Considerations When Taking a Job Abroad

by midlifefinance on September 16, 2014 · 0 comments

in Alternatives

The following is an article by Melissa, our guest contributor.

Jan was 45 when she tired of her chosen career track and started to long to make a difference in other people’s lives. She went to school part-time to learn how to teach English as a second language, and before her 48th birthday, she found herself living in an Asian country teaching English to non-native speakers.

Having this job reinvigorated Jan. She was once again excited to be working, and she loved living in another country and soaking up the culture. During her vacations, she traveled to other nearby countries to see more of the world.

Jan couldn’t recommend her job or the new life she was living highly enough.

If you, too, have dreamed about working abroad and making a difference in others’ lives, know that, like Jan discovered, the experience can be wonderful. However, living abroad can make life a bit more complicated as you’ll have many other details you’ll need to consider.

1. Paying taxes. If you’re living abroad, you may think you don’t need to file U.S. income tax returns, but that’s incorrect. Uncle Sam wants his cut of your money even if you didn’t earn it in the United States. However, the government does give those living and working in other countries an automatic two month extension, making the tax return due on June 15th rather than the typical April 15th.

In addition to paying income tax returns, there are other tax considerations. When living abroad, you may want to consider an offshore account because there can be tax advantages. There are many offshore banking tips online so you can do some research and see if it’s the right fit.

2. Paying bills. Not all of your bills will end when you move abroad. Jan had student loan payments from her education in ESL training to pay. Many others keep their homes and have monthly house payments to make. You’ll need to coordinate your electronic payments with your bank account to make sure that your bills back home are paid in a timely manner.

3. Health insurance. Depending on where you reside, health insurance in a foreign country may be very different than what Americans are used to. Before you go abroad, make sure you know if you’ll need to take out a policy in the United States for your health care while abroad, or if you’ll be covered by health insurance at your new job.

4. Retirement savings. Have a plan for how to continue saving for your retirement. If you move to a country where the pay will be much less than you earn in the United States, you’ll need to determine how to continue saving for your retirement or consider working abroad for a shorter duration so your retirement isn’t negatively affected.

Living abroad can be exciting and rewarding. However, there are many issues behind the scenes that you must take care of before you can relax and enjoy your new adventure.

Photo credit: flickr by Alicia Nijdam-Jones

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