Unmarried/pregnant partner in the USA

(17 Posts)
DandelionAndBedrock Thu 17-Aug-17 15:03:11

DP and I (both British) are engaged. Someone at work has mentioned him going on secondment for a year to one of their US offices (not sure where - think he could choose from several of the big cities). My gut instinct is this is a non-starter; our wedding is booked for 18 months' time (unlikely to happen any sooner tbh) and I want to be trying to get pregnant some time soon after that.

From what I can understand, I wouldn't be able to work if I went with DP and we were unmarried (assuming I can get a visa at all). Would I be in a worse position if I were to get pregnant out there? I've tried looking online but everything is a bit overwhelming and confusing. What about if we were to have a baby before going (but still be unmarried)?

It isn't something we have ever spoken about doing before, so it won't be the end of the world if it isn't practical to go in the next year or so. I'm sure there is someone at work who will help him to sort the logistics out but I want to get things straight in my head before we go any further.

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OutandIntoday Thu 17-Aug-17 15:09:16

Even if you were married i would imagine his visa would not allow you to work-related if this is a deal breaker then confirm the visa type now. His work would need to agree to pay your health insurance too.

Unmarried you will not get a visa - only option is the tourist 90 day esta and travel insurance.

Cavender Thu 17-Aug-17 15:36:02

I'm living in the USA with my husband. My visa would allow me to work if I chose to, however it might depend on his company's policy with regard to paying for visas.

However I agree with Out you won't get a visa unless you are married.

Health insurance would be your other big issue, particularly if you were planning to get pregnant. It's unlikely his company will add you to their health insurance scheme if you aren't married. This is a big deal, don't underestimate it's importance - health costs are extremely expensive.

Figment1234 Thu 17-Aug-17 15:48:38

If you are unmarried you can apply for a B-2 visa and reside in the US on this basis. However, you are likely to need to renew this on a regular basis. You will not be able to work on this visa.

If you are married, you will be able to work if your husband has a L-1 visa (Intra-company transfer, so very likely to be the visa). You will have an L-2 visa - but you will need to apply for work authorisation first once you have arrived in the UK.

Health insurance would be the main issue, so you should ensure that your partner's company has full insurance.

If your child is born in the US, then they will automatically be a US citizen, so they will have dual nationality.

PineappleScrunchie Thu 17-Aug-17 15:53:34

Getting married (even if just ceremony and having wedding later) would make a massive difference becuase then, as above, you'd be eligible for an L2 visa so could work (although they don't make it easy with permits etc).
There are some really good expat insurance packages which fully cover everything. We had one when I gave birth prematurely in the US (moved when 4 months pregnant).

Baby will automatically have citizenship so don't need to worry about their visa.

So not completely impossible.

KatyBerry Thu 17-Aug-17 15:54:42

And don't assume that dual nationality is a benefit! Lifetime taxation on global earnings and also if you split, certain states take a very patriarchal approach and won't let you remove a US citizen from the states without the fathers consent, which potentially leaves you stuck there unable to work

DandelionAndBedrock Thu 17-Aug-17 16:08:30

Wow, lots to process here. Thanks.

I think Katy's point is the thing that I am worried about (although I hadn't realised it would be so prescribed). DP and I are very happy but I think this is too big a commitment to not think all outcomes through, and my main concern is if things turn sour between us I will effectively be stuck. I think we'll find out some more information and then have a chat this weekend - it's certainly more positive than I thought it would be. Thanks everyone.

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laughingclouds Thu 17-Aug-17 16:16:06

Just to add - removing a child without the consent of the other parent is not just about citizenship, if you take a British child and establish residency there, you'll still need permission from either the father or the court to move to the UK with them. It's not a nice thing to think about, but it's very sensible to consider all the possible outcomes.

Plus the taxation thing isn't as bad as it sounds. The forms are a pain, but if working in the UK and earning under the limit (which is six figures) then you don't actually pay any tax to the US.

Viviene Thu 17-Aug-17 21:10:27

B2 is a tourist / business visa, you cannot reside on that, max stay is six months I think. You cannot fly back to I.e. Canada and re - enter from there either as you can land yourself in a lot of trouble.

KatyBerry Fri 18-Aug-17 08:19:15

She can't remove a British child elsewhere but she can work here and has family here. The tax thing is a pain in the arse. It's naive to assume someone will be a low earner all their life, never hold an ISA, never sell a family home in the UK, never inherit money. All manner of tax free earnings are taxed in the USA and the forms are complex and expensive to file. You have to declare every bank account you hold worldwide and the highest balance over the year. If you are a signatory on your employment bank accounts, they have to be declared and you can imagine how much they like that, so don't plan on being an accountant, solicitor, trustee, finance director etc. Many non US financial institutions will refuse to accept money from you because they don't want to give Uncle Sam the ability to dip his hand into their accounts and remove what he thinks he's due. If you have any expectations of your future children being other than a low wage earning renter all their life, it's a serious consideration.
what I don't know is how a minor dual can renounce us citizenship on becoming an adult, as I didn't find all this out from my us parent and was far too late to do anything about it

PineappleScrunchie Fri 18-Aug-17 08:27:36

I'm with you Katy it's an absolute PITA. Unless you actually plan to live in the US, citizenship is more a curse than a benefit. No idea about renouncing as a minor either but will look it up before ds becomes a teenager as it costs ~$2k in fees as an adult + you have to be up to date with tax returns etc.

Want2bSupermum Sat 19-Aug-17 03:25:19

couple of things...

Why can't you get married before you transfer? You can go to a registry office. Keep your wedding venue and fly back for a thanksgiving to marriage ceremony plus the reception.

Having a baby here is great. I've had 3 and while everyone on Mn seems to have an opinion on American healthcare very few have actually experienced it. I had preeclampsia with my first and undiagnosed gestational diabetes with my 2nd and third. The care was top notch before delivery, during labour and postpartum.

If your Oh works for a company with more than 150 employees they (the employer) were never allowed to preclude you from anything before Obamacare came in. Expect a pregnancy to cost $6-8k in copay with a high deductible plan (they will max you out).

Cantseethewoods Sat 19-Aug-17 04:33:21

I know quite a few people who have literally done the legal formalities for moving overseas purposes and then done a 'proper' wedding later.

The tax becomes a massive PITA if you end up in a low tax country like HK or the Middle East because salaries assume zero tax but you have to pay your US taxes.

Anyway if you go now you'll be back for the baby. Don't put you life on hold for Ttc as it could take years.

ExpatTrailingSpouse Sat 19-Aug-17 04:59:43

Just to add I am currently embroiled in the situation Katy describes above. Two non-us citizen parents, one US citizen child, and i am for the meantime stuck here and will potentially lose my child if stbx will not allow me to take him, and courts agree with him as i would have to leave the country before the final decree is signed by a judge. it's a shit place to be.
and yes, this would apply even with a non-us citizen child. once you establish residency (generally after about 6 months or so), everyone is under the jurisdiction of that place. the uk and the usa are signatories to the hague convention, so if you were to take a child out of the usa without the other parents permission, you could be found to have committed child abduction.

if i had realized any of this i would never have moved to the USA and become a trailing spouse.

also, don't underestimate the trailing spouse lifestyle - it can be very lonely/isolating at times, especially if you have a young child and/or know you may move again quickly. it looks fun and sometimes luxurious from the outside but it's not all that in real life.

DandelionAndBedrock Sat 19-Aug-17 12:27:10

We would be happy to do a quick legal ceremony (I'm not waiting 2 years just for the perfect venue), but for reasons I don't want to go into on here it isn't possible.

Have spoken to DP about it - the dual citizenship thing is really off putting for him (he tends to think with a financial head!), so that combined with visa problems mean I think we will say no for now. My DM was a trailing spouse for a bit, so I think I am fairly aware of the impact of that, but I agree it is a bit commitment.

We'll have a think about moving within Europe and I might be back in a few weeks with more questions! You've been really informative, thanks.

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DandelionAndBedrock Sat 19-Aug-17 12:27:34

Expat, that sounds really tough flowers

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Want2bSupermum Sat 19-Aug-17 16:27:10

expat Im so sorry you are still going through it. One of the reasons I wanted and got a prenup was to have stuff like that in agreement before we even got married. While it's not completely binding it is taken into consideration with a lot of weight given to it.

Expat life is def not the glam life others think it is. It's really tough as a new parent being totally separated from your whole support network.

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