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Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Old Dec 13th 2010, 5:11 pm
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Default Relinquishing GC and moving back home

As those of you who remember me will know, I’ve not been exactly happy here in the US. I have been spending increasingly long periods back home, but on recent re-entries I have been questioned about my long absences. For me there really is no point in prolonging this for much longer, so I am planning to hand back by Green Card in the next year or so (via form I-407), and move back permanently.

Hubby is planning to stay for another 2-3 years before taking early retirement and joining me in Blighty. He is currently debating whether to go for citizenship or not. He’d rather not but is concerned about stuff like SS and the pension/401 stuff he’s accumulated here.

I’m wondering whether I could still visit him on the VWP, or should I try and get a B1/B2 visa. Also, should I cash in my own (self-employed) pension contributions or could I get my pension once I hit 65 without complicated US tax implications.

I remember reading that if one has been a Permanent Resident for 8 years (or more than 8 years? Not sure…), one has to continue to file taxes with the IRS for another 10 years. How would this be affected if my husband remained in the US for 8+ years, or if he became a citizen? Could he just file his income etc separately while I file mine in the UK?

All we really want to do is draw a big fat line in the sand re. the past decade in the US and get on with our lives in England – without shooting ourselves in the foot financially. Any suggestions on how best to achieve this welcome!
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 5:18 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY Elvira I've been missing you.

Sorry no idea about the pension questions, we are totally flummoxed about our own pension situation, but just wanted to say hi and good luck with your decision.

I think you still have 2 sons in the US, will they be staying here?
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 6:23 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Elvira View Post
I’m wondering whether I could still visit him on the VWP, or should I try and get a B1/B2 visa.
To my knowledge, you can still use the VWP. Having been a US PR for a while doesn't take that away.

I remember reading that if one has been a Permanent Resident for 8 years (or more than 8 years? Not sure…), one has to continue to file taxes with the IRS for another 10 years. How would this be affected if my husband remained in the US for 8+ years, or if he became a citizen? Could he just file his income etc separately while I file mine in the UK?
If he becomes a USC, he will forever be required to file a US tax return to report his world-wide income. He won't necessarily pay any US taxes, but will be required to report the income.

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Old Dec 13th 2010, 9:02 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Elvira View Post
Hubby is planning to stay for another 2-3 years before taking early retirement and joining me in Blighty. He is currently debating whether to go for citizenship or not. He’d rather not but is concerned about stuff like SS and the pension/401 stuff he’s accumulated here.
What is he concerned about that citizenship is going to make a difference to?

Originally Posted by Elvira View Post
I’m wondering whether I could still visit him on the VWP, or should I try and get a B1/B2 visa. Also, should I cash in my own (self-employed) pension contributions or could I get my pension once I hit 65 without complicated US tax implications.
Cashing out retirement savings seems like a poor idea as you're going to pay tax on that income right now, lose the ability for those savings to grow tax-deferred and incur a 10% penalty (assuming you're under 59 1/2). If you have income in retirement from the US, you are almost certainly going to have file a US tax return in addition to a UK one. But you're unlikely to end up being double taxed on that income.
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 9:37 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Just get a re-entry permit ..that will give you 2 years out to decide
and still enable you to travel ..and you can renew it
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 9:56 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Ray View Post
Just get a re-entry permit ..that will give you 2 years out to decide
and still enable you to travel ..and you can renew it
Sort of. He still needs to maintain ties to show that he has not abandoned his US PR status during those 2 years....file US taxes, maintain property, address, banking, etc. If asked, he needs to be able to show that his 2 years outside the USA is/was temporary.

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Old Dec 13th 2010, 9:58 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Noorah101 View Post
Sort of. He still needs to maintain ties to show that he has not abandoned his US PR status during those 2 years....file US taxes, maintain property, address, banking, etc. If asked, he needs to be able to show that his 2 years outside the USA is/was temporary.

Rene
I think Ray means for Elvira herself? She would still have an address in the US.
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:03 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Does the SS pay out pensions abroad to none US citizens? Didn't think they did, so the credit would be applied to UK pension.

If you've got a good wedge of cash or assets, and under the thumb of the IRS, being a USC is better than not if either of you pop your clogs too.

Anyway, hope all is well
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:09 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
Does the SS pay out pensions abroad to none US citizens? Didn't think they did, so the credit would be applied to UK pension.
If you are a resident of the UK, they pay whether or not you are a US citizen. Scroll down to the list with "United Kingdom" in it for more info:

http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/10137.html#what
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:10 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Thanks, Guys.

Just to clarify: for me getting citizenship is not an option I want to pursue. I'm prepared to take a hit on my very modest retirement savings, ie pay whatever tax/penalty is due.

I realise my husband will have to file US taxes for a while yet (or forever if he decides to go for citizenship).

What I'm wondering is, whether as a married woman living and working in England, I would still have to file jointly with my husband in the US even if I have no US income, be it pension or otherwise. (I'm self-employed and could do without the hassle of filing taxes in two countries.)
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:18 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Sally Redux View Post
YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY Elvira I've been missing you.

Sorry no idea about the pension questions, we are totally flummoxed about our own pension situation, but just wanted to say hi and good luck with your decision.

I think you still have 2 sons in the US, will they be staying here?
Hiya - how's it going? Are you going to stick around here then?

Sons are all planning to move back in the near future. It's been an interesting 10 years is all I can say...
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:19 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Ray View Post
Just get a re-entry permit ..that will give you 2 years out to decide
and still enable you to travel ..and you can renew it
Thanks, Ray, but I've decided. Home is home, and that's where I need to be!
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:22 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Elvira View Post
I realise my husband will have to file US taxes for a while yet (or forever if he decides to go for citizenship).
Or for as long as he has retirement income from the US regardless of his citizenship.

Originally Posted by Elvira View Post
What I'm wondering is, whether as a married woman living and working in England, I would still have to file jointly with my husband in the US even if I have no US income, be it pension or otherwise. (I'm self-employed and could do without the hassle of filing taxes in two countries.)
Still have to? You don't even have to do that now.
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:34 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Giantaxe View Post
Or for as long as he has retirement income from the US regardless of his citizenship.

Still have to? You don't even have to do that now.
What do you mean? For as long as I have income in the US I have to file taxes here.
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Old Dec 13th 2010, 10:46 pm
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Default Re: Relinquishing GC and moving back home

Originally Posted by Elvira View Post
What do you mean? For as long as I have income in the US I have to file taxes here.
I mean that you don't have to file jointly with your husband even now. You could choose the "married filing separately" status.
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