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Preparing to Move Abroad 



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Some Forum Posts:

Portugal: Banking in Portugal:

We have an issue opening a bank acct. We are in a short term residence (3 mo, next one will be 6 mo). This means we can't provide a utility bill or similar proof of current residence, even though we did get FIN numbers and my wife (an EU citizen) got a five year resident visa both using the temporary address. A tax accountant advising us said this is only to ensure that new accounts aren't set up for money laundering and the like, and suggested we just bring in a recent tax return. The address on that is a house we've now sold, but he seems to think the issue for the bank is who and not where. Will let you all know if that works.

Portugal: Visa - SEF office locations & jurisdictions:

Anybody know the limits on where you can temporarily live while applying for residency at the local SEF office? We plan to arrive in the Algarve during high tourist season and may have to take a short-term place outside the area where we really want to live. Does the address have to be a residence or rental?

Portugal: Roth IRAs - How does Portuguese IRS view these?:

(Have asked this before, but it's buried in a thread mostly consisting of speculation about tax on social security payments.) Do we pay tax to the Portuguese IRS on the earnings from Roth IRAs? Roths are funded with after-tax money and earnings (interest) is also tax-free in the US. Suppose as a US citizen/Portuguese NHR you cash out a Roth which was funded prior to your residence in Portugal. The principal is pretty certainly tax exempt, what about the earnings? (This should make it clear that it would REALLY help to get someone with substantial hands-on experience filing US citizens' returns in PT to offer to be contacted.)

Portugal: Recommendations for books to learn Portuguese?:

Make sure you use an audio source - the spoken language <-> written connection is not so easy to follow for beginning English speakers and following Spanish conventions often gets it wrong. We've been working with Duolingo for a while, but that's at a pretty low level. A very good print resource is "Portuguese-English Visual Bilingual Dictionary" - N. Tait (DK, 2016 https://www.dk.com/us/9780756662097-portugueseenglish-visual-bilingual-dictionary/) which uses photos and illustrations and can be something to peruse during down times.

Portugal: Driver's license:

The standard certificate of document authenticy in the EU is called an Apostille - US authorities know about this and provide service on the state and federal levels for a fee. In California, the Secretary of State's office does it for $20 a document. Get a hardcopy sent to you by DMV and send with a send cover letter to the address in this website: http://www.sos.ca.gov/notary/authentication/ Federal document Apostilles are handled by the US State Dept. https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/judicial/authentication-of-documents/office-of-authentications.html

Portugal: FBI background check:

We're also planning to move from the US this year and I'm curious whether the SIF required a translation and/or an Apostile for the background check, or was the watermark enough? Same questions apply to your DMV report. The US State Dept is responsible for verifying authenticity (Apostile) for federal documents and only charges $8/document for Apostile, (https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/judicial/authentication-of-documents/office-of-authentications.html) while the State of California charges $20 (for marriage licenses, birth certificates, etc.) In CA it's part of the Secretary of State's office so other states will have similar systems.


There a couple of things that people have said which confuse me here. I'm guessing that when you say "401K" you are talking about distributions, where you are drawing from a larger sum sitting in an investment account, i.e. you are only interested in accounting for this year's payout. Similarly, my wife and I have both traditional and Roth IRAs, and we will draw these down over many years. In the US, the entire amount received from traditional IRAs (contributions plus investment earnings) is taxable because all the income was excluded from taxes at the time it was paid into the accounts. On the other hand, Roth distributions are fully non-taxable, since already taxed income was used and the law was written to make this particularly lucrative. How will the Portuguese IRS view the Roth funds - will they tax the earnings at a full rate or??


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