could no longer support me on my personal pension which is our main income source. Since then I’ve contacted four advertising in Connexion…one read the mail but no response (Blevins F), one would only talk to me if I completed a four page “fact find” and accepted their T&Cs, one called saying they only dealt with french nationals, one sent me two mails for "tele conferences!"and never called and the last was a dud phone number and bounced email.
I’m worried and dispirited…any suggestions from anybody?

There are some financial pension advisors in the UK who have passporting rights. Not a lot of choice as only a few of them, but we used one to set up an annuity,

Maybe start with the Pension Wise website and dig from there

@Brian_Furzer Are you able to help ??

Hello Stella,
Which enquiry needs help? I can assist with all of those with cogent input and advice.
Thank you and best regards,

Hello John,
I can help if you are still in need. I am happy to call you or you can email me at
Kind regards,

Just thought I’d throw your name into the ring…

I think there was talk of Pensions… somewhere in the opening post on this
thread, but it’s been a long day, already… and I may have got the wrong end of the stick…

cheers anyway

Hello Yogesh,
You have some interwting points there. I can contribute to each one if you wish. If so please email me ylur contact details on
Kind regards,


@Brian_Furzer the OP with the enquiry is @ykm71 post #1

We approached a well-known international finance advice company regarding transfer to a QROPS and also setting up an assurance-vie and the net result was that our assets were not enough to make it worth doing anything. I found that more than somewhat depressing, so if @Brian_Furzer doesn’t mind, I might email him as well? I really don’t want to waste anyone’s time if we are not worthwhile :smiley:

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:slightly_smiling_face: Yes -hence the commissioned report.

Hi Jane,
Yes that’s exactly what I have found to date - the lack of self-managed portfolios and as you say, the management charges are pretty expensive.

Thanks Peter, interesting to hear - I feared that the charges were going to be higher in France.

Hi Brian,
I’ll email you my contact details - it would be interesting to get your views.

Hello Angela,

I will be happy to discuss with you. Please let me know how to contact you.

Best Regards,


At first look Harrison Brooks seem to be worth investigating. Their charges aren’t totally eye-watering and they’re well-rated. Other than consult an accountant I have no personal experience to offer.

we were scammed on pensions even though we felt we were savvy, now with others in a big court case, lost 75%.
We have an Assurance Vie but to be honest feel we are better with UK property giving us 10% return and paying the tax. AV has become smaller in 5 years, worse than having your money in a bank.

Take control would be my advice

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