Citizenship

Citizenship

Author
Discussion

timmybob

Original Poster:

455 posts

233 months

Monday 3rd December 2018
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I became a US citizen earlier this year and just wanted to do a quick post to thank those who helped answer questions when I was getting my green card. Special thanks to Matt Harper who I know has provided a wealth of information to many on here.
A UK motoring forum seems a most unlikely place to get sound US immigration advice but I am grateful for all who have shared their experiences!

Matt Harper

5,960 posts

162 months

Tuesday 4th December 2018
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timmybob said:
I became a US citizen earlier this year and just wanted to do a quick post to thank those who helped answer questions when I was getting my green card. Special thanks to Matt Harper who I know has provided a wealth of information to many on here.
A UK motoring forum seems a most unlikely place to get sound US immigration advice but I am grateful for all who have shared their experiences!
Congratulations and thank you for your gracious words.

kilty2

218 posts

132 months

Thursday 6th December 2018
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Congratulations!

I vaguely remember your postings about making the leap to come here.

My second green card is about to expire in 19 months (company visa before that), I guess I need to figure out what I will do sooner rather than later (wait times are enormous around here).

Having a green card is analogous to dating for me, obtaining citizenship is like getting married. wink

I am interested in your, and Matt's opinion about the upside and downside of citizenship vs staying on a 'green card'. I moved here by chance - job related regular visits to provide technical support, and then "boy meets girls under silvery moon". In my case I did it by marrying the love of my life (st or get off the pot) was her expression, rather than company sponsored immigration. Our circumstances have changed radically now, not relationship, but less ties here.

The USA has been very good to me/us, the house is bought and paid for, we have "lots of stuff", and life on the face of it, is pretty good. but I still have concerns about retirement (looming in the next 8 years).

Property in the UK (where I used to live 'Glasgow') is similar in price to what I have now, albeit with a smaller garden
.
What are your thoughts of Naturalizing vs staying a Legal "Alien"?

Cheers

Colin


Edited several times due to overconsumption of Goose Island..... wink

Edited by kilty2 on Thursday 6th December 01:48


Edited by kilty2 on Thursday 6th December 01:49


Edited by kilty2 on Thursday 6th December 01:52


Edited by kilty2 on Thursday 6th December 01:55

Matt Harper

5,960 posts

162 months

Thursday 6th December 2018
quotequote all
Hi Colin
I think the whole subject of US naturalization is very dependent on personal circumstances, motivations and preferences. I suspect every new citizen has their own rationale for taking the plunge.

For me, the motivation was a form of 'commitment' to the country that has given me an opportunity to improve mine and my immediate family's lifestyle and opportunities. I have no intention of relocating anywhere else - if I had, naturalization here would have been MUCH less intuitive. The main reason being that as a US citizen, you are taxed on your worldwide income, which is somewhat unattractive to almost everyone.

I only made the decision once I was as sure as I could be that our provision for employment for as long as we chose, healthcare, and retirement was secure. I definitely would have hesitated, if any of those items were shaky.

Being able to vote is also important to me. I'm not politically focused but I am exasperated by our current government, so being able to engage is a positive, as far as I'm concerned.

Finally - and this is really a quite minor point, the only way to absolutely guarantee entry to the country (as a right) is as a US citizen. Hardly likely, but even as a Permanent Resident Alien, you can be deported/denied entry, in some circumstances.

I don't know if this is in any way helpful, but it is my 2c worth.

timmybob

Original Poster:

455 posts

233 months

Monday 10th December 2018
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Hi Colin,

As Matt suggests, the reasons will vary depending on personal circumstance.
For my part, I enjoy the life my wife and I have here and have no plans to return in the foreseeable future. We should be able to comfortably retire here should we choose.
Traditionally, I have traveled a fair amount with work (approx. 1 transatlantic trip/month) so the point Matt makes about entry, whilst not a major factor, did also come into my thinking.
Voting - I initially lived in the DC area and whilst most Americans think 'Taxation without representation' is just something for your license plate in the district, it was first used by American colonists as an anti-British slogan. So they did at one time understand that voting is important wink

kilty2

218 posts

132 months

Monday 10th December 2018
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Yeah - I think I might as well go ahead and naturalize (sic).

The taxation thing (global income) still applies to a green card holder. Renouncing citizenship/green card appears to be an identical process (been on a green card for 18+ years) so the 'fee' to leave and still pay US tax for 5 years.

I'm thinking somewhere warm, to settle down - something Glasgow is not renowned for. Healthcare is really my only concern, but that could just as easily apply to the UK.

aaron_2000

4,220 posts

44 months

Thursday 31st January 2019
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Do you have a link to your old thread? I'm looking to move in the coming years.