Will resident ‘non-dom’ rule changes drive people away?

Will resident ‘non-dom’ rule changes drive people away?

At Hampden & Co, banking is our only business. We do not give wealth, planning or tax advice to our high-net-worth clients. This gives us the opportunity to work in partnership with a wide array of top law, accountancy, planning and investment management businesses. They are happy to introduce their clients to us as we are not in competition.

We regularly talk to these professional partners about the issues of the day. One of the hot topics is the uncertainty around the UK election and the potential treatment of wealthy UK-resident non-dom clients. Until the next budget at least, whichever political party is in power, that uncertainty will remain.

At a high level, we are hearing that many such clients are ‘planning to leave the UK’, with destinations such as Italy, Monaco, Switzerland, Spain and Dubai being talked about. That is a shame for UK PLC. But will they go?

The UK remains attractive, with safety and stability relative to many places in the world, world class education, culture, language, property, a temperate climate and financial sophistication. The conversations we are having extend beyond just the financial. While the income earner often says ‘we are off’, the wider family often says ‘no we are not’ for many of the reasons above.

It would be a real shame if the tax tail ends up wagging the dog. It will be in the Government’s hands, whichever persuasion it is, if the tax tail becomes the dog and the UK loses many of those who contribute a lot to the economy.

Mark Plummer is Head of Private Banking, London