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Should we wait for citizenship?

Should we wait for citizenship?

Old Jun 19th 2020, 5:59 am
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Default Should we wait for citizenship?

Been in LA for over 8yrs, as of April this year we can apply for citizenship. I want to go home, husband isn’t 100% onboard so it’s an ongoing (argument) conversation but one thing I think we both agree on is getting our citizenship in place, to give us options to work for US companies easily (he’s in tech, I’m in entertainment), to move back if it’s the wrong decision and to allow options for our children later on because who know what the world will look like in 10/20years.

I know about the annual filing you have to do etc and have read a few threads on the forum to bone up on that side of things. My fear is it will take so much longer because of Covid shut downs and it was already looking like a good year. Eldest child is about to start middle school so I really feel like if we don’t go home by next summer we are leaving it too late.

I’ve been so homesick for so long and I know brexit and Boris and everything else but I just want out of the US now, husband is being more realistic and isn’t as tied to the U.K. as I am. Honestly I feel like moving back this summer wouldn’t be a bad idea except for the citizenship thing. We didn’t have to pay for our visas then green cards so become visa less again feels like looking a gift horse in the mouth somewhat...
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 7:47 am
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by mymatemarmite View Post
Been in LA for over 8yrs, as of April this year we can apply for citizenship. I want to go home, husband isn’t 100% onboard so it’s an ongoing (argument) conversation but one thing I think we both agree on is getting our citizenship in place, to give us options to work for US companies easily (he’s in tech, I’m in entertainment), to move back if it’s the wrong decision and to allow options for our children later on because who know what the world will look like in 10/20years.

I know about the annual filing you have to do etc and have read a few threads on the forum to bone up on that side of things. My fear is it will take so much longer because of Covid shut downs and it was already looking like a good year. Eldest child is about to start middle school so I really feel like if we don’t go home by next summer we are leaving it too late.

I’ve been so homesick for so long and I know brexit and Boris and everything else but I just want out of the US now, husband is being more realistic and isn’t as tied to the U.K. as I am. Honestly I feel like moving back this summer wouldn’t be a bad idea except for the citizenship thing. We didn’t have to pay for our visas then green cards so become visa less again feels like looking a gift horse in the mouth somewhat...
Only you can decide what's more important. However, you don't need US citizenship to work for US companies. No longer in the UK myself but have always worked for US companies here in Ireland.
Unless your plan is to move back to the US and you feel you are American, what is really worth these days if you come from a country that has social security and the passport allows you to travel? In my opinion it's just another country that wants you to report and pay taxes on worldwide income.
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 1:48 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Honestly I would just move back tomorrow without a glance backwards, part of me wonders if the U.K. is a better sell to husband if we know we can come back if it all goes tits up. FWIW if I were to work for an American company it would be in America (freelance basis) so would have to get a visa to do so, so this does make me more attractive to employ as there would be no hoops to jump through.
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 2:02 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

I'd definitely wait for citizenship - it opens up options for both you and your children, and remember it is not unusual for people to return to the UK only to find that life isn't what they expected, that the UK, and/or their friends and family have moved on and they end up moving back (to the US, or whichever other country they went to).

Last edited by Pulaski; Jun 19th 2020 at 2:44 pm.
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 2:43 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
I'd definitely wait for citzenship - it opens up options for both you and your children, and remember it is not unusual for people to return to the UK only to find that life isn't what they expected, that the UK, and/or their friends and family have moved on and they end up moving back (to the US, or whichever other country they went to).
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 2:58 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Citizenship. I would go for that. I have to agree with Pulaski.
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 3:15 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

I would also apply for citizenship, good options for the children as well as yourselves. Also, if you have been working for 8 years in the USA already then you are close to qualifying for Social Security which is well worth having. You may well find that 10 years of paying into SS will yield similar to 30 years of NI contributions. My wife’s SS of 11years contributions will be paying about the same as her OAP after 31 years of NI contributions (she is due to start drawing both next year)
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 3:21 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by durham_lad View Post
I would also apply for citizenship, good options for the children as well as yourselves. Also, if you have been working for 8 years in the USA already then you are close to qualifying for Social Security .....
Depending on earnings and when they arrived, with "eight years" in the US they may already have ten years of qualification.

Although qualification for US SS is notionally by quarters it is calculated annually, and I was credited with a full year of SS eligibility for 2001 despite only starting work in the US on November 12, 2001. I later left my job on June 28th 2002 and didn't restart until January 2003 but was also credited with a full year for 2002, so I got two years of SS eligibility with only 32 weeks of work.

Last edited by Pulaski; Jun 19th 2020 at 3:25 pm.
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 4:04 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by mymatemarmite View Post
Honestly I would just move back tomorrow without a glance backwards, part of me wonders if the U.K. is a better sell to husband if we know we can come back if it all goes tits up. FWIW if I were to work for an American company it would be in America (freelance basis) so would have to get a visa to do so, so this does make me more attractive to employ as there would be no hoops to jump through.
Sure but then you have the tax situation. It always depends on your personal circumstances.
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 4:05 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Thanks everyone - that’s our gut instinct to go for citizenship so it’s good to hear that others agree. Now I just need to convince him to move back once we have it. I’m so over being here
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 4:32 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

You can still travel while the application is in process right?
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Old Jun 19th 2020, 4:34 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by mymatemarmite View Post
You can still travel while the application is in process right?
Yes. ..... There was even a case a few years ago here on BE of someone who had emigrated to Australia after submitting their application and came beck for the interview. They were also able to get a same day/ short notice oath ceremony while they were back visiting the US.
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Old Jun 20th 2020, 7:11 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by durham_lad View Post
I would also apply for citizenship, good options for the children as well as yourselves. Also, if you have been working for 8 years in the USA already then you are close to qualifying for Social Security which is well worth having. You may well find that 10 years of paying into SS will yield similar to 30 years of NI contributions. My wife’s SS of 11years contributions will be paying about the same as her OAP after 31 years of NI contributions (she is due to start drawing both next year)
The US/UK SS agreement means they'll likely qualify with 8 years. So the argument comes down to whether 2 extra years of contributions will make a big difference given that 35 years of contributions are used to determine payment.
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Old Jun 20th 2020, 9:18 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by Giantaxe View Post
The US/UK SS agreement means they'll likely qualify with 8 years. So the argument comes down to whether 2 extra years of contributions will make a big difference given that 35 years of contributions are used to determine payment.
The SS payment calculations have “bend points” which I don’t pretend to understand but it means it is far from linear, unlike the UK OAP calculation. 2 extra years on top of 8 or 10 makes a much larger increase in benefits than 2 extra years on top of 20 years.

https://www.ssa.gov/OACT/COLA/piaformula.html

https://www.fool.com/retirement/2018...benefit-f.aspx
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Old Jun 20th 2020, 10:28 pm
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Default Re: Should we wait for citizenship?

Originally Posted by durham_lad View Post
The SS payment calculations have “bend points” which I don’t pretend to understand but it means it is far from linear, unlike the UK OAP calculation. 2 extra years on top of 8 or 10 makes a much larger increase in benefits than 2 extra years on top of 20 years.

https://www.ssa.gov/OACT/COLA/piaformula.html

https://www.fool.com/retirement/2018...benefit-f.aspx
It is certainly not linear so I agree it would have more impact percentage-wise than a similar number of extra years of UK NI contributions. I guess you'd have to plug in your specific 8 years of earnings -along with 27 years of $0 earnings into the formula versus 10 years and 25 years of $0 earnings. Might have to think about WEP too?
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