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Bringing parents over from the UK

Bringing parents over from the UK

Old Oct 15th 2014, 3:05 pm
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Default Bringing parents over from the UK

I have been a US citizen for a couple years. I would to like to bring my parents to the US under a Green Card (under immediate relatives status) however neither are prepared to move from the UK at this stage.

Neither are getting any younger, and ill health is starting to creep in. I guess what I want is to make sure is that the paperwork is there, in place, should that time ever come where mum and/or dad decide that the move to the US (to live with me) is what they want to do. I know that there are possible drawbacks to this situation i.e. cost of health insurance, however at this stage my questions are two fold:

1) Should I put the paperwork in place now for my parents? i.e. I-130 (my concern with this is whether mum/dad would have to move to the US within a certain amount of time after approval - as I had to when I received my Green Card)

2) What is a ball park duration from start to finish for such paperwork (I understand that as immediate relatives there is not the wait list as there was when I applied for the GC)

Thank you in advance for help/guidance anyone can give

Ant
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Old Oct 15th 2014, 4:09 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

It doesn't really make sense to file an I-130 until about a year before they are actually ready to immigrate. The process can be dragged out, if necessary, for a few years, but there's no real advantage to doing that (that I can see). If you don't drag out the process, it takes about 8 to 10 months, and the visa will be valid for 6 months from the date the medical exam was done.

Probably easiest to just wait till they're wanting to immigate, then start the process.

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Old Oct 15th 2014, 4:55 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Besides what Rene said, if they are currently of working age and if one of them can work for 40 quarters before retirement, they will both be eligible for Medicare upon retirement without additional costs. If they wait too long, that could possibly be a show stopper due to the cost.
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Old Oct 15th 2014, 5:29 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Besides what Rene said, if they are currently of working age and if one of them can work for 40 quarters before retirement, they will both be eligible for Medicare upon retirement without additional costs. If they wait too long, that could possibly be a show stopper due to the cost.
Just to be clear, if one of them worked for 40 quarters, there would then be no cost for Medicare Part A. There would still be significant premiums for Medicare Part B, Part D, and Medicare Supplemental Insurance, OR for Medicare Part C if chosen. Also various other out of pocket expenses. Financial advisors often recommend budgeting at least $6,000 per person per annum for medical expenses, for folks who are eligible for Medicare Part A at no further cost.

Forewarned is forearmed as they say..
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Old Oct 15th 2014, 6:56 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Neither are at working age. Both retired. The health insurance hurdle will have to be dealt with as/when or if either or both decide that they would like to come live with me (which is what I want, but that is by the by).

Rene, thank you for your take. I assume therefore that there is no way all the paperwork can be put in place ahead of time so that mum/dad could come over with no restrictions? (with the exception that the paperwork is put in place and then mum and dad come over to the US within the 6 months from the medical exam, then head back to the UK until such time as is required, if ever) - just seeking to avoid matters being dragged out if this was to ever arise
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Old Oct 15th 2014, 8:22 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Well, like I said, you can drag out the process. .. file the I-130s, once approved (several months), it goes to NVC. Wait a year before responding to NVC. Once the case moves to London, wait a year to book medial and such. But the bottom line is that once everything is done, and visas are issued, they then only have 6 months from date of medical exam to move to the USA permanently.

They can enter the USA using the Immigrant visas and then return to the UK for a few months to tie up loose ends, but once they become US PRs they should not leave the USA for extended periods, or they risk losing PR status.

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Old Oct 15th 2014, 8:44 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

While you say that the health insurance hurdle will have to be looked at when and if they decide to come, is it not wise to do that now so you can ascertain whether you (or they) can afford the health premiums?

You say that ill health is starting to creep in so apart from premiums you are also looking at deductibles, co-pays for visits to doctors, treatment etc

You should be looking at what plans are available on your State's health insurance exchange (if no State exchange then look at the Federal one), and what the monthly premiums are. You should know what their income is going to be and whether they will qualify for subsidies.

They are not going to be eligible for Medicare until 5 years of residency and then they will have to pay for Part A since they have not paid into the system through employment. That part alone is currently $405.00 per person per month and that's only for hospitalisation.

As a minimum you could be looking at $1,000 per month in premiums alone for the pair of them.
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Old Oct 15th 2014, 10:54 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Rene, that's good to know. I wasn't aware that they could lose their PR status by returning to the UK for an extensive stay.

I've spoken to my wife about health insurance. We have insurance through her hospital (she is a nurse) so she'll check into open plans that might be available for adding additional people. I'll certainly look into the health insurance exchange (thanks San Diego Girl).

I really appreciate this open discussion. Food for thought.
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Old Oct 15th 2014, 11:21 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Usually parents can't be added to someone's insurance plan. .. only spouses, SOs and kids. But perhaps she has something special through the hospital.

Your folks should not really immigrate to the USA until they are ready to live here permanently, full time, with only short trips abroad for vacation.

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Old Oct 16th 2014, 12:02 am
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

If your parents move to the US they will need to buy private insurance for a few years (I think it might be 5) until they qualify for Medicare and then they will have to pay the whole premium themselves. There might be some state benefits available for people of green cards so check those out.....but be prepared to pay at least $1000 for health insurance plus substantial deductibles. There might be substantial subsidies available depending on your parents' income.
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Old Oct 16th 2014, 2:16 am
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

I've seen reports/ recommendations that a USC couple heading into retirement, assuming average health and Medicare coverage should expect to spend $250,000-$350,000 on health related expenses during their retirement.

Obviously without any Medicare entitlment, and having to foot their own insurance costs (which as has been debated here on BE before, appears to be outside the scope of the ACA health exchanges because "everyone" is assumed to be Medicare eligible) the costs are going to be very substantially higher. My stab-in-the-dark guess would be about twice as much or $600k +/-$100k.

Honestly, unless the OP or his parents are bona fide USD millionaires I doubt that the goal of bringing his parents to the US is viable.
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Old Oct 16th 2014, 4:07 am
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
I've seen reports/ recommendations that a USC couple heading into retirement, assuming average health and Medicare coverage should expect to spend $250,000-$350,000 on health related expenses during their retirement.

Obviously without any Medicare entitlment, and having to foot their own insurance costs (which as has been debated here on BE before, appears to be outside the scope of the ACA health exchanges because "everyone" is assumed to be Medicare eligible) the costs are going to be very substantially higher. My stab-in-the-dark guess would be about twice as much or $600k +/-$100k.

Honestly, unless the OP or his parents are bona fide USD millionaires I doubt that the goal of bringing his parents to the US is viable.
Even if they are over 65 I believe the parents will be eligible for ACA coverage if they are legally resident in the US. The costs and subsidies will depend on where they live and their income. A quick check for ACA +65 rate in MA shows rate s from $200 to $800 with the subsidy calculated with a $35k annual income. The deductibles and max expenses are high so they might expect to pay at least $10k a year if they get sick. After the qualify for medicare they will have to pay for Part A, B and D or an advantage plan which will probably cost around $800/month.

So it's all perfectly doable, but needs to be carefully budgeted.
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Old Oct 16th 2014, 12:29 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Originally Posted by nun View Post
....... The deductibles and max expenses are high so they might expect to pay at least $10k a year if they get sick. After the qualify for medicare they will have to pay for Part A, B and D or an advantage plan which will probably cost around $800/month. ....
So another $10k/yr
..... So it's all perfectly doable, but needs to be carefully budgeted.
You've given some numbers, but they come out at a minimum of $20k/person/yr, and if they live 20 years with "medical issues" that could easily come to $400k. If some years the OOP is greater and/or they live longer, the aggregate number is going to be squarely in the range I estimated, which therefore would be the prudent amount to budget for to ensure that they don't run out of money or become an undue burden on their son and his family.
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Old Oct 16th 2014, 12:50 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
So another $10k/yr

You've given some numbers, but they come out at a minimum of $20k/person/yr, and if they live 20 years with "medical issues" that could easily come to $400k. If some years the OOP is greater and/or they live longer, the aggregate number is going to be squarely in the range I estimated, which therefore would be the prudent amount to budget for to ensure that they don't run out of money or become an undue burden on their son and his family.
These lifetime numbers are scary and almost meaningless. Most people who even minimally plan for retirement have an annual income, not a lifetime income. That is, at death, income ceases, but so do expenditures and obligations. As I mentioned in an earlier post, those with Medicare probably need to budget $6,000 per person per annum. If Medicare eligible because of having been a PR for 5+ years, but having to pay for Part A, then that would be about $12,000 per person per annum. All achievable if budgeted in advance, as nun points out.
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Old Oct 16th 2014, 1:16 pm
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Default Re: Bringing parents over from the UK

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post

You've given some numbers, but they come out at a minimum of $20k/person/yr, and if they live 20 years with "medical issues" that could easily come to $400k. If some years the OOP is greater and/or they live longer, the aggregate number is going to be squarely in the range I estimated, which therefore would be the prudent amount to budget for to ensure that they don't run out of money or become an undue burden on their son and his family.
The premium quotes I got were for a silver plan in MA for 2 people over 65. The monthly premium after subsidy (assuming $35k annual income) ranged from $200 to $800, so a mid range plan at $500/month with a $9k family out of pocket max could cost $15k if you use a lot of care.

I'm retired in the US and pay $5k a year in premiums, but don't have any deductibles. Over 30 years my cost will be at least $150k......but I'll spend more on other things. Health insurance must be in your budget if you are coming to the US along with housing, food, cars, tax etc.

Last edited by nun; Oct 16th 2014 at 1:33 pm.
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