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Old 08-22-2016, 05:36 AM   #1
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Retiring and Full timing

I will be retiring soon and full timing. I currently live in California but as I will not be residing there I was thinking of chooseing another state to call home for tax pupose primarily. Does anyone have experience in this area? Thank you for your time.
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Old 08-22-2016, 06:00 AM   #2
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Lulu8,

Best wishes in your retirement. Best jobs we've ever had!

For your list, Pennsylvania has no state income tax on retirement benefits. There are a few other states with similar situations.

Depending on your situation, you may also want to check health insurance market place conditions as you narrow down your list.

Roy and Marie
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Old 08-22-2016, 06:18 AM   #3
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Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington and Wyoming have no personal income tax at the present time. New Hampshire and Tennessee tax income from dividends and investments only.

Texas is very popular for full-timers because (1) year-round camping; (2) Escapees has a facility there where you can establish a legal domicile. Domicile is important not only for income tax purposes, but also because it affects your insurance rates, where you register to vote, where you get your driver's license and vehicle/trailer license plates, and where you may be called for jury duty. Even full-timers must do their civic duty, and "I'm out of town" only works to postpone, not completely avoid, jury duty.

And you can't establish a domicile at a post office box— unless your domicile is a place where there is no door-to-door mail delivery. You see, in order to get a post office box— either from the USPS or from a private mailbox company— you have to list a street address as your domicile on the application to get the box. And if the USPS wishes, they can verify it by sending a registered letter to the listed domicile street address. If there isn't a building there, and a live person to sign for the letter, the USPS could prosecute for mail fraud— it says so in the fine print on the application. Escapees provides not only a valid street address for your domicile (and a campsite whenever you visit your new domicile), but also a person on staff who can sign for registered letters and parcels and forward them on to you or hold them for pickup if you're going to be in the area— and unlike PO Boxes, you can get packages from FedEx and UPS there as well.
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:33 AM   #4
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Thank you very much for the reply. Since I am vacating my home can you tell me what would constitute a home base. Can I just get a PO box and change my drivers license?
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:41 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Lulu8 View Post
Thank you very much for the reply. Since I am vacating my home can you tell me what would constitute a home base. Can I just get a PO box and change my drivers license?

Welcome, Escapees RV Club has extensive free information about full timing and legal requirements. Most states seem to require a physical address to meet residency requirements.
https://escapees.com
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:59 AM   #6
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Thank you very much for the reply. Since I am vacating my home can you tell me what would constitute a home base. Can I just get a PO box and change my drivers license?
Short answer, no, you can't. Please re-read the third paragraph of my previous post.

Legally you must have a physical address somewhere, that determines where you officially live. No one lives at a post office box and so a PO Box cannot be a domicile. That is why companies like Escapees exist, to take care of all of those pesky details for full-timers.

Sure, some full-timers lie about it, like applying for the PO Box before moving out of their stick-and-brick house and then just never telling the Postal Service or the IRS or the DMV or the Clerk of Court or the insurance company that they've moved out. But that's illegal, and I'd never recommend on a public forum that you do an illegal thing. So if you decide to do that, don't tell any of us.

Retired full-timers with adult kids sometimes use their children's address as their domicile, and there's nothing morally or legally wrong with doing that. And if your kids still love you, they may even forward your important mail to you instead of throwing it in the trash.
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Old 08-23-2016, 07:27 AM   #7
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I am concerned, Lulu8, that you sound in-process without yet having thoroughly researched the substance of full-timing life.

You need to look into all of the aspects involved with full timing, and not rely solely on these Forums for your information.

It is eminently doable, but be careful not to get yourself in a pickle by heading out there with inadequate planning.


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Old 08-23-2016, 08:10 AM   #8
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In my case, I never once considered full-timing in an RV. My health problems dictate having doctors that I can see regularly, and I wouldn't want to be forced to look for new doctors/dentists/etc. wherever I happened to be, every time I needed one. There is something to be said for consistent medical care.

But before I bought my Airstream— and before my health problems reared their ugly heads— my plan was to full-time on a boat, cruising America's inland waterways. Yachting full-timers have exactly the same concerns as RVing full-timers, and I spent weeks looking at the various legal requirements for full-timing as well as ways to comply and/or circumvent them. Though at the time I was willing to jump through all of the legal hoops necessary to set myself up as a bona fide full-timer, today I'm not.

Full-timing is doable, but Maggie is absolutely right. Advice from us here on the Forums is no substitute for doing your own research and finding what will work best for you.

Legal requirements for full-timing only get more stringent as time goes on, partly because the Government seems unable to make the distinction between "person of no fixed abode (but with a moving abode)" and "homeless" or "vagrant." The Government wants to make sure everyone has a home.
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Old 08-23-2016, 12:05 PM   #9
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Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington and Wyoming have no personal income tax at the present time. New Hampshire and Tennessee tax income from dividends and investments only.

Texas is very popular for full-timers because (1) year-round camping; (2) Escapees has a facility there where you can establish a legal domicile. Domicile is important not only for income tax purposes, but also because it affects your insurance rates, where you register to vote, where you get your driver's license and vehicle/trailer license plates, and where you may be called for jury duty. Even full-timers must do their civic duty, and "I'm out of town" only works to postpone, not completely avoid, jury duty.
I don't know how you do it. You are just a plethora of information. I may not know what it is you are preaching, but seeing these threads, you seem to always have your $hit together.
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Old 08-23-2016, 12:08 PM   #10
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Be VERY careful. If you're not ACTUALLY moving / relocating, CA is VERY aggressive in going after tax cheats. I've been told that CA public employees, as a condition of being hired, must sign an agreement that they will continue to pay CA income tax on their pension when they retire; even if they actually do move out of state (I don't know how far back this goes). More and more states are going after people they believe are trying to evade taxes.
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Old 08-23-2016, 12:20 PM   #11
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Check on all possible taxes that you may incur in another state before you move. Sales taxes, vehicle registration fees, property taxes, gasoline taxes, and etc may offset perceived savings from moving to a state with low or no state taxes.
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Old 08-23-2016, 12:37 PM   #12
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I agree with Protag that the idea of fulltiming is not being recognized or fully accepted yet by certain entities.

Seems they realize it's becoming quite popular to do and not just among retirees. Because of that certain groups realize they are missing out on revenue from folks that wander the country.

It may get a little worse before it gets better. In the end a physical address will not be a mandatory box to be checked off and home can be wherever you park it.
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Old 08-23-2016, 12:57 PM   #13
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I, too, just retired in California and am traveling full-time

After two years of planning, we have sold everything we own, moved into the Airstream in April and started traveling full-time in July when I retired.

We are in our 5th week on the road.

Because of not being at Medicare age for a few years and not being military, we are forced to remain 'officially' a San Diego county resident so we can get our health insurance through the COBRA system of my ex-employer.

That will last 18 months and then, staying a California resident, I can add another 18 months of health insurance through the Cal-COBRA system.

After that we will consider our options about which state offers the best tax advantage.

If you are interested, we blogged the preparation for our full-time Airstreaming launch at www.LivingInBeauty.net. Since we hit the road a few weeks ago, we have switched to "lessons learned" and places visited.

Hope to see you on the road!
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Old 08-23-2016, 01:22 PM   #14
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Full timed for four years. A South Dakota mailing service worked great! No state income tax and very reasonable vehicle registration fees.
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