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Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Old Sep 17th 2017, 7:54 pm
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Default Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

My husband and I have been married for 14 years and living in the states for nearly all that time. He is from England and a greencard holder. I am American. We have 4 children together. We have tossed around the idea of moving back several times over the past decade and now, the time feels right to start the process. Our kids range in age from 1-10 and are homeschooled, so no real heartbreak when we leave besides seeing my parents less and leaving my 10 year old's dance studio. We don't have much in savings and own two houses here, but we will be able to sell those before moving. Both of our credit records have taken major hits during a period in which our mortgage payments were falling very much behind, but we do have the income to be able to start applying for whatever documentation and visas we need. I am setting our goal time of finding a job (him or me, but enough income to live) and moving the family over there in 2 years, more or less, to be able to save enough to get us over there. But I don't know where to begin or how to prioritize. I've been reading this forum and finding some answers but a lot of the stuff I read on the British consulate website is confusing.
My questions are this:
1) should we spend the money and time to get him naturalized in the states? We know that we will eventually return when my parents need help on their farm but hope to be in the uk for at least 10 years. Can he apply to become a US citizen and then keep that citizenship if he leaves for several years?
2) What do I need to apply for as a US citizen? I am confused between right to abode and intent to stay - and do I apply for that now or once over there?
3) Will he (and our family) be eligible for NHS coverage since he has been out of the country for so long? I am finding conflicting answers when I search this forum.
4) Will he need to pay back taxes of some sort towards his pension? He says that the UK has a tax similar to our Social Security but that he will have to catch up on it once he is making an income there.
5) I'm reading that our kids are eligible for British passports as their have a British father. I know that I can apply for those from the states but can I do that now, and does that establish their citizenship or do I need to apply for something else?
6) How do I start building credit over there now from here? I don't want to get over there and struggle to rent a place to live or set up a bank account because we have no recent credit history. I have found ways for Europeans and Australians to set up accounts with HSBC but don't see the option for an UK account from the states, only a US account.

What am I missing? What should I start doing this far out? 1 to 2 years feels so long but also feels like not enough time at all.

Thanks for reading this.
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Old Sep 17th 2017, 8:02 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

I'm finding that we need an income of at least 29,600 gbp to be eligible to move back with all 4 kids, but is that to be covered by NHS, or to be granted my permission to live there? Or both?

And ignore the question about my visa, I've been reading some more posts and found the answer to that one, I think!
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Old Sep 17th 2017, 11:44 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

1. That would be highly advisable if you intend to return at any point. Citizenship is for life and does not expire unlike a Green Card.

2. Unless you have recent British, Irish or other European ancestry you will need to apply for a spouse visa. You will need to apply for this from the US. You cannot apply from within the UK as a visitor.

3. Providing you have your spouse visa and your husband and children have their British passports then you will all be entitled to free NHS care from day one.

4. He's not obliged to make voluntary National Insurance contributions for the years that he missed but it would be a smart financial move to do so to ensure he gets his full state pension. From memory you can pay up to six missed years.

5. Providing your husband was born in the UK then your children are already British citizens. You need only apply for their British passports. You should do this and have them in hand before lodging your spouse visa application.

6. Generally speaking you'll need to build up credit through residence. Some credit card companies will allow you to transfer your existing card to the UK. Your husband will likely still have a credit file from his previous residence in the UK.

7. As your children are British citizens your husband will only need to have an income of £18,600 pa in the US and a job offer in the UK with a salary of £18,600 pa starting within three months of your planned return in order to meet the financial requirements through salaried income. Your income will be irrelevant at this stage. If you own two properties which you intend to sell you may find it easier to meet the financial requirements through cash savings which requires you to hold £62,500 in liquid assets for at least six months prior to application unless the money is derived from the sale of property in which case you only need to show that you owned the property for at six months prior to application. The money can be held in your name, your husband's name or jointly.
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Old Sep 17th 2017, 11:54 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

duplicate - typed in at the same time as B-i-P who has covered the points.

Last edited by holly_1948; Sep 18th 2017 at 12:11 am.
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Old Sep 17th 2017, 11:55 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post
4. He's not obliged to make voluntary National Insurance contributions for the years that he missed but it would be a smart financial move to do so to ensure he gets his full state pension. From memory you can pay up to six missed years.
The maximum number of years that count towards a pension is 35. If he is going to have a total of 35 years of contributions, there would be no need to pay for the missed years. The State retirement age for him is probably 67, so that would mean potentially he could have up to 51 working years of contributions.

He can check how many years he has already by going to this site. https://www.gov.uk/check-national-insurance-record

Last edited by mrken30; Sep 18th 2017 at 1:34 am.
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 1:52 am
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Thank you for all the helpful information. I'll start with his citizenship and then the kids passports. We will be selling the houses, but I doubt that we would have that much in savings for selling them. We need to use what we get to pay off our student loans before we head over, anyways. I am hoping that between the two of us, we will not have too much trouble securing an income.

My to-do list feels like it will take the full 1.5 to 2 years!
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 2:37 am
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Originally Posted by mollymolybdenum View Post
Thank you for all the helpful information. I'll start with his citizenship and then the kids passports. We will be selling the houses, but I doubt that we would have that much in savings for selling them. We need to use what we get to pay off our student loans before we head over, anyways. I am hoping that between the two of us, we will not have too much trouble securing an income.

My to-do list feels like it will take the full 1.5 to 2 years!
Hello and welcome to BE.

If you have any questions or wish to discuss US citizenship or any other US related matters...may I suggest you post in our US forums?

USA - British Expats
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 8:29 am
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Hi, I would take a deep breath and relax too. Open a file with sections of what you have to do and slowly work through it. If you break up what you have to do in segments it becomes manageable. If you can open an HSBC account in USA then do it because when you intend to move over they will help you open your bank account in UK. BIP has answered all your questions very nicely.
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 9:18 am
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Originally Posted by mollymolybdenum View Post
Thank you for all the helpful information. I'll start with his citizenship and then the kids passports. We will be selling the houses, but I doubt that we would have that much in savings for selling them. We need to use what we get to pay off our student loans before we head over, anyways. I am hoping that between the two of us, we will not have too much trouble securing an income.

My to-do list feels like it will take the full 1.5 to 2 years!
Remember that for the first part of the spouse visa only the income of the British Citizen can be taken into account, for the second stage both incomes can count
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 10:53 am
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Scary monsters mollymolybdenum but I LOVE your username.
You need an avatar to match.

Welcome to BE. With a moniker like that , please stay around.

One to two years is no time at all and I do not care what anyone says, it's a huge move to make.

Breathe, hold your breath and breathe again. It is all a roller coaster but the fine people here in our UK forum will get you through.

As for me. I am hoping to get back to the UK myself.
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 1:42 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post

6. Generally speaking you'll need to build up credit through residence. Some credit card companies will allow you to transfer your existing card to the UK. Your husband will likely still have a credit file from his previous residence in the UK.

The husband will not have any credit history in the UK. They only stretch back for 6 years max
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 2:08 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Originally Posted by mollymolybdenum View Post
Thank you for all the helpful information. I'll start with his citizenship and then the kids passports. We will be selling the houses, but I doubt that we would have that much in savings for selling them. We need to use what we get to pay off our student loans before we head over, anyways. I am hoping that between the two of us, we will not have too much trouble securing an income.
My to-do list feels like it will take the full 1.5 to 2 years!
You don't have to pay off student loans!
You can get approximately 20 or 21 years' deferment of payments on student loans based on low income and - this is the crucial bit - the first approx. USD98000 per annum of foreign employment income does not count towards the income that is assessed to determine whether you qualify for deferment based on low income.
Which basically means you don't have to pay student loans if you emigrate and don't return provided you file the correct paperwork each year. Unless you become fabulously wealthy, then you would have to repay.
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 2:28 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Originally Posted by Inselaffen View Post
The husband will not have any credit history in the UK. They only stretch back for 6 years max
I found quite easy to re-build credit in UK, and some past information in UK was still on my file.
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 4:46 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

6. Generally speaking you'll need to build up credit through residence. Some credit card companies will allow you to transfer your existing card to the UK. Your husband will likely still have a credit file from his previous residence in the UK.

If by "credit file" you mean "credit history" this is not the case. We lived and worked in London 20 years before moving to Australia (for 8 years). On our return to the UK in 2016 we found that our (excellent) credit rating and credit history have been wiped clean in our 8 years absence and that we must now start building our credit rating from scratch.
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Old Sep 18th 2017, 4:53 pm
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Default Re: Moving back to the UK and I'm completely overwhelmed.

Your husband can check his UK credit report / score for free at Credit Club | Check Your Free Credit Report & Credit Score
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