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Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Old Jul 25th 2016, 6:53 pm
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Default Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Hi all -

Long(ish) time lurker here. About me: I'm originally British, lived in Canada for 15 years and have recently moved to Minneapolis (my husband is on an L1 visa).

We sold our house in Ontario and need to move the money here so we can buy a house. Our Canadian bank told us to write a check to ourselves when we got here. The bank won't accept that (understandably- it sound a bit hmmm just writing it!). Our US bank suggested a wire but we can't initiate a wire from here, it has to be from our home country. I understand that there are third parties that can transfer money but the amount we want to transfer is higher than many of their limits ($500k+).

Does anyone have any ideas about how we could do this without leaving the states? We have two small children and a trip back to Canada is high on my list of things to avoid at the moment. Do you know of any foreign exchange companies who can transfer the large sum we're talking about? Am I missing something glaringly obvious?

Thanks!

PS Our move south went well apart from my husband's SSN paperwork which seems to have disappeared from the system. When he queried it at the office he was sent back to immigration with a two week wait for an appointment. So who knows when it'll arrive... Other than that we're settling in well!
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 7:44 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by lps33 View Post
I understand that there are third parties that can transfer money but the amount we want to transfer is higher than many of their limits ($500k+).
I think I have seen other posters report that these limits may be lifted temporarily by talking directly to the transfer companies, often for such large sums a better rate can also be negotiated at the same time.
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 8:09 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Are you saying that you can't initiate a wire for that much using the bank's web site, or that the bank refuses to send a wire until you visit a bank branch? ..... I am thinking you mean the former, in which case phone the bank's customer service line and get some advice, because I will guarantee that you aren't the first people to leave Canada and need to send the proceeds of a house sale after you have left the country.

BTW if you try to deposit a CAD check into a US bank you will likely get a horrible exchange rate.
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Old Jul 26th 2016, 2:09 am
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Thanks, both, for your replies. I spent a good chunk of this afternoon on the phone with my branch in Toronto, but will move it higher / investigate further tomorrow. And yes, re the check. We thought it was really odd advice for our Canadian bank to give us.
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Old Jul 28th 2016, 11:39 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

I've had this problem, you have to get special authorization (I think it's called a "draw facility" or something like that) from the bank which means you have to appear in person at the bank. Which is not a problem if you happen to be in Canada...

My bank wouldn't do it unless I showed up at a branch in Canada but my understanding is that some of them will let you do it if you show up at an "affiliated" bank in the US to prove that you are who you say you are, so say you bank with TD, you might be able to go to a TD branch in the US. You'd have to talk to the bank in Canada.

The bank won't accept that (understandably- it sound a bit hmmm just writing it!).
You can do that, is it in CAD? You can open a USD account with your bank in Canada and just write a cheque for that amount, I've done it that way from the US to Canada in the past.

The problem is that the bank in Canada has to be registered with the US treasury dept and usually they aren't, so that means the US bank has to hold the cheque for awhile to wait for it to clear.

Or once again, there is this "US affiliated" bank thing, you open up a bank account with a bank the Canadian bank trusts, you transfer the money from the Canadian bank to the US bank and they give you access to the funds once you show up in person.

It is a real game to do it, I know exactly the situation you're in. In my case what I ended up doing was getting a USD credit card and they temporarily agreed to a much higher limit, but you can't do that for a house! But I could have done the cheque thing, it was just faster and cheaper to get a card than a cheque book.

Bear in mind if your US bank won't accept the Canadian cheque, that's not to say no US bank will, go round all the banks locally and find one that will.

If the bank in Canada won't let you write a cheque for that amount then bollocks to that bank, not sure what you do at that point.

Last edited by Steve_; Jul 28th 2016 at 11:43 pm.
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Old Jul 29th 2016, 6:32 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Use TorFX Used them to transfer money from the UK in to US Dollars to buy our house in Maine. Recommend them. They will convert into the currency you want and then pay the recipient directly.
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Old Jul 30th 2016, 1:18 am
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

This isn't a forex issue, the bank simply won't let her pull the money out. If you want to convert CAD into USD, that isn't an issue, Canadian banks have very favourable rates on that. Large numbers of Canadians have USD accounts at their local bank.
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Old Jul 30th 2016, 11:47 am
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
This isn't a forex issue, the bank simply won't let her pull the money out. If you want to convert CAD into USD, that isn't an issue, Canadian banks have very favourable rates on that. Large numbers of Canadians have USD accounts at their local bank.
I had the same issue. Could only move £25k a day so I did it gradually. Yes it took ages but it worked out fine as I gave myself enough time to do it.
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Old Jul 30th 2016, 12:23 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by lps33 View Post
Hi all -

Long(ish) time lurker here. About me: I'm originally British, lived in Canada for 15 years and have recently moved to Minneapolis (my husband is on an L1 visa).

We sold our house in Ontario and need to move the money here so we can buy a house. Our Canadian bank told us to write a check to ourselves when we got here. The bank won't accept that (understandably- it sound a bit hmmm just writing it!). Our US bank suggested a wire but we can't initiate a wire from here, it has to be from our home country. I understand that there are third parties that can transfer money but the amount we want to transfer is higher than many of their limits ($500k+).

Does anyone have any ideas about how we could do this without leaving the states? We have two small children and a trip back to Canada is high on my list of things to avoid at the moment. Do you know of any foreign exchange companies who can transfer the large sum we're talking about? Am I missing something glaringly obvious?

Thanks!

PS Our move south went well apart from my husband's SSN paperwork which seems to have disappeared from the system. When he queried it at the office he was sent back to immigration with a two week wait for an appointment. So who knows when it'll arrive... Other than that we're settling in well!
There is a company called TEMPUS in the US which is very very good on exchange rates , and deals routinely with transfers between countries, they would be first place I would call.
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Old Jul 30th 2016, 4:21 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by Elliecat View Post
I had the same issue. Could only move £25k a day so I did it gradually. Yes it took ages but it worked out fine as I gave myself enough time to do it.
That can irritate the receiving bank, and/or even the sending bank, because it looks like you're up to no good. The result can be a report to the national criminal agency - FinCEN in the US, FINTRAC in Canada, or the National Crime Agency in the UK (most other countries have a similar investigative agency to receive such reports).

It is likely nothing will come of such reports, but personally I wouldn't want such a report filed by my bank about me.
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Old Jul 31st 2016, 9:21 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

That's why I used torfx. It was moved in the uk then converted to dollars and moved as a lump. So no report triggered. Do your research before posting!
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Old Jul 31st 2016, 9:50 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by Elliecat View Post
That's why I used torfx. It was moved in the uk then converted to dollars and moved as a lump. So no report triggered. Do your research before posting!
I'm not a mind reader - in post #8 you said you moved £25k a day. It is only in post #11 that you added that you accumulated at TorFX and sent it on in one lump sum. ...... In any case the bank that you trickled the money out of might have been purturbed and filed a report.
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Old Jul 31st 2016, 10:15 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
I'm not a mind reader - in post #8 you said you moved £25k a day. It is only in post #11 that you added that you accumulated at TorFX and sent it on in one lump sum. ...... In any case the bank that you trickled the money out of might have been purturbed and filed a report.
The reports or due diligence a bank does on foreign transfers in/out of accounts vary from (a) required (b) random (c) specific reports when a bank for some reason wishes to question a transaction. The customer doesn't always know when and to whom such reports sent.
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Old Jul 31st 2016, 10:33 pm
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Originally Posted by morpeth View Post
The reports or due diligence a bank does on foreign transfers in/out of accounts vary from (a) required (b) random (c) specific reports when a bank for some reason wishes to question a transaction. ....
This is correct.
..... The customer doesn't always know when and to whom such reports sent.
This is not correct - the information surrounding, and existence of, the reports is legally privileged and the customer has no right, under any circumstances, to know what research was performed, whether a report was sent, and the contents of any report if one was sent.

This information cannot be obtained even by subpoena, court order, nor witness cross-examination. It is, legally speaking, "undiscoverable." In very rare instances the existance of a report is leaked or disclosed by accident.

All that said, who the report would be sent to is a matter of public knowledge, and I posted the names of the three agencies in the US, Canada, and the UK that receive the reports in post #10, above. If the reports were sent by the bank to anyone else, the information would not be legally privileged as I described above.

Last edited by Pulaski; Jul 31st 2016 at 10:38 pm.
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Old Aug 1st 2016, 1:22 am
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Default Re: Moving a large (six figure) sum of money to US

Thanks for your suggestions and comments. My husband has actually been called back to his Toronto office for a few days so he can pop to our local bank to do the transfer. They have agreed, by phone, that he can do it by himself; they don't need me there too.
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