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Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Old Sep 26th 2023, 10:10 pm
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Default Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Moving back to UK and going to claim social security at 63 rather than waiting till 67 ( the difference in payments by 80 was $6000less)
My question is should I pay for Medicare part B - I doubt that I would come to the US for treatment but is it worth paying as a back up ? Also how does it work if I came to US for treatment - do I need to become a resident ? Not sure it’s worth it or should I take out a private plan in the Uk?
Does social security deduct this from my check?
Lastly, when social security pays your money into a foreign ( uk) bank account do they get a better rate or should I send it to a Wise account then have it transferred,
I appreciate any help you can give
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Old Sep 27th 2023, 12:46 pm
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Originally Posted by Spenser
Moving back to UK and going to claim social security at 63 rather than waiting till 67 ( the difference in payments by 80 was $6000less)
My question is should I pay for Medicare part B - I doubt that I would come to the US for treatment but is it worth paying as a back up ? Also how does it work if I came to US for treatment - do I need to become a resident ? Not sure it’s worth it or should I take out a private plan in the Uk?
Does social security deduct this from my check?
Lastly, when social security pays your money into a foreign ( uk) bank account do they get a better rate or should I send it to a Wise account then have it transferred,
I appreciate any help you can give
I would recommend paying your Part B. It is painless, as SS will deduct it from your SS payment, from age 65. Even if you do not currently intend to move back to the USA to live, paying for Part B will mean that you keep that option open. I believe you do not need to be a US resident to get Medicare treatment when in the US. I’ve read that many people who are residents of Mexico, for instance, rely on Medicare for their treatment in the US.
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Old Sep 27th 2023, 2:44 pm
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

The Part B premium varies with income, starts at about $165 per month and goes up from there depending upon your income. Remember that income includes all capital gains, house sales, etc. Take a look at want your premium will be, and remember that you still have to pay 20% of the treatment cost or take out a separate private Medicare/Medicare Advantage policy to cover that gap. And you also have to pay for separate prescription coverage. Is it worth it? Consider that coming back for treatment will require a visa of some kind if you are not a citizen or relinquish/abandon your Green Card. It’s possible they may not approve a visa if treatment is available wherever you live. I am sure you know that they do not normally pay for treatment outside of the US. Only Medicare Advantage plans will pay for emergency treatment outside the US but that is a separate and additional policy to standard Medicare, and likely there would be no cost anyway provided you are covered by the NHS. Those plans will not pay for non emergency situations like cancer, diabetes, etc. If it was me and I was sure I was not going to return to the US permanently then I would use the funds for a private UK policy if I was not satisfied that the NHS would meet my needs. Returning to the US for medical treatment would likely incur a lot of additional living costs that may make the treatment a lot more expensive than you initially thought.

Last edited by Glasgow Girl; Sep 27th 2023 at 3:03 pm.
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Old Sep 27th 2023, 4:58 pm
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

You won't be eligible for Medicare until you are 65. You have two more years to wait to enroll.
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Old Sep 27th 2023, 5:52 pm
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

We are both USCs living in the UK. My wife is taking her SS and it is paid directly into our UK bank. You won’t get a better rate on the day, no fees or anything. At 65 we both signed up to Medicare part A which is free but declined part B, deciding to simply buy travel/health insurance when we go there to visit like all other tourists. We are both age 68 now and SS is paid gross, no part B deductions, no tax withholding.

You don’t have to sign up for Medicare at all, part A or B.
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Old Sep 28th 2023, 11:53 pm
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Originally Posted by durham_lad
We are both USCs living in the UK. My wife is taking her SS and it is paid directly into our UK bank. You won’t get a better rate on the day, no fees or anything. At 65 we both signed up to Medicare part A which is free but declined part B, deciding to simply buy travel/health insurance when we go there to visit like all other tourists. We are both age 68 now and SS is paid gross, no part B deductions, no tax withholding.

You don’t have to sign up for Medicare at all, part A or B.
Thank you - you always give great advice and I appreciate it. When you say you get a better rate transferring your SS directly into you UK Bank account what do you mean - presumably the UK bank charges an exchange rate from dollars into pounds and a fee? or does it come in as pounds? - I was wondering if it was better to transfer it to WISE then send it to my account in the UK. Any thoughts? Also wondered if you had looked into renouncing US citizenship so your not failing tax return the rest of your life in the US
I appreciate it


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Old Sep 29th 2023, 1:05 am
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Originally Posted by Spenser
Thank you - you always give great advice and I appreciate it. When you say you get a better rate transferring your SS directly into you UK Bank account what do you mean - presumably the UK bank charges an exchange rate from dollars into pounds and a fee? or does it come in as pounds? - I was wondering if it was better to transfer it to WISE then send it to my account in the UK. Any thoughts? Also wondered if you had looked into renouncing US citizenship so your not failing tax return the rest of your life in the US
I appreciate it

I’m sure it is the reverse of what happens when the UK government transfers my UK pension directly into my US bank account. It arrives in dollars and there are no fees.
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Old Sep 29th 2023, 7:22 am
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Originally Posted by Spenser
Thank you - you always give great advice and I appreciate it. When you say you get a better rate transferring your SS directly into you UK Bank account what do you mean - presumably the UK bank charges an exchange rate from dollars into pounds and a fee? or does it come in as pounds? - I was wondering if it was better to transfer it to WISE then send it to my account in the UK. Any thoughts? Also wondered if you had looked into renouncing US citizenship so your not failing tax return the rest of your life in the US
I appreciate it
Just as nutmegger says, no fees at all anywhere. I keep a spreadsheet and each time a SS payment arrives, in £, I enter it and see what exchange rate I got as I know the gross amount paid in $. It is always better than I could have got with Wise, which I use a lot. (Did a Wise transfer this week in fact). You could get your SS paid in $ and try to time the exchange rates using Wise to transfer it over but that is a mugs game I think.

We would renounce our US citizenship except the vast amount of our income comes from the USA in private pensions, IRA distributions and SS, so renouncing would not, I think, stop us from filing both Federal and State tax returns. We still have after tax investments as well in my wife’s name although at the rate we are drawing those down they should be gone in about 6 years - distributions from those accounts are taxed by HMRC so transferring too quickly would be a huge tax hit - need to not hit the 40% band. We would not be bothered by the “exit tax” should we renounce, that would be a nice problem to have to ponder.
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Old Oct 1st 2023, 3:18 am
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Originally Posted by Spenser
Moving back to UK and going to claim social security at 63 rather than waiting till 67 ( the difference in payments by 80 was $6000less)
My question is should I pay for Medicare part B - I doubt that I would come to the US for treatment but is it worth paying as a back up ? Also how does it work if I came to US for treatment - do I need to become a resident ? Not sure it’s worth it or should I take out a private plan in the Uk?
Does social security deduct this from my check?
Lastly, when social security pays your money into a foreign ( uk) bank account do they get a better rate or should I send it to a Wise account then have it transferred,
I appreciate any help you can give
Don’t forget about Part D drug coverage. If one delays in obtaining that coverage, there is a surcharge on the monthly premium when you do get it.
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Old Oct 1st 2023, 12:03 pm
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Default Re: Moving from US to Uk - thoughts on medicare

Originally Posted by S Folinsky
Don’t forget about Part D drug coverage. If one delays in obtaining that coverage, there is a surcharge on the monthly premium when you do get it.
Yes, and Part B too - there will be a surcharge on that too, if one delays taking it up. That is why I recommended taking it up if there’s any chance of return to live in the US.
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