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Des Cooney


Des Cooney


Axis Strategy Consultants


Senior Consultant

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Des Cooney specializes in the provision of advice on pensions and retirement planning to expatriates. He is a Director of Axis Strategy Consultants, a French regulated Insurance broker. His particular area of expertise is on QROPS and the transfer of UK pensions overseas. Emphasis is put on the investment of clients' money in the ‘right funds at the right time’ in order to maximize gains. Attention is also given to tax planning issues when deciding which products to recommend.


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Latest questions answered by: Des Cooney


Hello Des,

Are there any government provisions like Provident Fund or Pension fund which is mandatory according to government laws in Paris?


by Pratibha on 16 May 2018 Read Answer
Morag Paterson

Hello .... just to be SURE I read Expatica's great information re French pensions correctly.... if I (as a British citizen) worked for LESS than a total of 10 years in France (in 1970s and 1980s), then there is NO French pension possible?

Thanks in advance for clarifying (while I add up the years to double check ...)


by Morag Paterson on 23 Apr 2018 Read Answer
Cecilia Cunningham, LCSW

Hello, I am a social worker in the United States and am working with a woman who collects a small pension from France. She said that it is the French equivalent to our Social Security Program. I am trying to help her apply for assistance with her electric bill and need to document her income. The money is direct deposited into her checking account. She has not received any statements or letters about this income in a long time. The deposit in her account is from "Carsat Centre Ipstoach" with a series of numbers after it. How can we get a statement of her benefits? This is a pressing issue because she is behind on her bill and has a shut off notice. Thank you very much. C.Cunningham

by Cecilia Cunningham, LCSW on 21 Mar 2018 Read Answer
Meg Baglioni

I am an Italian doctor working in a public hospital in France, after 13 years in the NHS in Wales and 22 years in Italy. I am considering remaining in France and working for the next 7 years, bringing me to retirement age (65). However, I have heard that if I do not work in France for 10 years, I will have no right to a pension. Is this true? Is there not a way to combine my time in the EU, both or either Italy or UK? I am having trouble finding this information, and I must decide soon whether to return to the UK and save my pension or remain here but secure that I will have a right to a pension for my years of service. HELP! Please

by Meg Baglioni on 20 Nov 2017 Read Answer
raymond doctor

I am not a French National. I worked in France as a Directeur d'Etudes at the Ecole des hautes Etudes for 4 months for a period of 3 years: A total of one year. Subsequently, I was appointed Charge de recherches at the College de France for a full year.
In both these cases, my fiche de paie shows a cotisation to the Securite Sociale as per rules.
An Indian citizen I am now 67 and am retired. I have been informed by some of my French friends that I am eligible for a pension from the French Government. They say that even work for a trimester makes you eligible. I would like to know if this is true. And if so who do I contact by email.
Many thanks for taking the trouble of replying.

by raymond doctor on 17 Nov 2017 Read Answer
Pauline Harrowell

Hi Des. I live in the UK and am applying for my French retirement pension. I think I've got all the necessary docs. However I am unable to get the form giving my UK bank details signed and stamped ("cachet et visa") as my bank account is an online/phone account only, there is no-one with a rubber stamp. Has anyone else had this problem?

by Pauline Harrowell on 07 Nov 2017 Read Answer
Helen Furby

Dear Des,
My father died last April. He was receiving a French pension and supplementary amounts from AGRIC Reunica and ARRCO Humanis. I have finally managed to sort and claim a widows pension for my Mum from AGRIC and ARRCO but am still battling with incomprehensible forms from L'Assurance Retraite. Our solicitors cannot translate, so I am doing this for them with limited French and increasing confusion.I would really appreciate advise on where I can get help.We live in Devon,however this may not be relevant.Any help would be greatly appreciated!

by Helen Furby on 08 Jun 2017 Read Answer
David Sherlock

We are a retired couple living in France and receiving UK pensions. These are our only sources of income, and have a small amount of savings. What is our liability for income tax to the French government, if any?

by David Sherlock on 20 May 2017 Read Answer
Jane Smith

Hi Des,

I am a UK citizen, married to a Belgian living in France.

We came to France when he a European Mobility Fellowship. I am not working we have a child of 6. He has his pension accumulation through the University, but we cannot find anybody who can tell me if I am accumulating pension contributions during the 3 years we have been here in my own right as wife.

If not I should pay voluntary contributions to the UK for the last 3 years.

by Jane Smith on 13 Apr 2017 Read Answer
Anthony Coombs

Hi Des,

I'm a UK citizen who has lived in France for 20 years in full employment with a French contract. Previously, I worked in the UK. Recently, I received a statements from AGRIC on my estimate pension for my retirement age starting at age 62 onward. I'm seriously thinking of taking early retirement at the age of 62 due to a long career starting at the age of 16. This would be in 4 years' time when I'm 62 - giving 24 years of contributions to the French system. My question is whether AGRIC and the state pensions would be granted to me at 62? Can you see any reasons why this would not be granted? I'm also concerned about BREXIT and whether this would affect anything??

Many Thanks


by Anthony Coombs on 06 Apr 2017 Read Answer

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