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Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Old Jul 19th 2007, 10:08 pm
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Default Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Hi all,

Great forum. (Posting on the missus' account, first time for yours truly, but I have lurked a bit).

We are set to move to Houston at the end of August, L1/L2 interviews in mid-August. My company's US legal bods have been smoothing that side of it for us, thank God.


1. We are in Houston this week, looking for rental accommodation, and are running into a bit of a Catch-22:

We can't get a bank account without a US address, and can't (easily) get a rental lease agreement without a bank account. (Money is not a problem, but the realtors don't work in cash for understandable safety reasons).

Any suggestions?
We can possibly use my boss' home address, but obviously could not prove residency (gas bills etc).

(I have read the recent thread on getting a bank account, some useful info there. Once we have an address we are looking forward to the SSN fight with the bank, thanks for posting the legal stuff )


2. When can I apply for an SSN? I need it before I start work, yes?

3. I have had a company car in the UK for the past few years, so don't have a no-claims history per se. Anything I can do there to reduce my initial insurance premium, or do I just have to bite the bullet? (Maybe I can get a letter from my company's insurers?)


4. I want to buy a one-way, flexible ticket to the US for the August move. I want to buy it now, i.e. ahead of receiving the L1 visa.

First response I got from the airline was that I have to be a US citizen in order to buy a one-way ticket. Anyone got any experience of that?


All replies gratefully received!
Motorskills
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 10:30 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

You don't need a US address or social security no. In Houston, choose Wank of America or Wells Fargo. Go in and say you're a foreigner and want a free checking account with internet access. You don't need a SSN and you can give your UK address. Tell the banker you'll view your statements on line and you don't want *any* of their advertising junk. Have them send your checks and ATM/debit card to the banker at the bank -- you can pick them up in person. Tools required: one passport and some other form of ID with your name on it, e.g. a UK credit card. Don't try and open a savings account yet -- not worth the hassle.
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Old Jul 19th 2007, 10:54 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Terminal View Post
Hi all,

Great forum. (Posting on the missus' account, first time for yours truly, but I have lurked a bit).

We are set to move to Houston at the end of August, L1/L2 interviews in mid-August. My company's US legal bods have been smoothing that side of it for us, thank God.


1. We are in Houston this week, looking for rental accommodation, and are running into a bit of a Catch-22:

We can't get a bank account without a US address, and can't (easily) get a rental lease agreement without a bank account. (Money is not a problem, but the realtors don't work in cash for understandable safety reasons).

Any suggestions?
We can possibly use my boss' home address, but obviously could not prove residency (gas bills etc).

(I have read the recent thread on getting a bank account, some useful info there. Once we have an address we are looking forward to the SSN fight with the bank, thanks for posting the legal stuff )


2. When can I apply for an SSN? I need it before I start work, yes?

3. I have had a company car in the UK for the past few years, so don't have a no-claims history per se. Anything I can do there to reduce my initial insurance premium, or do I just have to bite the bullet? (Maybe I can get a letter from my company's insurers?)


4. I want to buy a one-way, flexible ticket to the US for the August move. I want to buy it now, i.e. ahead of receiving the L1 visa.

First response I got from the airline was that I have to be a US citizen in order to buy a one-way ticket. Anyone got any experience of that?


All replies gratefully received!
Motorskills
1. Can't your company help finance the rental? They pay...you pay them back.

2. I don't think you need a SS no to start work...just a visa allowing you to work.

3. You just have to start at the bottom with car insuance.

4. It is often cheaper to buy a return ticket anyhow.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 1:29 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

It is often a lot cheaper to buy a quasi-flexible ticket. The $100-$200 penalty you will pay on the fare change is considerably cheaper than paying for a full fare flexible.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 1:53 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
2. I don't think you need a SS no to start work...just a visa allowing you to work.
I am really curious about this. My wife received her work permit about two months ago and went into the Social Security place to get her SSN; they insisted on sending everything off to Homeland Security, and she has been waiting to begin work until she gets the SSN. If it's true that she can work *without* the SSN, that would be a big boost for us because we don't know how long we will have to wait for the SSN. (They said two months, but who knows how long it will be?) Many thanks for any help with this, and apologies for piggy-backing onto someone else's thread!
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 2:04 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Goodacre View Post
I am really curious about this. My wife received her work permit about two months ago and went into the Social Security place to get her SSN; they insisted on sending everything off to Homeland Security, and she has been waiting to begin work until she gets the SSN. If it's true that she can work *without* the SSN, that would be a big boost for us because we don't know how long we will have to wait for the SSN. (They said two months, but who knows how long it will be?) Many thanks for any help with this, and apologies for piggy-backing onto someone else's thread!
She should just apply for jobs and not say a word about her lack of SSN. When she fills in the I-9 on the first day, she has up to 3 days to provide a receipt from the local social security office showing she has applied for one, and 90 days from the start of employment to produce the actual number with the card. If they fire her for not having one, she can set the feds on them for discrimination.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 3:00 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by fatbrit View Post
She should just apply for jobs and not say a word about her lack of SSN. When she fills in the I-9 on the first day, she has up to 3 days to provide a receipt from the local social security office showing she has applied for one, and 90 days from the start of employment to produce the actual number with the card. If they fire her for not having one, she can set the feds on them for discrimination.
Thanks loads for the advice, fatbrit. She applied for the SSN on May 8, so it's been a good long wait; but she has got the receipt from the office with a ref. number and all the rest of it. We've been here two years now, and it would be great if she is able to start working soon.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 4:29 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Goodacre View Post
Thanks loads for the advice, fatbrit. She applied for the SSN on May 8, so it's been a good long wait; but she has got the receipt from the office with a ref. number and all the rest of it. We've been here two years now, and it would be great if she is able to start working soon.
I suppose it depends on the kind of work she does and where she works. My wife has always worked for small companies and businesses, although she has a GC she has never been asked to show it or proves she's here legally.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 4:31 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Terminal View Post
Hi all,

We can't get a bank account without a US address, and can't (easily) get a rental lease agreement without a bank account. (Money is not a problem, but the realtors don't work in cash for understandable safety reasons).

Any suggestions?
We can possibly use my boss' home address, but obviously could not prove residency (gas bills etc).

(I
3. I have had a company car in the UK for the past few years, so don't have a no-claims history per se. Anything I can do there to reduce my initial insurance premium, or do I just have to bite the bullet? (Maybe I can get a letter from my company's insurers?)



All replies gratefully received!
Motorskills
We bank with Citizens in the US as they are part of the RBS group, who we already banked with. However OH's company have an arrangement with Bank Of America, and so we could have opened an account with them. No SS needed.

Car insurance ...try AIG but you MUST deal with their International Dept.My OH also had a company car and didn't have a no claims history either.

we bought return flights because they were cheaper than one way.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 4:34 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Terminal View Post
Hi all,



3. I have had a company car in the UK for the past few years, so don't have a no-claims history per se. Anything I can do there to reduce my initial insurance premium, or do I just have to bite the bullet? (Maybe I can get a letter from my company's insurers?)



Bring with you a letter showing your no claims discount or a statement of how long since you made a claim. Also bring with you as many of the insurance certificates you have. We gave the company in the US a letter but they also want edthe certificates as they had the dates on them and they could see we had continuous insurance. In our case two years certificates were enough to get us a good drivers discount.

One thing you might find here is insurance premiums are partly dependant on your credit score and you will have zero credit rating in the US so might take a bit of a knock on that.

Also we went to a broker and took all our insurance, house and cars, from the same company worth a good discount.

We used Farmers and they were happy to insure me on my UK licence.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 5:07 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
Bring with you a letter showing your no claims discount or a statement of how long since you made a claim. Also bring with you as many of the insurance certificates you have. We gave the company in the US a letter but they also want edthe certificates as they had the dates on them and they could see we had continuous insurance. In our case two years certificates were enough to get us a good drivers discount.
waste of time for most states, they don't take it into consideration, and if they say they do, it's a sales pitch.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 5:26 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

First response I got from the airline was that I have to be a US citizen in order to buy a one-way ticket. Anyone got any experience of that?



Im sure i got one way ticket in 2002 and that was never implied then .
But you do often find that a return one is cheaper or only slightly dearer than one way.

Good luck..
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 5:33 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by unicorndreams View Post
First response I got from the airline was that I have to be a US citizen in order to buy a one-way ticket. Anyone got any experience of that?



Im sure i got one way ticket in 2002 and that was never implied then .
But you do often find that a return one is cheaper or only slightly dearer than one way.

Good luck..
I don't have experience but US Immigration will not let you enter the US without a return ticket. The airline have to transport you back at their expense..that's the reason they will not sell you a one way ticket.

As I said before it is usually cheaper to buy a return ticket than a one way ticket.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 6:22 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
waste of time for most states, they don't take it into consideration, and if they say they do, it's a sales pitch.
No it wasn't a sale pitch, certainly in Oregon.

When we first did the insurance I only had the letter but the broker gave us the discount. Later the insurance premium went up because Farmers wanted something which showed the dates we were insured. When they were faxed copies of two insurance certificates to show both of us were insured drivers in the UK, the premium went back down in fact below what the broker had charged originally.

I tend to post facts on here I know from personal experience to be true not conjecture.
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Old Jul 20th 2007, 6:26 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA - need some help in overcoming some hurdles

Originally Posted by unicorndreams View Post
First response I got from the airline was that I have to be a US citizen in order to buy a one-way ticket. Anyone got any experience of that?



Im sure i got one way ticket in 2002 and that was never implied then .
But you do often find that a return one is cheaper or only slightly dearer than one way.

Good luck..
If it does transpire a one way ticket is cheaper tell the airline the visa you have and will be travelling on, and that it will be presented for inspection by them when you check in.

They are covering themselves because as Jerseygirl said they have to bring you back at their expense and USCIS will fine them $2000 (I think that is the current figure) on top of that.
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