Generali Vision Plan Savings Review

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Generali Vision Plan SavingsGenerali Vision Plan Savings Review :-
Generali Worldwide is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Generali Group. Founded on the strength of this international presence and wide-ranging expertise, Generali Worldwide specialises in offering life-insurance-based wealth management and employee benefit solutions to a global audience, including multi-national organisations, international expatriates and local resident populations in licensed territories. This review is focused on the Generali Vision Plan.
The company’s head office is based in Guernsey, a premier international financial centre, and is a Registered Insurer under the Insurance Business (Bailiwick of Guernsey) law, 2002 (as amended). It is also an authorised insurer in the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Hong Kong, Jersey and Singapore.

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Generali Vision Plan Summary

Generali Vision Plan Savings Review

The Generali Vision Savings Plan is good if you can guarantee that you will maintain your savings at the same level for the whole term that has been selected (maybe as long as 25 years). If you cannot guarantee this then early access will result in severe penalties.

When considering a General Vision Plan then ensure you fully understand the local taxation position and weigh any benefits against its lack of flexibility, access and charges which are often not explained. The General Vision Savings Plan is an expensive option compared with a pure platform custodian plan and supposed tax benefits are usually outweighed by charges and lost through penalties.

We think there are other better options.


For


  • Widely available and sold
  • Offers some tax protection in certain jurisdictions
  • It could be considered for a 5 years investment term where no withdrawals required
  • If kept running to original planned term then may promote savings concept

Against


  • No flexibility of full withdrawal or full access in the early years without penalty
  • Many countries do not recognise any tax concessions
  • Commission wipes out all initial investments made making this an extremely expensive option
  • Does not provide full access to lowest cost funds and passive trackers



Documents

Policy Currency: The Generali Vision Plan may be denominated in US dollar, GB pound, Hong Kong dollar, Japanese yen or Euro. Benefits will be paid in the plan currency.
Why choose the Generali Vision Plan: Leading Fund Houses offer a wide choice of investment funds. Investment choice through a selection of more than 200 top performing investment options, from leading fund houses, to match a wide variety of investment profiles. Over 750 funds, external funds can be selected for additional fees.

Expat Money Expert Verdict on Funds 

Generali Vision Plan promotion: What does Generali write about their own Generali Vision Plan? Whatever you plan for your future, you will need financial resources available at the right time to be able to achieve the things you want. Vision is a regular premium investment solution that is designed to meet your changing needs throughout your life.So, if you are interested in building a brighter future for you and your family, look no further than than the Generali Vision Plan.
Eligibility: Generali Vision Savings Plan is a regular premium, whole of life, life assurance contract issued by Generali International. It is available to most international investors outside of main regulated territories such as the UK, the U.S.A. and Australia. Generali also offer a range of individual unit-linked regular and single premium-based savings, retirement and investment plans and an open-architecture portfolio bond along with Group retirement and savings products, Group Life and Disability and Healthcare products.
Minimums: The minimum regular premiums for terms of more than 10 years are USD150 monthly, USD450 quarterly or USD1,800 annually. The minimum premiums of the Generali Vision Plan for terms of less than 10 years are three times these amounts.For Singapore residents the minimum premiums increase to USD417 monthly, USD1,250 quarterly, or USD5,000 annually. For a Generali Vision Plan with a premium payment term of less than 10 years the minimum annualised regular premium is USD50,000 divided by the premium payment term. The payment term is selected at outset for a minimum of five years although contributions may be continued after this time.
Charges: This will depend on the type of plan you take out from Generali as they offer different charging structures largely linked to the amount of commission or earnings being taken by the third party salesman or adviser.

Initial Period:-
The Initial Period is determined by the Premium Payment Term of your Plan. It is the period after Plan commencement during which Initial Units are allocated. The Initial Period (in years) is equal to the total administration fees due over the Premium Payment Term (see “Administration Fee” in section 10 “Fees and Charges” for further details) divided by the initial annualised Regular Premium. (If the premium payment frequency of your Plan is monthly, your annualised Regular Premium is the monthly premium multiplied by 12.)

In summary, Initial Units incur additional charges at commencement, and then throughout the term and may be worthless if you cancel the policy early.

Where a Premium Payment Term of five years or more is selected at Plan commencement
Payable up to year 5 2.75% per annum of total Regular Premiums due from Plan commencement to the relevant Plan Anniversary.
Payable after year 5 2% per annum of total Regular Premiums due from Plan commencement to the relevant Plan Anniversary
Where a Premium Payment Term of ten years or more is selected at Plan commencement
Payable up to year 10 2% per annum of total Regular Premiums due from Plan commencement to the relevant Plan Anniversary.
Payable after year 10 0.3% per annum of total Regular Premiums due from Plan commencement to the relevant Plan Anniversary.

Are charges explicit: Well, if you can understand all of the above, then yes! The issue is that a bit like a new mobile phone contract, there are so many options then it becomes information overload.

Documents

Generali Vision Plan Terms
Generali Vision Plan Brochure

Expat Money Expert Verdict on Charges 

Surrender of the Generali Vision Plan: A partial surrender on your Generali Vision Plan may be treated as a one-off withdrawal. Further details on how it is treated is available in the relevant brochure. A full encashment results in penalties being applied through surrender charges linked to the term of the policy. In essence, all your premiums are forfeited if surrendered during the initial period. For a 25 year plan, this period would be 23 months.

It is important to be aware that the Generali Vision Plan is a long term savings plan, if you decided to cancel the plan early you could lose a large proportion of the money you have saved, we have heard that as much as 50% of the value of the plan value can be lost by surrendering the Generali Vision Plan early.

Expat Money Expert Verdict on Accessibility 



Expat Money Expert Assessment of the Generali Vision Plan

A predominantly commission-based advisers product.

We think that this product is summarised by understanding that, in essence, all your premiums are forfeited if surrendered during the initial period. For a 25 year plan, this period would be 23 months. So if you are recommended to take out a 25 year policy, and then attempt to access your money after 2 years, you will receive back nothing.

As these types of plans go, the Generali Vision Plan is similar to many in the offshore market place. In the 1990s this may have been a top option but in 2016 it lacks the transparency of the latest plans available from territories such as the UK, the USA and parts of Europe; ultimately, the Generali Vision Plan is an expensive option when compared with a pure platform plan. The standard Generali Vision funds have high ongoing fees when directly compared to platform or direct offerings from fund houses via the UK or the USA.

There is no doubt that a Generali Vision Plan will do exactly what it says it will do if held to maturity, but any attempt to take proceeds early in the plans life, or make it paid up, will result in access penalties or higher charges on the remaining invested funds, or both.

However, some people require help when making disciplined decisions and will welcome the fact that a plan is written to a set target date and cannot be accessed; some people wish to deliberately lock-up their funds. Therefore, potential investors have to weigh up the benefits of locking up their investments and not having the flexibility to access their investment earlier without surrender charges applied.

NOTE: The Generali Vision Plan provides the option of lump sum commission to its distributors ( in the industry this is called indemnified or up-front commission) and it has a successful network of distributing agents throughout the world excluding the main regulated territories. Not all distributing agents have regulation or financial qualifications and may not be aware of the other saving plan options available.

WARNING: Costs and information is correct as of July 2016. Please refer to a brochure from the company for current up to date information and any changes on costs or information. You should not buy based purely on information contained within this article and EME do not accept liability for purchases. If you have any doubts then please speak with your financial adviser or a representative of the company for further advice.

If the provider improves or amends its terms then EME would like to hear from them to amend the review page accordingly, and providers are encouraged to comment on errors or omissions to ensure that readers have the latest and correct information.



Comments 17

  1. I signed the same Plan in 2010 in Shanghai, with no precise explanation on the obligation in premium payments and the risks involved. With no alerts from Generali and from financial advisors, I realised a month ago that Generali charged me 20% of investment with no explanation. After calling them I got informed that my plan will soon be at 0 unless I paid in once all the premium that I was supposed to pay, and Never alerted about. Obviously I don’t have the cash to pay in one go and all my premiums will be stolen soon. We must do something all together about this huge scam! It must stop and all financial advisor in Asia also

  2. I was scammed out of several thousands of euros by Devere & Partners, who sold me a so-called Generali Policy.

    This happened as far back as 2010.

    I know that there are literally thousands of people who have fallen prey to this scam. The problem is: a lot of people seem to want to TALK about it; but nobody is interested in actually doing anything about it.

    I went as far as hiring a lawyer, who was based in London (UK). Mainly because that’s where DeVere was when they stole my money! My lawyer understood my situation, but he advised me that to let it go, because: the legal fees alone would exceed the money which Generali had stolen from me.

    His advice: find as many people as you can, who were also scammed, and organize ourselves into a group. Then, launch a legal battle.

    I have been searching for anyone who is interested in taking this matter further. But, so far, have not found anyone with the balls to get up and fight these animals!

    As in: launching a legal attack on Generali and somehow getting back the money they stole from us. !!

    If anyone is serious about getting together to hire a lawyer, here’s my email:

    darwell.steve@yahoo.com

  3. I bought the plan in 2004 and paid HK$12,000 a month for 10 years. I just got the money back a few days ago and the amount I got was HK$1,433,751.312. I contributed total HK$1,440,000 and after 13 years, I couldn’t even break even. This is totally a scam!@!@!

  4. I strongly advise to stay away from this investment.

    I too was duped into signing a 20 year term through DeVere. I was informed after the initial period I could reduce the payments down to any amount per month (i.e $50), without being informed the charges would still be deducted based on the initial amount. I have invested 65,000 USD to date, and am now going to walk away from it. It is a hard lesson to learn that I have just lost all of my savings. My surrender value is $0 meaning I don’t get anything back.

    The reason I decided that I wanted to get out of this investment is a point no one has raised yet. I wondered how my investment was loosing value although over the period all invested areas had increased in value. Then I was informed that your investment doesn’t own the bonds, if the value goes up, you only get a small percentage of this. The investment group keeps the profits from a difference in the share/bond value.

    This fund has now been banned in some countries. Unfortunately IFA’s often work in unregulated regions, i.e. Viet Nam and Dubai.

    Steer clear of Generali and DeVere

  5. I have been investing in the Generali Vision plan for 4 years. 21 years left of a 25 year plan. So far the results are good but as it is so long term I don’t care too much about the value at the moment. My advisor made it very clear to me when signing up that if I would withdraw money from my savings the first years, this would do me no good. I was also given the advice of switching funds to a minimum. As I am saving for my pension, I have no intention of accessing the funds until then. I understand that it is frustrating to loose a lot of money through the surrender values. However this should come as no surprise. I believe Generali offers the option of putting payments on holiday for up to 3 months. This could be a first option for those who are facing difficulties. There may be other options out there that are more transparent or have less costs… I don’t know. However if you are committed to not interfering with your 10, 15, 20 or 25 year plan I think Generali is an OK choice. Editor:Unfortunately, not everyone is able to predict their ability to pay the premiums for the next few years, and certainly not 25 years. There are other lower cost and more flexible options that allow penalty free access and the ability to stop and start and reduce premiums without costs. Thank you for your contribution”

  6. DO NOT EVER USE THEM!!
    By far the worst wealth-management organisation I have ever dealt with!

    So I signed up for my policy 10 years ago from the middle east. The plan came with investment adviser sending an update every 6 months or year with advice on investment changes to make and to set up a meeting to review the portfolio. Shortly after the first 2 years, I had issues with log in procedures and couldn’t access my acount, it took about 12 months to resolve.

    Once that was done, the adviser didn’t return any calls and apparently left Generali. That took me a few years to find out. Accordingly, I have asked them to provide another adviser and they refused to comment. Finally, they admitted that they didn’t have any advisers in the middle east and I should go and seek one out myself.

    I stopped the premium payments at that point and wanted to exit the portfolio, but obviously that was not an option since exit fees are too high. So I continued with the them and watched my investments decline over the years. My premium was over $12,000, my portfolio value is now $2,600, and Generali fees are $2,100 (not sure what that’s for since they have not provided me with any advise or even any IT support when requested). I understand that the last few years were difficult with the economic downtourn but if there were doing their job and advising me, it wouldn’t have declined so far.

    So my encashment value is down to $500. So I actually lost $11,500, definitely not worth the long distance phone calls and time spent on emails with the most incompetent customer service team on earth

  7. After 5 years of contributing to this Vision Plan, I have been trying to undertake a partial withdrawal for the last 8 months with so much hassles. as an earlier poster said, deadlines are not respected, you have to push them to get any feedback, and there are requests for proof of address documents that are absurd. For Proof of Address they request such a huge and complicated document list about confirmation of residence and the need to go through your blood sucking agent is just painful

  8. Unfortunately, this is true with nearly all offshore savings plan. The solution? Use a company that has access to UK regulated platforms which do not have Initial periods, exit penalties or (and the main point), DO NOT PAY COMMISSIONS TO ADVISERS.

    The industry offshore is slowly changing and eventually these products will not be available offshore. They would not be legal in the UK. There are a handfull of companies that are operating to UK standards and UK platforms which have better protection, governance and transparency but importantly, your tax status as an expat will not be altered.

  9. Agree with all the very negative comments about this product. Whilst in the UAE I was convinced by the IFA that this was a flexible product and I could reduce my savings contributions at any time. After being made redundant I want to stop payments but keep the planing running to expiry. Unfortunately, this plan would mean that most of the initial contributions (USD 140k) would be used to pay for fees making the plan almost worthless. The only people making money out of this product are IFAs (who get a very large upfront commission) and Generali. Unless you are very sure you can guarantee your contributions for the full term, you should avoid this product.

  10. My whole experience poor. Don’t believe anything the salesman tells you. Disgusted that people can lose thousands of dollars in a so called savings plan that in reality is just making money for a salesman and their company through hidden commissions.

    The salesman now gone, along with most of my money. Generali not interested

  11. Nice read, I just passed this onto a friend who was doing some research on Generali. And he actually bought me lunch as I found it for him. So thanks for lunch!

  12. Concur on the first review. After 2 years my work circumstances changed and asked for a partial surrender. Even though we were happy with the surrender amount the process was more painful than pulling teeth. Identity confirmations, signed statements, document copies etc. Even then took thier sweet time to transfer. From the point of getting the surrender estimates to getting your money took over 4 months, 3 DHL document shipments, uncountable emails and phone calls to the FA (generali will not answer directly to their clients). Even got the FA pissed off by the length of the process.

    Learnt my lesson. Do your own research before jumping in. Lots of other products out there that provide much better service that Generali.

  13. STAY AWAY FROM GENERALI IF YOU DONT WANT TO LOSE YOUR MONEY!

    Our investment horror story… We put in our hard-earned money up to a total of 110,000 USD. Because of their ‘expertise’ in fund management, the value sank to 103,000 USD. Now, because we have to pre terminate, that will pay us only USD 81,000.

    Put your money somewhere else.

  14. Very negative personal experience. I agree with those saying you have to think twice before starting with Generali Vision (Generali Policy). If something is going wrong with your earnings (unemployment, salary decrease, etc) and you need to ask for Partial or Total encashment – first, you will lose a lot (up to 50% of your paid amount). Secondly, they will do everything not to pay you YOUR money. The deadlines are not respected, you have to push them to get any feedback, they are always not satisfied with documents provided, nobody can confirm what is required, all requirements are different. For Proof of Address they request such a huge and complicated document list that you feel you deal with Secret Service not an investment company. If you are not 100% sure you will be absolutely stable for the next 15 years min – you better run from their advisors.

  15. I also have one of these plans (for 3 years now) and see it as a terrible mistake. Steer well clear.

  16. As an adviser who has recommended many of these plans over the years, I believe that this article does not highlight sufficiently the benefit of regular savings for clients. It is better to do something, rather than nothing, and end up with nothing! I like the support offered by Generali which I think is a good company.

  17. I had one of these plans, advised to be invested over 20 years, and then wanted the money back after 4 years. My statement said it was worth more than I had put in (just!) but what i was offered back was derisory. I lost a lot of money and I recommend people should think twice before they take out one of these plans.

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  • Charges criteria

    Charges are assessed inclusive of fund fees, capital units, bid/offer spread criteria and third party management fees which are often ignored but are, in effect, compulsory additional costs that essentially must be considered by clients.


    Star ratings

    The star ratings apply at inception of the products and in at least the first 2 -8 years. Some products reduce charges or become more accessible with time held, but the length varies for each product; from our reviews it is typically overall between 5-10 years.

    These ratings are awarded based on information obtained from the companies at a certain date. It is worth considering obtaining the latest updated information yourself before making a decision.


    Star ratings

    ChargesOverall charges greater than 8% per annum.
    FundsLimited selected range of collectives or mirror funds with upfront additional charges (Bid/Offer spread) or initial “capital” units.
    AccessibilitySevere access penalties, some accessibility after establishment period with total loss of fund or severe penalties in establishment period of 6-24 months or longer.
    Overall AssessmentA commission-based adviser’s product. Not recommended under any circumstances.

    ChargesOverall charges greater than 5% per annum.
    FundsIn-house range of collectives or mirror funds with upfront additional charges (Bid/Offer spread).
    AccessibilityPenalties resulting in loss of fund value may exist for 5 years – 8 years or longer, or total loss of fund or severe penalties in establishment period of 3-24 months.
    Overall AssessmentA predominantly commission-based adviser’s product with limited use or appeal.

    ChargesOverall charges between 2.5% and 5% per annum.
    FundsIn-house or limited range of collectives or mirror funds with no Bid/Offer spread.
    AccessibilityTo avoid access penalties, only typically accessible after establishment period of 3-24 months or longer, but with no penalties thereafter.
    Overall AssessmentFor those seeking lock-in target dates (perhaps with guarantees) over 5 years.

    ChargesOverall charges less than 2.5% per annum.
    FundsFull range of collectives with no Bid/Offer spread and rebates on charges reducing annual costs.
    AccessibilityImmediate within 60 days without any penalties on any item.
    Overall AssessmentRecommended for some situations and some people due to lower charges and flexibility.

    ChargesOverall charges less than 1.9% per annum.
    FundsIncludes ETPs (passive) and Individualised accessible collectives with no Bid/Offer spread and clean share classes for lowest annual costs.
    AccessibilityImmediate within 30 days without any penalties on any item.
    Overall AssessmentRecommended for most situations and most people, with full transparency and low charges.