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Utmost International Executive Investment Bond Review

This review is about Utmost International Executive Investment Bond (EIB) from Utmost International (former Quilter International).

We’ll first get to know Utmost International a bit for those who are unfamiliar with it. You can skip the introductions if you already know who the company is.

in this review, you will also learn how Utmost International Executive Investment Bond can enhance your offshore investment bonds strategy.

If you want to invest as an expat or high-net-worth individual, which is what I specialize in, you can email me (advice@adamfayed.com) or use WhatsApp (+44-7393-450-837).

This includes if you have a policy and aren’t happy.

Utmost International Background

Utmost International is a global provider of insurance and investments to individuals and businesses in need of sound financial planning. Unit-linked policies, investment bonds, and savings plans are some of the insurance and investment vehicles available.

Prior to its acquisition by Utmost Group in 2021, Utmost International was known as Quilter International. The terms of the agreement called for Quilter International to hand over to Utmost International its activities in the Isle of Man, Ireland, and Hong Kong. Utmost Group made the purchase to strengthen its position in the worldwide life insurance and investment industries and increase its overall global reach.

All references to Quilter International throughout this article should be read as references to Utmost International, and vice versa.

What is the Executive Investment Bond (EIB)?

The Utmost International Executive Investment Bond is an insurance policy that you pay for all at once and it lasts for your whole life. Your beneficiaries will get a payout if the plan is still in effect at the time of your passing. The policy can be issued as a single policy or multiple policies, which can help with tax planning.

When you activate the policy, there is a fixed charge that is agreed upon based on the commission and charging structure. There is a fixed amount that may be assessed for early withdrawal from a policy, known as a “surrender charge” or “early withdrawal charge.” However, this cost might be avoided if you have a commission-free policy.

Utmost International offers a broad variety of investment funds, both internally and externally managed. However, Quilter International must approve all funds to guarantee quality and safeguard investors.

Some investment vehicles are so-called mirror funds that seek to replicate the performance of another existing fund. This type of investment may cause price differences and underperformance in the long run, so you should be aware of the risks you’re taking on. Besides, the platform hosts some funds that are not subject to any oversight and thus carry an exceptionally high level of uncertainty.

You can have an Executive Investment Bond policy in United States dollar (USD), pound sterling (GBP), euro (EUR), Swiss franc (CHF), Australian dollar (AUD), Hong Kong dollar (HKD), or Japanese yen (JPY). It is available to majority of international investors.

There is no set term for the Utmost International Executive Investment Bond; however, it is best for those who can commit for at least 5-10 years. The bond is best suited for long-term investing because of the penalties that would be incurred if the money were to be withdrawn early.

Utmost International Executive Investment Bond insurance and investments

How much is the minimum payment?

To start a policy with this investment platform, you need to invest a lump sum worth at least 50,000 pounds or 75,000 USD/euros. You may make extra lump sum payments at any time after setting up your insurance. The minimum amount for these top-ups is 2,500 in pounds or 3,750 in USD or euros.

It’s important to note that any initial fund charges will apply to all contributions, whether they are your initial lump sum or subsequent additional payments.

You will be able to choose from 13 currencies when you pay into the plan.

What are the charges?

The charges associated with an Utmost International Executive Investment Bond will vary depending on the type of policy selected. The firm provides several pricing models depending on how much of a commission or profits share the third-party salesperson or consultant makes on the sale of the investment.

The Bond allows for flexible access to your capital, with a minimum withdrawal amount of 500 pounds or currency equivalent. As long as you maintain a surrender value of 10,000 pounds minimum (or currency equivalent), Utmost states that withdrawals are free of charge. Nevertheless, be aware that charges may apply for withdrawing from certain assets, such as fixed-term deposits.

The Bond has a policy charge per year, which is a set amount that may go up at any moment. Additionally, a percentage charge on the value of the fund may be imposed in the first few years to cover management costs; this charge may persist for as long as seven years or even the life of the policy.

Also take note of fund management fees that could be assessed at roughly between 1% to 2.5% per annum based on the funds you picked. Brokerage costs for acquiring and offloading stocks and other assets could go as high as 2% if the open architecture option is selected.

On top of those charges, there could be an adviser fee of 0.5% to 1.5% of the portfolio value that you’d need to pay per year.

If you choose to make a full encashment of your Bond in the early years of the policy, surrender charges will be applied. These charges are linked to the term of the policy, and typically, higher charges are imposed during the first 5 to 10 years.

Surrender charges are designed to deter investors from withdrawing their funds too soon, as doing so may affect the investment’s ability to perform over time.

What investment options are available?

Through the policy, you have access to offshore or mutual funds, stocks, fixed-income securities, multicurrency deposits, hedge funds, structured notes, ETFs, and other alternative investments, among other things. You can choose to transfer and combine investments that you already hold and are free to acquire or sell assets or money as you see appropriate, since this flexibility is at your disposal.

Can you invest in the Executive Investment Bond through a QROPS or SIPP?

Yes, you can use it within a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) or a Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP). Be prepared, however, for extra payments to be incurred both at the policy’s initial setup and on a continuing basis.

Is it possible to set up a trust using an Executive Investment Bond?

Establishing a trust for your Executive Bond may provide several benefits, both during your lifetime and after your death. Additionally, placing your bond in trust may expedite the transfer of your assets to your beneficiaries by bypassing probate requirements.

What happens to the policy on your passing?

When you, what happens to your EIB depends on whether there are any other policyholders or people whose lives are covered by the insurance.

If there are still people alive who are covered by the insurance, the Bond will continue and ownership will be transferred to them or the trustees of any trust that’s in place. When there are no longer any policyholders, the bond matures and the proceeds are distributed to the deceased’s estate or designated beneficiaries. Payment will be made to the trust’s trustees or beneficiaries if the bond is held in trust.

What are the positives and negatives of the Utmost International Executive Investment Bond?

Utmost International Executive Investment Bond pros and cons

Positives

The Executive Investment Bond is a popular investment designed to be flexible and easy to manage. You can change investments or add new funds without any extra paperwork once the bond is set up. It can also make it easier for your heirs and beneficiaries to manage your estate if all your main investments are under a single bond.

The bond also includes life assurance, which provides protection for your investment. If the final life assured passes away, the death benefit is only 101% of the surrender value. However, the life assurance is added to bring the Executive Investment Bond and its underlying investments under the protection of the Isle of Man government. This can provide some tax advantages in certain jurisdictions.

It’s worth noting that bond holders in low- or no-tax nations may not get as many benefits from their investment.

Negatives

In order to maximize their revenues, financial salesmen for Utmost International are free to charge whatever commission they see fit for the Executive Investment Bond. However, the product’s high fees and obtuse pricing structure can make it difficult to afford. You may also owe taxes on the investment’s growth or withdrawal proceeds, depending on the regulations in your place of residence.

If you’re on the fence about purchasing a Bond, weigh the advantages against the hefty charges. You’ll find that their potential benefits are frequently lost due to the excessiveness or lack of clarity.

Utmost International Executive Investment Bond: The Bottom Line

The Executive Investment Bond offered by Utmost International has some potential advantages, such as reducing administrative burden and enabling sophisticated tax planning.

However, it also has high hidden charges and a high degree of risk, making the investments unsuitable for most people. Regulated distributors may also have different standards overseas, and many clients have received unsatisfactory outcomes from this product.

If you have transferred a pension into this product via a QROPS or SIPP transfer, it is important to fully understand and double check any tax benefits and charging structure before proceeding.

Pained by financial indecision? Want to invest with Adam?

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Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 760.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.

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