Frequently Asked Questions
For answers to commonly asked questions please click on any of the sections below.
Got questions? We’ve got answers.
We get a lot of enquiries, many of which are the same 3 questions – what is financial emigration from South Africa, why do I need to do it, and how do I do it? Check out our FAQs for answers to all your questions.
Who is FinGlobal?
FinGlobal is South Africa’s #1 financial migration solution.
Why should I use FinGlobal?
- Authorised financial services provider. Regulated by the South African Financial Services Board. FSP # 42872.
- Approved South African Reserve Bank foreign exchange intermediary.
- South Africa’s Financial Centre Act (FICA) accountable institution
- Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act (FAIS) compliant.
- Internationally Accredited Professional Provident Society (PPS) Broker.
What does FinGlobal do?
We provide a fully-integrated financial migration solution to assist South Africans who need to transfer funds from and to South Africa. Our services comprise:
- early retirement annuity surrender
- unclaimed policy search
- foreign exchange transacting
- tax compliance, consulting and refunds
- inheritance transfers
- financial migration planning
- bank accounts
Where do I find FinGlobal?
Does FinGlobal sub-contract services to any of third party companies?
No we don’t. In order to ensure client confidentiality and effectively manage turn around times all services are rendered by our inhouse specialist team.
How secure is my personal information when entrusted to FinGlobal?
For your safety our website and online forms are GeoTrust® SSL Secured to guarantee personal and private information is protected. We comply with the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) and the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI).
When appointing FinGlobal to move my money - do you have access to the funds?
No we don’t. We act as your agent to facilitate the transfer process and never have access to or control over your money.
How do you charge for your services?
FinGlobal quote and charge fixed service and solution based fees.. To explain the solution and confirm professional fees we assess each client’s situation by way of personal consultation. Payment takes place once agreed upon successful service completion.
No deposits are required.
What is the difference between emigration and immigration?
Immigration (physical relocation) – to another country from South Africa. Emigration (financial emigration) – from an exchange control perspective, is the financial exit from South Africa .
On completion of this process your financial status in South Africa changes from resident to non-resident.
Does emigration affect my South African residency status?
Emigration (also referred to as formal or financial emigration) does not affect your birthright, citizenship or the right to retain your South African passport.
Can I come back to South Africa after I’ve emigrated?
As a global citizen of the world you are free to return as and when you please.
Once a South African always a South African.
FAQ’s for clients who are in South Africa
How much money may I transfer abroad every year?
Every resident above the age of 18 has two allowances that they can use to transfer funds from SA:
- Single Discretionary Allowance
As a resident, you may transfer a total of R1 000 000 from SA every calendar year. Please note that all card transactions while you are abroad are included under this allowance.
- Foreign Investment Allowance
As a resident, you may also use this R10 000 000 allowance per calendar year. A tax clearance is required from SARS. This tax clearance is associated with the Foreign Investment Allowance and differs from a normal ‘good standing’ tax clearance.
You may also transfer funds abroad in excess of these allowances. Please contact us for more information.
The minimum requirement for transferring funds is that you must be in possession of a green bar-coded ID document or the latest ID card.
Must I pay tax on the money that I want to transfer abroad?
Foreign transfers do not attract any tax liabilities. Normal tax rules apply to the transaction. An example would be donations. Tax is incurred when funds are donated to a third party living abroad.
Can I open a foreign bank account online in order to transfer my money abroad?
Some countries allow you to open bank accounts online. Please visit the foreign bank’s website for more information.
How does FinGlobal transfer a client's funds abroad?
We are licensed to do foreign exchange transactions through our strategic partner, Bidvest Bank.
We open a bank account online for each client. This account is exclusively used to do foreign exchange transactions. The client funds his account and FinGlobal facilitates the foreign transfer through Bidvest Bank upon the client’s request.
Is it safe to do foreign transfers through FinGlobal?
FinGlobal adheres to all Regulatory requirements and is registered with the FSB. We facilitate foreign transfers but a client’s funds are held with Bidvest Bank in a bank account only accessible to the client.
What are the advantages of using FinGlobal?
- FinGlobal is a reputable company and meets all FSB requirements. This means you have full recourse to the Financial Ombud of South Africa.
- All documentation is completed electronically.
- You have direct access to our Forex desk. Exchange rate quotes are given upon request and rates fixed when you decide to transact.
- We offer preferential exchange rates.
What does it cost?
There is no commission payable on foreign exchange transactions.
Bidvest Bank charges a transaction fee that is confirmed with you prior to proceeding with the transfer. The exchange rate margin is determined by the amount you would like to transfer. Please make contact with us to obtain a quote.
FAQ’s Regarding Moving Abroad
I have money and assets in SA. Can FinGlobal provide me with a proposal to transfer the proceeds abroad as and when I liquidate them?
Yes, we provide you with a free financial report that details the actual surrender values of your policies along with an estimate of the tax payable upon surrender. We then evaluate each client’s unique cash flow requirements and their list of assets to provide them with a solution that will fit their needs.
We offer a full range of in-house services to:
- Surrender policies
- Complete all Tax services
- Complete Foreign exchange transactions
- Complete Financial Emigration Applications
How are fees calculated?
Fees are charged for every service required and are not commission based. For this reason we provide free consultations in order to understand every client’s needs prior to providing a comprehensive quote.
What if I leave before all my proceeds are ready to transfer?
FinGlobal provides financial services to clients living in South Africa and abroad. Where possible, all paperwork is completed and signed electronically. If original documents are required, we will arrange for our international couriers to collect documents at your home or office, anywhere in the world.
May I use my foreign address for FICA purposes?
Yes, there are specific guidelines set out with regard to this requirement. Please contact us to discuss your options.
Can I surrender all my policies before I move abroad?
When moving abroad you do have the opportunity to surrender RAs and other policies that otherwise could not be accessed in full. In most instances you are required to complete administrative processes that can take a long time to complete. This might seriously impact your projected cash flow when relocating. Please request a free financial report so we can advise you on your options.
What is Financial Emigration?
This is a formal application that is lodged with a local bank in order to place a resident’s emigration on record. A declaration of the resident’s local assets forms the basis of this application. It is important to note that there is no requirement to liquidate any local assets in order to complete this process.
What are some of the advantages of completing a Financial Emigration?
- You will be allowed to surrender your RAs in full.
- It will be easier to transfer the proceeds abroad from assets you decide to leave behind in SA in the interim.
- It will be easier to transfer any future inheritance from South Africa.
I heard that my assets and bank account will be "Frozen" if I complete a Financial Emigration. Is this true?
Not at all. Until recently the SARB used the terms “blocked” assets and “blocked rand account”. These terms are no longer used in the Financial Emigration process as it created the impression that assets would be blocked from leaving South Africa and that a bank account would be blocked or frozen. In this instance the word “blocked” is used in much the same way, as you would “block” a time in your calendar – it is set aside for a special purpose.
Will I lose my residency or citizenship if I complete a Financial Emigration?
No, this process constitutes a formal application to the SARB and does not influence your residency or citizenship at all.
If I complete a Financial Emigration, will I be allowed back into South Africa?
Yes, you may visit South Africa without restriction. You may also return to South Africa permanently but you may have to inform the SARB formally of your return. Please ask our consultants for more information.
I live abroad but still have business interests in South Africa. Can I complete a Financial Emigration?
Yes, it is possible to complete a Financial Emigration but it might not be desirable. Please speak to one of our consultants about your specific situation.
FAQ’s Regarding Living Abroad
I have an inheritance in South Africa. How do I transfer this abroad without visiting South Africa?
Please make contact with our financial consultants. We will evaluate your situation and provide you with the easiest solution to receive your inheritance abroad. We can also provide a quote upon request.
I never informed SARS that I left South Africa. How do I now transfer policy proceeds or cash from South Africa?
Most South Africans never inform SARS of their plans to remain abroad. Please make contact with our consultants to discuss your options in accessing and transferring your funds from South Africa.
I now live outside of South Africa and still have policies there. What are my options?
Please ask for a free financial report. Our consultants will contact your insurers to obtain the information required to provide you with accurate information regarding your options.
I have RAs in South Africa and was told that I could surrender them before I turn 55. Is this true?
Yes, please make contact with us to establish whether a Financial Emigration is required in order to surrender your RAs.
I currently receive a regular income stream from my policies or pension in South Africa. Can I transfer the capital abroad?
Unfortunately, the capital cannot be accessed or transferred abroad if:
- You are receiving an income from these policies or pensions.
- The cumulative value of these policies with a specific insurer is worth more than R50 000.
Can I transfer an RA or pension fund from South Africa to a pension fund in another country?
No, the RA or Pension Fund must be surrendered, tax paid and cash transferred abroad. Please ask for a free financial report so that the tax implications in South Africa can be confirmed.
Will I be taxed in South Africa and in my new country of residence if I transfer funds abroad?
There are tax agreements between South Africa and most other countries in the world. These agreements are complicated and consultation with Cross Border Tax specialists and Tax Consultants in your new country of residence is required. Please ask our consultants for guidance or make an appointment with our Cross Border Tax specialist.
What is a free financial report?
In order to provide you with accurate advice, our consultants need to obtain information from your insurers and SARS. This feedback is presented to you in a financial report and forms the basis of your financial consultations. This report details actual surrender values, general policy information as well as a basic tax calculation.
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