Getting Started

Why are Self-Directed IRA's so popular?

First of all it is up to you and you alone how the funds are invested, (keeping within the rules governing prohibited transactions of course). This becomes important when the participants, like yourselves, want to decide how their money should be invested. Maybe he or she wants a self-directed brokerage account because they trade their own investments and do a much better job than Wall Street. They may want to own real estate, precious metals, tax-lien certificates or any of the other so called non-traditional assets.

What makes our company unique?

What makes our business unique is we are one of the very few companies left that will allow clients to have their IRA or retirement plans held offshore. Our clients want to do things like have their IRA held at a foreign bank, establish an online offshore trading platform, hold precious metals in a vault in Switzerland or buy foreign real estate in addition to much much more.

Why do you need an IRA administrator?

It takes experience to know how to set up an offshore trading account, purchase foreign real estate, or make most offshore investments in a retirement plan while complying with the IRC or ERISA rules. We act as your IRA Administrator and consultant, helping you achieve your goals in a compliant manner. We've assisted clients in making hundreds of transactions overseas in an exciting variety of investments ranging from farms, reforestation projects, foreign real estate in exotic beachfront locations, precious metals, and foreign banking and trading platforms. 

To read more, click here

How can I protect my IRA?

  • Option#1: Move your funds to a Non-U.S. Bank
  • Option#2: Purchase a Non-U.S. Annuity
  • Option#3: Form an International Business Company or Foreign Corporation
  • Option#4: Direct Foreign Investments


How do I buy Real Estate through my IRA?

  • Open an account with Sovereign International Pension Services
  • Arrange for transfer of funds
  • Fill out a direction of investment
  • Execute sales contract with help of administrator
  • Apply for loan in the name of the IRA 
  • Close on transaction and reap tax-sheltered benefits
  • Option to pay yourself an asset management fee (not a direct property management fee) 

        Another alternative:

  • Purchase Real Estate through a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC).  What is an LLC?  A limited liability company (LLC) is a corporate structure whereby the members of the company cannot be held personally liable for the company's debts or liabilities. Limited liability companies are essentially hybrid entities that combine the characteristics of a corporation and a partnership or sole proprietorship.

Can I use my IRA to purchase property I already own?

No. This is considered a prohibited transaction

What is a prohibited transaction?

A prohibited transaction is a transaction between a plan and a disqualified person that is prohibited by law. Prohibited transactions generally include the following transactions:

  • a transfer of plan income or assets to, or use of them by or for the benefit of, a disqualified person;
  • any act of a fiduciary by which plan income or assets are used for his or her own interest;
  • the receipt of consideration by a fiduciary for his or her own account from any party dealing with the plan in a transaction that involves plan income or assets;
  • the sale, exchange, or lease of property between a plan and a disqualified person;
  • lending money or extending credit between a plan and a disqualified person; and
  • furnishing goods, services, or facilities between a plan and a disqualified person.

 To read more, click here

What types of investments have your clients made?

Here are some of the types of investments I've seen clients make offshore. This list is by no means all inclusive.

  • Foreign Bank Accounts. (According to the FBAR form, IRA's/Retirement plans are exempt from reporting a foreign bank account.)
  • Non-US trading platforms for the do it yourself stock trader.
  • Managed accounts in Switzerland, Denmark, Ireland, the Isle of Man, Britain and Canada.
  • Foreign real estate including raw land, rental property, and commercial property in Mexico, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Belize, Ecuador, Roatan Honduras, and most of South America.
  • Precious metals held in Singapore, Hong Kong, London, Switzerland, and Panama. (You can take your existing precious metals and have them physically shipped to an offshore depository)
  • Alternative Investments like Reforestation Projects, Coffee plantations, Coconut plantations, Mango farms and Teak.

What is the difference between a domestic (U.S.) LLC and a foreign LLC?

Simple. A foreign LLC is governed and protected by the laws of a foreign jurisdiction. This means that it may be possible to move any litigation surrounding a foreign LLC to a foreign country. This makes it very expensive for the plaintiff to pursue a foreign LLC. Not impossible, but expensive.

To read more, click here.

What is a Check-Book IRA?

There is NO such thing as a “check-book IRA”. That's right it DOESN'T exist. On the other hand someone deserves kudos for coining that term because it is a brilliant marketing tool.

Let me explain. An IRA is an IRA is an IRA. A bank account with a checking account is just another of the many alternative investment options available to an IRA holder. Of course you'll never be able to open an account like this unless you are working with an IRA Administrator like SIPS. We've helped our clients open bank accounts for their IRA's in many different countries

To read more, click here.  

Can I buy gold in my IRA?

SIPS clients can self-direct their accounts into a wide variety of bullion products, including allocated lots of gold, silver, platinum, or palladium - single coins to multi-ounce bars - with worldwide storage options, low prices, complete liquidity, total security, limited reporting requirements, and access to a 24-hour buying and selling platform online.

To read more, click here


What is the most cost effective way to add physical gold to my IRA

Adding precious metals to your IRA is easy:

  • #1- Open an account with Sovereign International Pension Services
  • #2- If you have an existing IRA, transfer money to fund your gold account
  • #3- Decide whether to buy coins, bullion or paper gold and instruct your IRA representative to make the purchase for you

To read more, click here

If my IRA invests in gold or other bullion, can I store the bullion in my home?

Gold and other bullion are “collectibles” under the IRA statutes, and the law discourages the holding of collectibles in IRAs. There is an exception for certain highly refined bullion provided it is in the physical possession of a bank or an IRS-approved nonbank trustee. This rule also applies to an indirect acquisition, such as having an IRA-owned Limited Liability Company (LLC) buy the bullion. IRA investments in other unconventional assets, such as closely held companies and real estate, run the risk of disqualifying the IRA because of the prohibited transaction rules against self-dealing.



Contact Sovereign

7143 State Rd 54, #147,
New Port Richey, FL 34653

Phone: 727-286-6237
Toll Free: 877-733-6815
Fax: 727-286-6239
Monday-Thursday 8:00am-4:30pm
Friday 8:00am-4:00pm

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