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Possibility of semi-retirement in California

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Possibility of semi-retirement in California

Postby pueblopedro » Wed 9 Jun 2004 10:40 GMT

Hi my wife and I (both still just about in our fifties!), are currently "retired", and living in southern Spain. We have one or two friends in Santa Barbara and LA, and my wife has long nursed the idea of finally retiring to somewhere like the Santa Ynez Valley to take up her love of horses.

We became familiar with the area during the 90's when our son attended UCSB, and as such, made as many visits as we could, making further friends and contacts each time.

They are mainly American friends, and the problem is, they don't tend to know a great deal about immigration or residency, and short of paying a lawyer, there doesn't seem to be that many ways to get the 'low down'

I say we are retired, in fact until our miserably small pensions kick in, we 'get by' buying and renovating the odd property, which we then live in for a while, until we sell on at a small profit, when we move to the next project.

What are the main problems against moving to the States in terms of Visas, Green cards, sufficient funding, health care, etc., etc.?

Sorry if that seems to be a pretty broad spectrum of requests, but it would be a great help in our decision making process to actually hear it from the very people who have done it. - Thanks and if anyone wants to know about moving to Spain - either email me, or preferably post your questions in the Spain Country Experts forum.
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Postby Graeme » Wed 9 Jun 2004 19:40 GMT

I don't have a good answer for you other than to check the USA immigration sites. I think you need to consider the health ramifications on a move to US especially if your income is limited. One of the biggest costs is health care, I know the county system is pretty good and is free, but you can wait for ever and in some areas it is almost inaccessible. Immigrating to the US is getting harder, even with the North American Free Trade agreement (NAFTA) which was supposed to make things easier and open the borders it is still very difficult to move to the States from Canada.
If I can find the Us immigration service web site I'll post it.
:)
Graeme
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Postby pueblopedro » Wed 9 Jun 2004 21:45 GMT

Hi - thanks for that. I have checked out the US embassy site and it's not madly helpful. I heard that the US was planning a Green card for retirees, so may be we need to explore that - thanks anyway. I'm happy in Spain at the moment, so there is no rush.
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Postby Graeme » Thu 10 Jun 2004 23:33 GMT

Try this link for information: http://www.rapidimmigration.com/usa/1_e ... _info.html
the actual US government agency is the USCIS at:
http://uscis.gov/graphics/
browse both these sites and you should be able to find the information you need. Hope this helps.
:)
Graeme
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Postby pueblopedro » Fri 11 Jun 2004 20:03 GMT

Yes MMmmmm as I said - pretty daunting - I think I'll stay in Europe! - what I can't understand is - Northern Ireland (part of the UK) citizens are eligible for the Green card lottery scheme - but not other UK citizens??? - so "Scot Blair" won't be able to escape there then! :?
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