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OT: Best places overseas to work/retire? (Mediterranean vs Argentina/Chile/Brazil/Nicaragua/Panama?)

Posted on 11/08/2012 1:34:19 PM PST by Javeth

Just curious especially to hear from anyone else who’s planning to do this, about the best countries overseas to retire and work in. My wife and I have done pretty well with our import/export business, worked hard and saved up, and are starting to make retirement plans. We’re not much enthused about giving out our hard-earned and saved money, to support the spendthrift socialist incompetence and excesses of Obama and his successors. So we’re looking to retire abroad, and if possible to even continue some of the business overseas in a lower key, part time context.

Our trading is mostly Mediterranean-based, so we were naturally thinking of a retirement home in a place like Italy, Greece, south of France, Spain or Portugal. (Don’t pay attention to all the overwrought headlines out of the liberal MSM in the US about Greece, as long as you work hard and save up, and make yourself reasonably self-sufficient, even Greece is a fine place to work and retire.) One of our sons is established in Holland right now anyway, married to a Dutch lady and speaks very good Dutch and German himself, so we’d have that family connection. (Holland, Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Finland, Denmark all have surprisingly active evangelical communities in which many Americans have gotten set up to work, learn the language and raise families, maybe even retire in though don’t know much about that- seems like the fjords in Norway for ex. would be a beautiful place for a retirement home.)

OTOH I've been hearing a lot of good things from old friends about working/retiring in places like Argentina, Panama, Chile, Nicaragua, Brazil, Costa Rica and Uruguay. I've been to Buenos Aires and other parts of Argentina as well as Chile and was pleasantly surprised. Despite the financial issues from the 90’s they’re both very pleasant places, have that welcoming “Old European” feel that you can’t find in the US anymore, plus they tend to leave you alone to do as you will there. Also the cost of living is very low, even on the beaches and seaside locations. I had a brief stopover in Uruguay and seems to have that character, too, same with Itacare and Porta de Galinhas in Brazil IIRC, though not as well-known compared to Argentina and Chile. That’s also why I guess places like Panama, Nicaragua and traditional destinations like Acapulco have been attractive, though so far haven’t visited there personally. My wife and I just haven’t really investigated the retirement or work angle itself yet, so were wondering what others have experienced.

Obviously the standard caveats apply, we’re not looking for perfect paradises and other countries have their own issues and whatever. But almost anywhere would be far better than the PC socialist, grasping incompetence of the Obama and Clinton-led US and whatever comes after. We've already been moving toward renouncing our US passports anyway because of the damage done by the outrageous global taxation scheme in the US, the only one in the world that does that to it's own citizens- the banks in our overseas trading locations want to close our accounts because they can’t deal with the intrusive US paperwork requirements. We’re not about to give another dime to this wasteful, corrupt regime.

So for us and I’m sure millions in our boat, retiring abroad or just working in a lower key environment makes sense. A bonus if the new country really is a pleasant and welcoming land to stay in, as it seems that Argentina, Chile, Panama, Nicaragua and the Mediterranean would without doubt be for us. So we’d be glad to hear from any of you making a similar move.


TOPICS: Gardening; Outdoors; Society; Travel
KEYWORDS: abroad; expat; overseas; relocate; retirement; work
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Thanks for any suggestions and details.
1 posted on 11/08/2012 1:34:25 PM PST by Javeth
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To: Javeth
I live in São Paulo, Brazil. Imagine a country where the Obamacrats are the right wing party (PSDB) while the ruling left wing party is led by a former Marxist guerrilla feminazi. We have the taxes of Sweden and the services of Nigeria.

On the plus side people are genuinely friendly (unlike superficial southern hospitality), and the women are hot.

2 posted on 11/08/2012 1:41:42 PM PST by Clemenza ("History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil governm)
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To: Clemenza

Did you get deported to Brazil as punishment?


3 posted on 11/08/2012 1:45:37 PM PST by exnavy (The time is upon us, fish or cut bait, may God guide your heart.)
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To: Javeth

Malta might be a possibility It has a stable republican government and is centrally located. English is widely spoken, and the Muslim population is small.


4 posted on 11/08/2012 1:46:59 PM PST by Fiji Hill (Deo Vindice!)
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To: Javeth
None are gun friendly. I looked into Belize. Nice place but.....very unfriendly toward guns. If you are from the gun culture and enjoy the shooting sports, look into this closely before committing.
5 posted on 11/08/2012 1:47:16 PM PST by mosaicwolf (Strength and Honor)
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To: Javeth

My advice to you is move fast.


6 posted on 11/08/2012 1:47:52 PM PST by exnavy (The time is upon us, fish or cut bait, may God guide your heart.)
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To: Javeth

One of the OPM investigators that comes in for law checks is planning to retire in Cebu City, Philippines. He says the cost of living is very cheap and can get property there for around $100,000. he says there is a magazine called International Living that covers all of this stuff.


7 posted on 11/08/2012 1:48:11 PM PST by Jean2
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To: exnavy

Work and wife brought me here. Draw your own conclusions.


8 posted on 11/08/2012 1:48:28 PM PST by Clemenza ("History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil governm)
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To: Clemenza
I live in São Paulo, Brazil.
Any place would look good after Malverne.
9 posted on 11/08/2012 1:50:56 PM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: Javeth

I expected if Baraq won, the necessary discussion on FR will be “bolt or revolt”.


10 posted on 11/08/2012 1:53:22 PM PST by nascarnation (Baraq's bankruptcy: 2016)
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To: Jean2

My sis-in-law is from Pampanga, Philippines and my brother married her in Cebu. It’s an expat’s dream. Extremely cheap and it’s like Miami but gosh, the property taxes are low. Lots of Americans there. That’s where the Phil call center for Paypal, AT&T and other multinatl corps are located.


11 posted on 11/08/2012 1:53:22 PM PST by max americana (Make the world a better place by punching a liberal in the face)
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To: Clemenza

My best friend from HS now lives in Sao Paulo! The most conservative guy ever and yet he chose to live there. He was reading Ayn Rand in Jr. High, if that tells you anything. So I couldn’t see him selling everything off and moving to socialist Club Med, but he did. I guess when you have enough money to retire at 40, anywhere is probably a nice place. He abandoned the US in 2009 post Obama and has no regrets. Chatting online on election night all he could do was tell me “Told ya so”. He now has several hobby businesses, employs locals and runs a cash based/underground mini-empire, but mainly lives off his previous investments and sale of business here in the states. Pays zero taxes, but claims makes up for them in friendly bribes to friendly officials. The the Brazil way. He enjoys the freedom, the lifestyle, and yes, the women.

So, based on my very limited knowledge, Brazil would be great if you already have oodles of money.


12 posted on 11/08/2012 1:54:30 PM PST by Will_Zurmacht
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To: Clemenza
I've visited there, wouldn't want to live there.

That said, you may be far better off than I.

13 posted on 11/08/2012 1:54:38 PM PST by exnavy (Got ammo, Godspeed!)
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bfl


14 posted on 11/08/2012 1:55:15 PM PST by doubled ( never in the field of human con tricks has so much been owed by so many to so little effect - Steyn)
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To: Javeth
Santiago and Valparaiso are delightful places. Chileans are for the most part industrious + hard-working. They speak rapid Spanish but are sympathetic to gingos who make the effort to habla. The Chilean economy is on fire as they have a capitalist system unspoiled (so far) by the looters and moochers.
15 posted on 11/08/2012 1:55:25 PM PST by corkoman (Release the Palin!)
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To: Javeth

Invest only where there is the rule of law.


16 posted on 11/08/2012 1:56:40 PM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (In the game of life, there are no betting limits)
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To: Clemenza

“On the plus side people are genuinely friendly (unlike superficial southern hospitality), and the women are hot.”

Ha, true, can’t help but notice that even if pretending not to around the Missus. I only had a couple brief stays in Brazil decades ago when the business was barely off the ground, among my first trips outside the USA. Even then, and probably affected by my status then as an unmarried guy, I wondered if the gorgeousness of the women compared to the United States and most any other country could make up for all the flip-sides in Brazil. I’d heard about so many expats working there these days that I thought the flip-sides might have picked up, too, but it’s one of the places I admittedly know far less about. I guess people manage somehow.

Thanks for the details.


17 posted on 11/08/2012 2:04:52 PM PST by Javeth
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To: Javeth
I went through this during the Clintoon administration. Just save yourself a bunch of frustration. There is still no place like here. I found out quickly that I won't go anywhere my guns aren't welcome. I almost decided on Ecuador and in less than 2 years, they went commie. I would go to Australia, but they are expensive and they have already lost their guns. It's just an intellectual exercise that ends up back in the US.

The questions to be pondering are "When do you join a militia?" "At what point do you start firing on your neighbors?" "When do you say enough is enough?"

The Founders found a point they would not budge. Where is that point? Lincoln drew a line in the sand and the south gladly crossed it. No one wants to see this type of situation come upon the nation, but how far will we go? It would be easier to go to Belize, but how long before SHTF there? I would be in Alaska if I could, but I would lose my wife in that move.

18 posted on 11/08/2012 2:05:33 PM PST by chuckles
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

I’ve been doing business in Argentina for more that 10 years, and have developed some good friendships there.

It IS a great place, and the people are wonderful. But, I think it’s far too unstable to count on.

I’ve been doing some looking at Panama. It seems to be a pretty interesting place.


19 posted on 11/08/2012 2:06:20 PM PST by SomeCallMeTim ( The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would hire them)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

I’ve been doing business in Argentina for more that 10 years, and have developed some good friendships there.

It IS a great place, and the people are wonderful. But, I think it’s far too unstable to count on.

I’ve been doing some looking at Panama. It seems to be a pretty interesting place.


20 posted on 11/08/2012 2:07:34 PM PST by SomeCallMeTim ( The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would hire them)
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To: nascarnation

[the necessary discussion on FR will be “bolt or revolt”.]

There might be a third way, which is to do some of both. I now have an Internet business,so I could theoretically live anywhere and still be involved here politically.


21 posted on 11/08/2012 2:07:40 PM PST by DaxtonBrown (http://www.futurnamics.com/reid.php)
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To: Javeth

If I had your choices and family on the continent I would have a home in finland, visit and shoot in Germany, and have a smmer place on an island in Greece.

It would be difficult to get into Finland, I imagine, and I suspect they are clannish.


22 posted on 11/08/2012 2:08:25 PM PST by Chickensoup
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To: Clemenza
Sounds like 2012 Amerikkka ... women here vote with their vagina's ... you elect to stay there for your cock ...

It was YOUR rationalle ...

23 posted on 11/08/2012 2:09:10 PM PST by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: AlexW

Ping


24 posted on 11/08/2012 2:10:02 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: Chickensoup

I like Slovakia, small country, smack dab in the middle of Europe, fairly Conservative. And of course pretty much hate Communists from their time in the former Communist Czechoslovakia.


25 posted on 11/08/2012 2:10:29 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: Will_Zurmacht
Cost of living is similar to Manhattan, although many consumer goods (clothing, electronics, and cars) are expensive thanks to high tariffs and transportation costs.

I'm surprised that your friend didn't choose Buzios or Fernando Noronha. It's better to live near the beach if you ate independently wealthy.

26 posted on 11/08/2012 2:13:27 PM PST by Clemenza ("History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil governm)
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To: knarf

That is the funniest thing I’ve heard on an otherwise miserable day, but sadly true as well.


27 posted on 11/08/2012 2:15:17 PM PST by Clemenza ("History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil governm)
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To: Javeth
I spend a lot of time in SE Asia (liked the area since my senior trip...), lived in the Philippines and Thailand about half the year until the kids got old enough for school. Will probably go back nearly full time at some point.

My suggestion would be this....decide on a couple places and then go and live there for at least 3-6 months before you actually decide to leave permanently. There is so much of a difference between here and anyplace else you have to actually experience it nobody can adequately explain it to you

28 posted on 11/08/2012 2:15:51 PM PST by montanajoe
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To: SomeCallMeTim

S. America and Mexico once had quite an attraction but the drug and kidnapping business has made these areas unattractive to me. I took a summer session at the Tech in Monterrey and visited Mexico a dozen times but quit going in the 1990s. It’s just too dangerous.
I’m a retired oil company sales rep and have found the Missouri Ozarks very much to my liking. Low taxes, deer, turkey, great fishing, four seasons (altho summer can be hot and humid.) Lake of the Ozarks was built in 1930 and has attracted a large community of retirees like me.
Check www.funlake.com.


29 posted on 11/08/2012 2:17:58 PM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (In the game of life, there are no betting limits)
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To: corkoman

Ah, yes, reminds me of the time I was in Patagonia.../wcfields


30 posted on 11/08/2012 2:21:49 PM PST by JohnnyP
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To: corkoman

Great to hear you got that impression about Chile, too. I think sometimes that country might be the ideal place to work, reside, invest and retire in. Seems to have a well-balanced combination of a hard-working, capitalist culture with friendly people, great climate, that old-fashioned European character and unbeatable natural beauty. I was stationed for a brief while in Malaga many years ago, and remember enough basic Spanish that I could probably build upon it.

I’ve visited Santiago before though not Valparaiso, sounds like something worth looking into. That’s in Central-North Chile, correct?


31 posted on 11/08/2012 2:22:00 PM PST by Javeth
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To: Javeth

I’m a long time lurker but decided to log in when I saw this post, mainly because of the danger it poses to both the OP and any others who might be thinking the same thing.

Without commenting on your reasons for wanting to retire abroad, you should realize that for tax purposes, it doesn’t matter. You are an American citizen. It doesn’t matter where you are living, you are still subject to US taxation, regardless of whether a tax treaty is in place with your chosen country or not.

For retirement accounts, such as 401K and IRA or other securities, it’s all considered ordinary taxable income the moment you start drawing on it. Income you earn from business you are doing in that country might have some tax exclusions for you under the Foreign Earned Income code. You are still required to file a 1040 and failure to do so can result in a $10,000 fine.

The other option is to renounce your citizenship, but this poses its own financial problems. At the time of such a renouncement, you would be required to add up the value of all your assets (retirement, checking, savings accounts, homes, cars, artwork, etc.) and pay a lump tax on the value of them all. It’s called an Exit Tax and it was enacted to discourage the kind of thing you seem to be wanting to do.

Hope this helps and I strongly advise speaking to both a lawyer and a competent accountant before making any major decisions.


32 posted on 11/08/2012 2:28:36 PM PST by DCMacNerd
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To: Javeth

Bump for later


33 posted on 11/08/2012 2:29:46 PM PST by leapfrog0202 ("the American presidency is not supposed to be a journey of personal discovery" Sarah Palin)
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To: DaxtonBrown

Great plan.
I think you’ll see the best and brightest in the medical field will set up offshore clinics in the Caribbean.
So wealthy Americans can get beyond Obamacare, with a short plane ride from Florida.
That’s an area I’m watching closely.


34 posted on 11/08/2012 2:29:48 PM PST by nascarnation (Baraq's bankruptcy: 2016)
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To: Javeth

later


35 posted on 11/08/2012 2:31:16 PM PST by wjcsux ("In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." - George Orwell)
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To: Javeth

I’d consider Ireland. My favorite place is northern Italy, near Switzerland. Plenty of small town living. Food can’t be beat.


36 posted on 11/08/2012 2:35:49 PM PST by Cboldt
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To: Javeth

I’m researching Panama. There are several programs for retirees, people who are economically self-supporting, and a new program for friendly countries- they need English-speaking people to work! That last program is quick, and less red-tape.


37 posted on 11/08/2012 2:39:09 PM PST by austingirl
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To: DCMacNerd

Good information. So one CAN leave after paying an exit tax - it might be a small price to pay for a nice climate, low cost of living and to be free of Obamaphone lady.


38 posted on 11/08/2012 2:43:29 PM PST by austingirl
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

Yeah, that’s why I haven’t visited Mexico itself yet even though I’ve been a few other places in the Americas, every time I read the headlines about the cartels the place makes me nervous. OTOH I’ve always gotten the impression that Chile and Argentinian Patagonia for ex. are socially and culturally (and of coures geographically) a world away from Mexico. The Chileans especially seem to have been among the friendliest and happiest people I met, hard-working but also able to take nice vacations, relax and enjoy other’s company. I also found this appealing balance of qualities in the Germans to my surprise, though of course Germany’s nowhere near Chile as far as the natural beauty of the countryside and beaches.

As far as Mexico goes, I have known a few people who’ve worked or retired there, and in at least a brief aside in a casual conversation a few months ago, seemed like they loved it wherever they’d settled in, spoke enough Spanish to get along nicely and had great friendships with both the locals and fellow expats. I should have asked more about the details then, but I’m guessing they must have been in one of the nice communities that are maybe more concentrated in the Yucatan or Acapulco. I know precious little about Mexico other than it’s divvied up into a variety of different states that don’t particularly like or get along with each other, seems they have very different senses of identity and maybe different cultures too. Maybe the work/retirement destinations are just a world apart in terms of safety and quality compared to the cartel-controlled regions?


39 posted on 11/08/2012 2:43:49 PM PST by Javeth
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To: Javeth
While working in Guanajuanto Mexico I was really bored on weekends so I would drive around to nearby towns.

I discovered San Miguel de Allende, a beautiful town in the Eastern part of the State of Guanajuato.

I never heard of it before I went there, but found out it has the largest community of ex-pat Americans in the world.

About 13,000 Americans year around and 20,000 in Winter.

Since it is in the Central Highlands plateau it never goes below 62 degrees or above 82 degrees.

That's where I am going in 15 years.

40 posted on 11/08/2012 2:43:55 PM PST by Mikey_1962 (Obama: The Affirmative Action President.)
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To: nascarnation

That’s an idea I have been promoting for along time. American-trained physicians and nurses will set up practices for things like knee and hips replacements, cardiac bypass and catheterization services and do a CASH ONLY business. It could be promoted as resort vacation/ healthcare enterprise. It is a way around less expensive procedures and the medical practitioners will not have to tell the US government what they are doing (because they will be greasing the palm of government officials).


41 posted on 11/08/2012 2:54:14 PM PST by veritas2002
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To: veritas2002

These folks will need peons with skills not generally available in the host countries. That’s one of the things I’m looking at closely.


42 posted on 11/08/2012 2:57:34 PM PST by nascarnation (Baraq's bankruptcy: 2016)
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To: SomeCallMeTim

Put me down for Panama. High % of folks speak English, the $USD is the currency. Very good infrastructure by latin American standards. Panama City is almost on par with San Diego or Miami. Flights to the USA are just a couple hours.


43 posted on 11/08/2012 2:58:08 PM PST by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: nascarnation

Yep, there are already “medical tourism clinics” in the Bahamas.


44 posted on 11/08/2012 3:00:56 PM PST by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: Mikey_1962

Wow, you weren’t kidding about San Miguel de Allende.
http://blog.exploreandgomexico.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/San-Miguel-de-Allende.jpg
http://www.gtoexperience.mx/images/stories/destinos/san-miguel-allende/loop/loop01-sanmiguel.jpg
http://www.gtoexperience.mx/images/stories/destinos/san-miguel-allende/loop/loop01-sanmiguel.jpg

The place is gorgeous, we’ll be putting that one on our list. Thanks for the tip.


45 posted on 11/08/2012 3:01:08 PM PST by Javeth
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To: Javeth

Oops, that third picture from San Miguel:
http://www.hoteleseconomicosmexico.com/fotos/san-miguel-allende/galeria/big/san-miguel-allende-01.jpg
and another
http://www.cozumelparks.com.mx/wp-content/uploads/2008/04/san-miguel-allende.jpg


46 posted on 11/08/2012 3:05:21 PM PST by Javeth
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To: Travis McGee

Yeah that seemed to be common consensus about Panama when I heard about some years ago. I was surprised to hear it at first, but the infrastructure and surroundings seem to be surprisingly high-quality, plus friendly people and great beaches. Are most people going to Panama City or some of the smaller coastal towns?


47 posted on 11/08/2012 3:10:45 PM PST by Javeth
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To: austingirl

Yes, you can always renounce your citizenship and live somewhere else, but (like everything) there are some crucial caveats you should consider.

To renounce your citizenship, you must find a country which will grant you either permanent status visa or citizenship itself. Also, you will lose all US protections if you are in a place which later destabilizes for some reason (you can’t go to the US embassy if some revolution breaks out, for example).

The Exit Tax itself can be considerable. Basically, think of everything you own right this instant. Then imagine selling it all as of the day before you expatriate. The tax is calculated on that Market to Market sum, above around $600,000 in value. This could significantly impact your retirement accounts, for example.

When it was proposed, it was called the Billionaire’s Amendment, but it applies to FAR more than just billionaires. The tax rate is calculated according to which tax bracket you fall into with that sum added to your existing ordinary income.


48 posted on 11/08/2012 3:16:15 PM PST by DCMacNerd
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To: Javeth

It’s great. I got there on March 17th and they had a huge Feliz San Patricio sign in the city square.

I thought no way. That’s when I started walking around.

i saw a guy with a Michigan ball cap on so I said in Spanish that I received my degree there. He answered in perfect Mid-western English that he went there too.

My jaw dropped.

Very pretty place.


49 posted on 11/08/2012 3:17:43 PM PST by Mikey_1962 (Obama: The Affirmative Action President.)
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To: DCMacNerd

Thanks for the tips, yeah the global taxation is in fact one of the reasons we’re moving in this direction, because all the earnings we acquire from our import-export work in the Mediterranean and elsewhere still gets taxed at outrageous levels in the US. The US is the only country that does this, and the system is so burdensome and punishment-oriented that even the most honest taxpayers get shafted by it. The banks overseas have to comply with the reporting demands and pestering from the US, and it’s so costly to them that some will close the accounts of Americans based there. We’d also heard of the exit tax and have no illusions about it, it’s just that in light of the outrages from the US worldwide taxation system, we’re starting to think it’s worth it to renounce our passports and be done with it.

It’s interesting that even the liberal Democrats we work with overseas absolutely hate the US global taxation scheme, and it’s one of the things that Romney stupidly ignored in his campaign- he would’ve gotten 90% or more of the vote from returning expats, exporters and anyone else working in international trade, if he’d bothered to put more emphasis on improving this universally hated, unfair and preposterous global taxation. That (along with the legal thievery of US divorce laws) is one of those rare things when you can really find almost universal consensus across ideology lines, since it’s so plainly ignorant of the working realities of American expats, so atrociously disproportionate and so damaging to otherwise well-meaning, hard-working and productive people. We’re not even using services in the US when we work aboard, not using any of the roads, foodstuff inspection, libraries, police or fire services, we’re working in a different country. And most of us aren’t billionaires with Swiss bank accounts, we’re hard-working and prosperous but still usually upper-middle class or so. What justification is there then, to tax us so viciously, take such a punishing stance and all but force us to lose our foreign accounts in overseas banks? It’s obvious common sense that global taxation of US citizens is an outrage, which is why no other country does it.


50 posted on 11/08/2012 3:26:26 PM PST by Javeth
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