UK Foreign Office Warns On Pitfalls Of Moving Abroad

By Editorial 20 September, 2013

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has issued advice for British nationals considering moving abroad, and warned that a "high number" of expats have required assistance with financial issues due to bad property deals, expensive medical bills, pension complications or other misfortunes. The FCO says that there are "many" cases where persons have faced heavy fines, financial ruin, or found themselves on the wrong side of the law.

The department's advice comes in the form of "Top 10 Tips." Those planning to move are told to research their destination; to familiarize themselves with local regulations and customs; not to rush into buying abroad, and to seek independent legal advice; to take out health insurance; to consider long-term financial requirements; to research tax liabilities as they relate to the new location and the UK; to remain aware of costs and exchange rates; to inform the Social Security Office, HM Revenue & Customs, the Department of Work & Pensions, and their local doctor; and to attempt to integrate by learning the local language.

The advice also reminds potential expats that those who leave the UK permanently will need health insurance even if they remain within the European Economic Area: permanent expats are not entitled to treatment with the National Health Service (NHS) or via a European Health Insurance Card, which is designed for temporary travelers in Europe requiring emergency treatment. The FCO advises a visit to the NHS moving abroad page.

The FCO maintains a "Know Before You Go" website, as part of a campaign in partnership with 600 travel industry partners. The FCO also has pages on retiring and the state pension abroad, and a list of English-speaking lawyers abroad. The department has also created a video containing advice to help British nationals plan a move abroad, and advice can be received from the FCO Twitter service or via email.

Tags: Finance | Insurance | Expats | Health Insurance | Investment | Pensions | Personal Finance | Property Investment | Welfare | Invest | Lifestyle | Investment | Lifestyle | Pensions |


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