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Financial issues Facing Those Trying to Move Abroad

moving abroad
If you’re planning on moving abroad, you may encounter some of these financial challenges.

Moving abroad can be a thrilling life change full of adventure and excitement, but it can also bring with it a plethora of challenges – especially financial. If you’re planning on moving abroad, whether for work, school, or to try something new, you’re not alone. Around nine million Americans live abroad, and thousands more join them each year.

With all of the things you have to juggle as you plan to move abroad, it’s important to make sure you take time to get your finances in order. Due to American and foreign rules which are designed to limit or regulate international financial activity, moving abroad can have a significant impact on your finances. In particular, these laws and rules can affect your investments, banking, and retirement plans.

In order to help you prepare for your move, here are five of the most common financial challenges that affect U.S. citizens who move abroad.

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British Expats: What to Do Before You Say ‘I Do’

british expats
Options for Getting Your Green Card and Remaining in the U.S.

To paraphrase Truman Capote, love knows no geography.

If you’re a British expat reading this article, then you are likely hoping to marry your American sweetheart and remain in the United States. If your goal is to go through the immigration process and get your green card, i.e. obtain permanent residence, you have three main options:

  1. K-1 fiancé(e) visa
  2. I-130 Petition for Alien Relative filed in the U.S. (either with or without a K-3 nonimmigrant visa)
  3. I-130 Petition filed in London

The information that follows, though helpful, should not be construed as legal advice tailored to the specifics of your legal situation. If you require more specific legal advice, you should contact a U.S. immigration lawyer.

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Taxes Abroad: Claiming Foreign Taxes

taxes abroad
A Primer on How to Be Tax-Smart with Your Foreign Income

Do you own stocks, bonds, or mutual funds? If so, you may well have some foreign holdings such as BMW (German), or BP (British), or Nestle (Swiss). This means you have paid foreign taxes on the income you earned. Would you like to avoid being taxed on that income a second time? You may be able to accomplish this goal if you claim a credit or deduction on your U.S. tax return. Don’t count on your tax preparer or preparation software doing this optimally for you.

The information below applies to almost all U.S. investors since most hold foreign stocks in their U.S. mutual funds. Read on to learn how to be more tax-efficient with your foreign income.

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UK vs U.S. Healthcare: What Ex-pats (and others) Need to Know

healthcare in U.S. for UK Ex-pats
Entering a Vastly Different Healthcare System Requires Forethought and Planning

We had our own room in Cedars Sinai hospital – coming from the UK it seemed like a 5-star hotel. My newborn son peered up at me. His mother lay exhausted after a 20-hour labor and it suddenly occurred to me that our hospital stay was about to extend past 24 hours. But would the insurance cover it? In a panic, I tried to contact the insurance company. This was my first wake up call to the difference between the British and US healthcare systems and how, as an ex-pat from the UK, I might be in for a rude awakening.

My next was a year later after a $15,000 surgery to fix a deviated septum. I could no longer breathe through my nose. I had been referred to the specialist by my primary doctor but afterward, the insurance company refused to pay. What?! It turned out I needed two referrals for this particular surgery. That small print was hidden in the coverage brochure the size of the bible. The insurance company also insisted they knew that it was for cosmetic reasons. (This is Hollywood after all.) Thank goodness I had refused the doctor’s generous but insulting offer of a free nose job.

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WellAcre Global Wealth Advisors is a Registered Investment Adviser. Advisory services are only offered to clients or prospective clients where WellAcre Global Wealth Advisors and its representatives are properly licensed or exempt from licensure.  This website is solely for informational purposes.  Past performance is no guarantee of future returns. Investing involves risk and possible loss of principal capital. No advice may be rendered by WellAcre Global Wealth Advisors unless a client service agreement is in place.