My wife and I live in UK. My In-Laws are UK expats currently living in Switzerland.
They are investing some of their savings into Gold Bullion. (not interested in any assessment of that decision in & of itself)
Their preferred Bullion-selling-website only operates in the UK, and will only accept orders delivered to, and paid for from, UK addresses.
They're drip investing into the gold, buying a few thousand-£s-worth at a time.
So each time they want to invest, they do so through me. The process is:
- They email me to check I'm happy to do another bullion purchase.
- Transfer expected funds to me.
- Next day, email me specific bullion purchases.
- I place the order (i.e. after the funds have arrived with me)
- They send over any excess from price shifts between the 2 days.
- I receive the bullion.
- I give them the bullion next time they come over the UK for any reason. (Family, work, etc. etc.) (Normally, 'a few months later')
Question: What risks or problems should I keep in mind?
I'm not worried about the initial payment bouncing/getting reversed. A) I'm sufficiently confident in the family relationship to be confident that won't happen. and B) Even in the worst case scenario, I would expect that to happen well before the bullion is handed back, so I'll still have the gold bullion, and can just hold and sell that.
The 2 other possible risks that I have in mind are:
- This is actually quietly laundering money, in some not-that-exciting-but-definitely-illegal white-collar way.
- This whole process should actually be incurring a bunch of tax, which I'm illegally failing to declare & pay.
- This whole process should actually be incurring a bunch of import/export duty, which someone is illegally failing to declare & pay, and I might get burned from that.
- Do either of those things seem particularly likely/possible?
- Is there anything else that I haven't considered?