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Defining legal residence?
Old 02-01-2006, 10:59 AM   #1
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Defining legal residence?

Anyone care to give me the short story on the how's and why's of declaring where you "official" residence is? Obviously if you own one house, stay there all year, and work there, you are a resident of that state...

But what if you own two homes? what if one of them is out of the country? There is no legal requirement that US citizens live in the US of course...

What if you own one home out of the country, and rent the other in the country...or vice versa?

I am interested in the general answer, and all that it might entail, but in particular was wondering how the designation of what is your "official" domicile affects schooling for under-age kids....

As we re-consider the home-schooling issue, (one of the reasons of which is so we can live on a tropical island in the winters!), thumbing our nose at the local schol authorities and telling them we are official residents of xxx country, and just own a "vacation home back here in the states...has some appeal. I really don't want to be hassled by the schools...

BUT again, not looking for a debate on homeschooling...just in general, how is it decided where you officially live?
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-01-2006, 01:08 PM   #2
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Re: Defining legal residence?

One of the best ways to determine your legal residence is to look at which house / location you have 'homesteaded'... at least in Texas you declare to the taxing authority that your house is your homestead and that is then your legal residence...

I do not know what you do if you rent....

But, another is what you put on your income tax return.. this can help prove that you want this as your legal residence...
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-01-2006, 05:49 PM   #3
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Quote:
Originally Posted by farmerEd
As we re-consider the home-schooling issue, (one of the reasons of which is so we can live on a tropical island in the winters!), thumbing our nose at the local schol authorities and telling them we are official residents of xxx country, and just own a "vacation home back here in the states...has some appeal. I really don't want to be hassled by the schools...
I'm surprised at how much more accepted the homeschool system is by the local schools. Just as long as you're not expecting to join their sports teams or get invited to the prom, they might leave you alone. Have you talked to your neighborhood's homeschooling group?

Of course, your kids might have a little trouble persuading the Tuesday morning surf lineup that they're homeschoolers...
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-01-2006, 07:15 PM   #4
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Re: Defining legal residence?

A number of years ago when I was still in the service, I was stationed in CA. I as the legal office just that question. Answer: The U.S. does not have a residency document like many European countries. You are a legal resident where you say you are. Of course it would be good to do something that would indicate you are making a place your residence. Like registering to vote and voting. Also getting a drivers license, owning property, paying state tax, The more you do the more likely you claim will be accepted if chalanged.
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-15-2006, 09:44 PM   #5
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Rustic 23 has it right. It's not whether you don't do something to not declare residence. It's what you do to declare residence. If you stay in a specific state 6 monlths or greater, if you own property and receive a homestead exemption for it, if you register to vote, if you get a driver's license, which you have to do within 30 days of arriving most anywhere..., if you register kids for school or fill out a residential state income tax tax form or try to get "in-state tuition for yourself or your progeny.
Most states require you surrender your license before getting another and you can ony get a homeowner's property tax exemption if you lived in the house you own for 6 months.
These cats ain't dumb. Most of us can't afford multiple residences, multipe state income taxes, out of state tuition, etc.
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-16-2006, 11:02 AM   #6
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Re: Defining legal residence?

I know someone who ended up paying income taxes to two states because he got too cute with the residency issues.

States who tax don't want to see you go.

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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-16-2006, 11:05 AM   #7
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Re: Defining legal residence?

MA and CA tried to do that when I moved to CA in October of 1992. I remember that set of tax returns being particularly entertaining. IIRC I had to allocate all the income I earned in each state then weed through some arcane rules where both states wanted to claim full tax on all of the income, regardless of where it was earned. I didnt end up double paying but I dont recall exactly how...
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-16-2006, 04:13 PM   #8
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Re: Defining legal residence?

I am planning to move to Tucson AZ in a couple of months. A friend of mine has a friend who will allow me to store my car on his property and will let me use his address so that I can to get an AZ driver's license, auto insurance and after 30 days my health insurance. I may stay in Tuscon for a couple of months over my friend then will begin some extensive travelling for upto 1 year first.
Will the fact that I will have a mailing address, driver's license, auto insurance
health insurance, legally establish my AZ residency even though I may be out of the country for most of the year?

MJ

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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-16-2006, 04:35 PM   #9
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ
I am planning to move to Tucson AZ in a couple of months. A friend of mine has a friend who will allow me to store my car on his property and will let me use his address so that I can to get an AZ driver's license, auto insurance and after 30 days my health insurance. I may stay in Tuscon for a couple of months over my friend then will begin some extensive travelling for upto 1 year first.
Will the fact that I will have a mailing address, driver's license, auto insurance
health insurance, legally establish my AZ residency even though I may be out of the country for most of the year?

MJ

Sounds good enough to me. DW's aunt and uncle haven't worked or lived in the US for years yet they are still NM residents due to their drivers' licenses, his admission to the NM bar, and the rental home they own there.
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-16-2006, 05:26 PM   #10
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ
I am planning to move to Tucson AZ in a couple of months. A friend of mine has a friend who will allow me to store my car on his property and will let me use his address so that I can to get an AZ driver's license, auto insurance and after 30 days my health insurance. I may stay in Tuscon for a couple of months over my friend then will begin some extensive travelling for upto 1 year first.
Will the fact that I will have a mailing address, driver's license, auto insurance
health insurance, legally establish my AZ residency even though I may be out of the country for most of the year?

MJ
The answer might depend on what New York (who may want to "keep" you) and Arizona say about residency.

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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-16-2006, 10:00 PM   #11
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Re: Defining legal residence?

MJ, I would also register to vote, and get my passport issued there if you can.
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-17-2006, 07:10 AM   #12
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
The answer might depend on what New York (who may want to "keep" you)* and Arizona say about residency.

Yeah, NY is a real PITA on this stuff, but tehy generally only bother if you have lots of income for them to tax. I would guess that OP probably has very little taxable income and so is not likely to be worth their trouble.
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-17-2006, 11:19 AM   #13
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Arizona Residency Requirements:

Objective evidence of intent to be a resident of Arizona is demonstrated by the absence of ties to the former state of residence for twelve consecutive months. Objective evidence of intent to be a resident of Arizona is further demonstrated by the following:

Date of and state in which Motor Vehicle is registered
Date of and state issuing driverís license
Employment history, including assured future permanent employment in Arizona
Transfer of major banking services to Arizona
Applications for loans, scholarships, grants-in-aid, or other such assistance
Date and state in which registered to vote
Place of prior attendance in educational institutions, including high schools, and any information held by such schools affecting domicile
Marital status and work record of registrant and spouse
Change in permanent address on all pertinent records
State in which registered with Selective Service
Military records
Ownership of real property
All other material of whatever kind or source which may have a bearing on determining domicile or resident status
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-17-2006, 11:35 AM   #14
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Re: Defining legal residence?

From the New York State web site, FAQ concerning changing your residence from New York:

http://tinyurl.com/a2fw4
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Re: Defining legal residence?
Old 02-18-2006, 09:57 AM   #15
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Re: Defining legal residence?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rustic23
MJ, I would also register to vote, and get my passport issued there if you can.
HI MJ,

You might want to check into the voter registration angle. I think thats the data used to enter you into the jury duty database. If you are planning to be on the road for extended periods that might be an issue. OTOH now you can't vote.

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