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How are Americans managing residency requirements?


by @opt | 5yr  | 11 comments

Thanks to the forum and many hoursโ€™ worth of reading, I have a number of puzzle pieces, but am having some difficulty putting them all together as a cohesive plan.

This was evolving into an epic post (of heroes and dragons), but I think the crux of the thing is: everything basically requires a physical/street address somewhere in the US, correct? How are you doing this now, given current conditions/requirements?

For business formation, for a business checking account, and even for a personal account, itโ€™s all about the physical address. For example, I believe Iโ€™ve read here that Charles Schwab (often recommended) may no longer be accepting addresses from mailing services such as Earth Class Mail and Traveling Mailbox, street-based or not. Correct? And thatโ€™s simply for a personal accountโ€“business stuff is always more complicated.

Assuming a โ€œfriends and family planโ€ is not an option, what to do?

One thing I think would work is to rent a cheap room or apartment in some state and use that as a base, but thatโ€™s an added cost/pain, and I donโ€™t believe thatโ€™s what most people are doing.

This also has me wondering if it isnโ€™t better to simply find a cheap domestic location and give up on the international plan. (But that sux.)

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@nomadicme | 5yr

Perhaps it is true that banks will start to request re-verification of mailing addresses annually but to date, they are not doing so. I have had one instance where a bank asked me to update my physical address and so I did. I used an address where I live with a friend. However the rest of the banks solely require you to have a physical address when you open an account (which will be verified). Thereafter you can be nomadic and leave your address as is. Update the mailing address to your โ€œmailing serviceโ€ address and off you go.

To mitigate the risk while traveling open half a dozen checking accounts and debit cards. These days almost all online bank checking accounts are free and have low or no minimum deposit requirements. This way if you lose one or two you have others to fall back on (they are already open and ready to use). Only issue is to be sure you ACH or deposit money annually so they donโ€™t go dormant.

Happy trails

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@adam_nubern | 5yr

I was just forwarded to this discussion, so sorry for being late in the game. Has anyone tried using a Registered Agent to solve this conundrum? Registered agents are historically more used for annual business filings and such. Perhaps you could find a cool RA in your area that allows you to use the address for banking matters to. Assuming you opt in for e-statements, the RA shouldnโ€™t receive anything. As a courtesy you would need to figure out how to limit the inevitable junk mail.

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@nicknovitski | 5yr

Court-tested advocacy from a Texas-based support group for full-time rv-ers gives you the option to have โ€œdomicileโ€ (ie full legal residence) at a Mail-Receiving Agent address in Texas. This is according to someone I spoke to (for free) from Loring & Associates, who have a specialty in affidavits of domicile for Texas, usually for RVers, but also for indefinite-term international travelers.

I hope theyโ€™re right, because Iโ€™m going to be testing this theory in a few weeks with a Traveling Mailbox address. :grimacing:

Iโ€™m a little sad I didnโ€™t read johnny thejenโ€™s post on the subject before changing all my addresses, because it sounds like Texas Home Base will actually give you a document (I believe an affidavit) you can use at the DMV! Traveling Mailbox definitely doesnโ€™t do that.

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@ellen1 | 5yr

This is super helpful and thanks for posting. A document for DMV would be fantastic. Good luck with your experiment and do post an update, I have got to get out of Illinois tax situation!

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@wanderingdev | 5yr

sounds like someone needs to start a nomad house in texas and rent out โ€˜roomsโ€™ to nomads for them to receive their mail

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@ellen1 | 5yr

Due to the Patriot Act of 2003, you absolutely need a physical address to bank, to vote, to file taxes. You absolutely can not use a service such as Traveling Mailbox, Earth Class, etc., street-based or not, in lieu of a physical address.

I faced this issue a few months back and, as you, found it incredibly confusing and confounding. Many people responded to inquiries about the matter with stories of their using a mail service in the pastโ€”or still using one they have had for years.

But, you will also find a new and growing number of folks having problemsโ€”instances of folks whose accounts were frozen suddenly and without warning if they are currently using a digital mailbox (street-based or not); other people who canโ€™t seem to open a new account using digital mailbox.

In fact, you might also have noticed that while Traveling Mailbox used to promote their viability for this precise use case, they actually no longer do. The last I spoke with them, they didnโ€™t outright admit it (likely because the reality is not great for their business model) but they also no longer offered to refund any fees if the bank didnโ€™t accept them as a physical address, which they had in the past.

So, why is this just now starting to emerge? And why is there so much conflicting information? Itโ€™s because banks are having to start cracking this year as the โ€œgrandfatherโ€ period of them not having to confirm that all account holders have an actual physical addresses is coming to a close.

So, there are still folks who use services like Traveling Mailbox for their physical address and think all is fine and dandy. And there are still banks where you might be able to change your address without having to provide proof of residency. But itโ€™s risky businessโ€”a gamble that your bank wonโ€™t just freeze your accounts at some point in the near future.

Hereโ€™s the good newsโ€”you absolutely can use a friendโ€™s or family memberโ€™s address as your primary/physical/residential address. I double checked this as the friend whose address I use is a stateโ€™s attorney so he has to be absolutely legal in everything.

Hereโ€™s what I did:

  1. Secure the required documentation for getting a new driverโ€™s license at the new address. (This is not easy, in fact it is a horrible pit of despair but it can be done).

  2. Get both a Driverโ€™s License and State ID with the new address so you have two forms of ID.

  3. Use said IDs as proof of your new physical address.

  4. After registering your physical address, add a โ€œmailing addressโ€ to as many accounts as you can to reduce the burden on your friends and streamline getting your physical mail. Note: some accounts donโ€™t offer a mailing address and thereโ€™s no getting around that.

  5. Answer carefully whenever registering international travel on your accounts as banks will cancel your account if they think/decide you are out of the country for longer than they feel comfortableโ€”which is completely random and makes virtually no sense. I had two banks cancel my account because I couldnโ€™t give them a precise date of return to the US.

Hope this helps.

Donโ€™t give up international travel just because the US has regressed into a feudal society wherein you must be a landowner or have a landowner vouch for you in order to be a participating member of society! In fact, use it as a good reason to get out and explore how amazing it can be to live in countries that are actually free.

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@opt | 5yr

:wink:

That said, this is an informative response, and if one reads the boards and blogs, itโ€™s apparent that the word isnโ€™t quite out yet that the situation has changed. Either some people are still squeaking through using mailbox services (perhaps to be identified later if/when banks check) or signed up in the past while it was still feasible. Or neither.

You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.

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@ellen1 | 5yr

Ugh, totally read that wrong! I thought you were saying you assumed a friends & family plan was not an optionโ€ฆ but I see now you were saying that it isnโ€™t an option for you.

I gots nothing for you then. I tried to do the no friends and family option to get residency in Texas so I could avoid Illinois stupid-high taxes (made higher by residing in Chicagoโ€ฆ) but was completely unable to accomplish without a fair amount of skating along the edge.

I considered the renting out a smallish place option until I realized that Iโ€™d end up having to then add insurance and all that. So, just tossing out the thought that youโ€™re adding some additional complexity by renting.

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@opt | 5yr

No worries, it seems like thatโ€™s what many, if not most, people are doing.

I donโ€™t want to go the path of renting a small place either, but done cheaply it would still result in a huge federal tax savings. Assuming the banks donโ€™t decide youโ€™re not home often enough, as youโ€™ve suggested. (Is there no way to win?)

For others using family addresses, e-billing would help reduce the amount of personal mail received. But with a past business address Iโ€™m accustomed to seeing heaps of junk mail from companies that purchase lists of new business owners. I canโ€™t imagine inflicting that on someone else! (Also, if one becomes โ€œsuspectโ€ in the eyes of the powers-that-be, what effect could that have on those โ€œharboringโ€โ€ฆ?)

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@gigigriffis | 5yr

My boyfriend uses a mail service and he hasnโ€™t had any problems, so not sure if thatโ€™s actually an issue. I use my best friendโ€™s address and just make sure everything is paperless, so she very rarely ever gets a piece of mail. I understand not having access to family, but you donโ€™t have one friend whoโ€™d let you use his or her address? Again, you can make it so that the person rarely/never even gets paper mail.

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@wanderingdev | 5yr

this is what Iโ€™m going to do when my mom goes nomad next year (she gets my very limited mail now). I have a friend and Iโ€™m just going to pay her like $10 a month (cheaper than a service and she gets a little extra cash as a single mom) to take pics of anything that comes in for me. but I get maybe 1-2 pieces of actual mail a month. the rest is just adverts.

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Read and participate in 14,101 discussions on Nomad List

Suggested topics

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Are there any tax issues I have to be aware of?

 

in Germany by @clara | 3d 2 days ago | 0 comments

Hi everybody. I live and work in Germany and want to go to Canary Islands for 6 months to work from there. I'm going to keep my current job, just change the "home" in the home office part of things. Are there any tax issues I have to be aware of? I was reading about becoming a residence after 183 days, thus having to pay taxes there plus my employer having to register there. Does anybody know how it works exactly? Thanks a lot!

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International number & internet?

 

by @leobassam | 3d 2 days ago | 0 comments

Has anyone figured out a way to get setup with a virtual number and internet connection anywhere you go?

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Most Walkable Neighborhood / City In The World ?


by @dannybooboo | 10d 10 days ago | 0 comments

I love living in walkable areas of town. I can always find them. But now I'm wondering where in the world are the most walkable places? I'm imagining walk streets (no cars), zoning allowing both business and residential, parks or beaches ,etc.

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Chiang Mai accommodation


in Chiang Mai, Thailand by @bertieb | 15d 14 days ago | 0 comments

Can anyone recommend a good accommodation website for Chiang Mai?

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Is anyone travelling right now?


by @viktor | 18d 18 days ago | 3 comments

Winter is coming and Iโ€™m feeling the ache of travelling after being stuck in the same place since the Pandemic started. Wondering if anyone is travelling right now? If so, where are you currently located and how is the situation where you are?

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Anyone up to explore some city which is kinda virus safe?


in Bangkok, Thailand by @germanrobert | 18d 18 days ago | 2 comments

Hello World!

I'm an experienced Digital Nomad and after being in Lockdown in Bangkok and Germany for one year I would like to team up with someone to visit a new place. Or just doing some exchange about what destinations would be interesting currently.

I take the virus seriously and still I think we can still be able to take our life in our own hands. So I'm aiming for cities/countries which are not in full lockdown, are not too complicated about immigration (I'm looking at you Thailand, your state quarantine costs like 1k USD and is basically a prison) and is also rather safe regarding the virus. I tend to stick for rather big cities and like culture. I'm not a beach or nature person. I'm pretty flexible about the money topic.

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Holร  ! What's the internet / wifi situation in Sayulita ?


in Puerto Escondido, Mexico by @ambroisedebret | 19d 19 days ago | 0 comments

After being told it's unworkable in Puerto Escondido, looking for alternatives :)

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How to find accomodation in Las Palmas, Canary Islands


in Las Palmas, Spain by @philippg | 27d 27 days ago | 2 comments

Hi, we are trying to find a house to rent for 2-3 persons near Las Palmas for 4-5 months at the moment and it seems to be almost impossible except through Airbnb which is super expensive. Any advises or local contacts?

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Ukraine Residency


in Ukraine by @reticle | 1mo 1 month ago | 1 comment

I have a slightly above average US income which I can work remotely from paired with a $1000 a month income stream and more than enough to purchase a middle end Flat in Ukraine. Does anyone with knowledge of this process have any advice to acquire a reliable way to stay in the country?

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Can Americans with EU Passports Travel to EU during COVID-19?


in France by @fqlx | 8mo 7 months ago | 1 comment

I'm a dual citizen of America and France with my resident based in the America. Can I travel to the EU using my French passport?

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Any Estonia e-residency company viritual office provider that accepts cryptocurrency?


in Estonia by @64tankman | 2yr 1 year ago | 0 comments

I previously use Profia. Contract is ending and I want to have someone who accepts crypto payment instead.

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What's the best CRM/system for managing remote work opportunities?


by @panoramica | 2yr 1 year ago | 3 comments

Iโ€™m currently doing some work through Upwork, but itโ€™s sporadic and Iโ€™m keen to get more active on other platforms like Freelancer, Toptal, CodeMentor, Fiverr etc

Currently Iโ€™m managing leads in a Google sheet. Basically itโ€™s just a list of projects I pitched for, how much I bid, what I did differently from the last pitch/bid, how much time went by before I got a offered a job etc.

Iโ€™m not actively following up anybody, and Iโ€™ve in fact โ€˜lostโ€™ a few jobs where the client was keen, but then disappeared without a trace. I guess I need to keep in touch with those people to ensure that they remain focussed on our agreementโ€ฆ

Iโ€™m also keen to take on more small projects concurrently, without dropping the ball on any of them.

Iโ€™ve done a quick Google and turned up a few names including Salesforce, Zoho, Nutshell, HighRise, Base, Nimble, etc etc. But testing out all these products isnโ€™t all that appealing, so I thought Iโ€™d ask here first :slight_smile:

Ideally Iโ€™d like something that integrates with remote job boards in some way.

Feature list

Iโ€™ve done some research and currently have this feature list:

Proposal building & tracking

  • Compile proposals from snippets - technologies, past projects
  • Quickly pull together a realistic/client friendly quote
  • Test and measure different approaches
  • Beat proposal deadlines while maintaining quality
  • Fine tune pitch material to bid more quickly and win more work โ€“ templates
  • Store history about past projects involving common needs and technological solutions
  • Learn which proposal content is working, and which is not

Lead generation and client management (CRM)

  • store info about regular clients
  • track remote projects which Iโ€™ve pitched for
  • Remote Job Board integration
  • search multiple job sites for keywords
  • track projects across multiple remote platforms โ€“ API integration / message alert/response

Project Management & Scheduling

  • Break projects down into granular tasks
  • Gantt chart to visualise overlapping jobs
  • Calendar to schedule daily work, deadlines, R&D
  • follow up, plan and schedule future work now, rather than once current work has dried up
  • offline reminders via a dedicated Android app
  • time tracking โ€“ to get an idea of true cost, to flag issues to client
  • BitBucket integration

Billing

  • Integration with Xero
  • tracking status of payments, actual payment date vs expected payment clearance date

Marketing

  • Get repeat business
  • Build Word Of Mouth
  • Proactive lead generation
  • Publish proposals as case studies

Cheers,
Dan

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Estonia E-Residency & CFC


in Estonia by @edusantorini | 2yr 2 years ago | 7 comments

So, Iโ€™ve been looking into e-residency and moving my business to Estonia the past few weeks.
Iโ€™m still a tax resident in Germany and therefore fear Iโ€™ll be suspect to CFC laws. I somehow canโ€™t find any reliable info on this and I donโ€™t feel like reading through the whole law, so just wondering if anyone knows how CFC laws in EU countries come into practice. What taxes do I need to pay exactly? As soon as I cash out (dividends), as far as I can see I need to pay 20% income tax in Estonia. Then what? Of course, I would need to pay income tax in Germany. What taxes do I need to pay besides these?
And if I keep the money in Estonia/reinvest it, am I right that I wouldnโ€™t need to pay any taxes at all? Only for the money I cash out of Estonia/the business?

Iโ€™m by the way not doing this to evade taxes, taxes are secondary. I primarily simply want to move my business activities out of Germany + the all-digital concept and the bookkeeping service of agencies like leapIN are interesting.

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Iโ€™m a U.S. accountant who works with Americans who live abroad, ask me anything!

 

by @olwagner | 3yr 2 years ago | 100 comments

Hi everyone,

If you have a U.S. tax question or would like some U.S. tax insight on your business/structure, ask away!

I have been preparing tax returns for US citizens abroad since 2012. I can answer any question in US tax with an international flavor. I operate 1040abroad.com and I have maintained a blog at taxsamurai.com

I look forward to answering all your questions. And if you are in Ho Chi Minh City in December, letโ€™s meet !!!

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Malta- Ordinary Residency


in Malta by @lukasbergner | 3yr 3 years ago | 0 comments

With 2018 right around the corner, the first thing I am going to do is find a new home base. The single most important factor on which I decided where I want to go was tax advantages. Right now, after reading several posts on this forum, itโ€™s probably going to be Malta. I am from the EU which should make the process pretty easy.

I read a few posts on here which answered a lot of questions, but what I am looking for is mainly confirmation on that what I am planning to do works like I think it will.

1. Is a postal address sufficient for gaining and maintaining residency?
I already know that you are supposed to spend more time in Malta than in any other country to gain tax residency. However Iโ€™d rather rent an Airbnb for those months instead of a renting out an apartment for the whole year. Ideally Iโ€™d get a post box to have a permanent mailing address. Would that work?

2. What exactly is foreign sourced income?
So as I understood it, you donโ€™t pay taxes on foreign sourced income which is NOT remitted to a Maltese bank account. My main income comes from websites so the income is sourced from E-Commerce stores, none of them in any form related to Malta. Iโ€™d still work on this while in Malta, although the income is pretty much passive. I am aware that itโ€™s beneficial to pay at least some tax to avoid complications.

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Working remotely in New Zealand and getting permanent residency?


in New Zealand by @mmorris | 4yr 4 years ago | 4 comments

Soโ€ฆ Trump is Prez. The world looks to the US as a role model. He doesnโ€™t think Climate Change is real. Weโ€™re [email protected]#$ed.

Canadian Citizen here. Was considering Costa Rica for a long term solution, but they wonโ€™t deal with the impact as well. We were always fond of NZ and my parents spend at least 3 months of the year there along with knowing some citizens.

Questions:

  1. How can we gain a Permanent Residency Visa? It seems the Skilled Migrant Category makes the most sense as I am a Systems Analyst (by NAFTA requirments) and my wife could probably qualify as a Nutritionist/Naturopath/Counsellor. Anyone have experience with this path?
  2. I currently work for a US non-profit remotely. Does NZ allow for this? do I need a job in NZ to be considered for the Skilled Migrant Category? Can I work for the US org while my Permanent Residency is processed?

Thanks!

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How to best set up your taxes, residency and and business as a digital nomad?

 

by @theglobalcitizen | 5yr 4 years ago | 60 comments

The purpose of this post is to discuss the benefits, downsides, and challenges of setting up an international business.

Comment with what you want to know, or with what knowledge you can offer others based on your experience.

  • Do you want to set up an offshore company but donโ€™t know
    where to start?
  • Do you have questions with setting up legal entities or bank accounts?
  • Do you have questions with regards to paying taxes and residency.

Before becoming a DN I worked in Dubai as a corporate service provider. I helped 100s of international entrepreneurs to set up their companies, engage in tax planning and obtaining residency. Most of them in Dubai, but also in other jurisdictions like Panama, Hong Kong & Seychelles.

Share your biggest struggles or tips!

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Anyone here who doesn't officially have a residency?


by @absokim | 5yr 4 years ago | 16 comments

Hi everyone,

Is it illegal to not have a residency?

Iโ€™m from Sweden and make all my money online. Now Iโ€™m going to become a non-resident for tax purposes.

My thinking is that I want to live in Australia for a few months of the year and then live in 2 other places a year. Basicallyโ€ฆ Iโ€™m looking to escape tax and not have an official residency anywhere. At the same time, Iโ€™m gonna take great care avoiding to stay long enough in each place so Iโ€™m not obliged to pay tax.

The thing isโ€ฆ On the visa into Australia I have to type in residency, and when I donโ€™t legally have one, what the heck am I suppose to type in?

Could I just type in my old address in Sweden? (Or maybe my parentโ€™s address). Or would that be considered illegal seeing I donโ€™t live there but more importantly I donโ€™t have residency there anymore (though I will of course always remain a citizen)?

Curious to hear your thoughts about this and if maybe someone is already doing this and living without an official residency.

(The ultimate goal with all of this is of course to avoid giving away half of my hard-earned money every month while being able to live a more comfortable life in 3 places a year)

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