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Coming back to the UK to have my baby

(26 Posts)
user1485456605 Thu 26-Jan-17 18:59:27

Hi everyone! Nice to meet you all.
I'm nearly 16 weeks pregnant and living in the USA with my American husband.

I was wondering if anyone knew what are the pro's and con's of having my baby back home in the UK. I have great health insurance here, but I'm really missing my home and my family I only have my husband here with me and i'm feeling very alone and isolated and just want to be with my family and familiar surroundings. This will be our first child so as you can imagine I'm really scared!

I'm wondering, if I come home would there be any issues with getting into to see a GP/midwife (I've been out of the UK for a year now with my greencard) but I still have residency in the UK.

Anyone know if my baby is born out of the USA if it's going to be hard to get he/she back in? My husband is a citizen and I have a greencard. Does this mean the baby is just a UK citizen?

Anyone been through this and can give me some insight?

Thank you so much in advance!

SavoyCabbage Thu 26-Jan-17 19:07:00

You can only use the NHS for an emergency or if you intend to stay here. So you would need to pay. I had to go to the GP when I was back in the UK as my dd's epipen had expired and payed.

If your child is born here she will be British. If she is born out of the UK but you were born I the U.K. You can apply for citizenship for her. However she wouldn't be able to pass this citizenship on to any dc she had out of the uk. They would have to be born in Britain to be British.

I think I understand how you feel, not wanting to have your baby away from your family. We were going to have a third baby but didn't because I just couldn't imagine having a baby abroad.

WelliesAndPyjamas Thu 26-Jan-17 19:10:03

Look up the current rules about using the NHS if you have been living abroad. There used to be a time limit on it, this might have got tightened up even further now.

user1485456605 Thu 26-Jan-17 19:28:10

Thank you so much for replying ladies.

If I was to come home for like 6 months would I still have to pay? I've lived abroad before for years and come home and just registered back with the GP again with no problems, but obviously not being pregnant... Not sure if that changes anything?

IWantATardis Thu 26-Jan-17 20:19:31

Agree you need to check the current rules about entitlement to use the NHS.

When I went to my first hospital appointment when pregnant with DS3 I had to fill in a form with details of my residency in the UK in the previous however many years.

Can't remember the details of the questions and timescales covered though.

WelliesAndPyjamas Thu 26-Jan-17 20:21:16

Sounds like temporary residence, so you would need to check based on your current status, time spent out of UK, etc
The NHS website will have all the information you need.
Congratulations on your pregnancy!

WelliesAndPyjamas Thu 26-Jan-17 20:23:39

This has been an overexploited use of NHS resources, has received a lot of publicity, and so is far more difficult to get away with these days. Not worth the risk if you do not meet the criteria.

FuckOffDailyMailQuitQuotingMN Thu 26-Jan-17 20:26:31

If you have the baby here in the UK you go to the American Embassy and register the American birth abroad. You have to take your baby with you. I can't remember the time limit on this will have a look. You can then apply for both a British Passport and an American passport for your child as long as your American husband is here to attend the American embassy appointments with you.

So all 3 of you will need to go and register the birth in the Embassy.

You can birth your child in either country and still have dual citizenship.

sphinxster Thu 26-Jan-17 20:29:51

Will your medical,insurance cover childbirth in the uk?

We moved back to the uk in November when I was about 7 months pregnant. I registered with a gp and saw a midwife within two weeks. We've repatriated and are staying but I haven't had to prove it or fill out a form.

I've been desperate to come home since ds was a baby... He was in NICU and we had to pay up front for him to get necessary treatments. It was horrific. It made me value what the uk has to offer in healthcare, education, waste disposal, accountability, etc etc... I want to raise my children in a country with those ethics even if it fails sometimes.

The cons are: the service is stretched and I can't just pop in to see my OB whenever I have a question (but the midwives are always quick to respond anyway). I won't have an en suit bathroom and a waiter bringing me my meals. I have to take a lot of stuff to the hospital as its not provided.... It's not even a problem.

NerrSnerr Thu 26-Jan-17 20:49:34

I have a family member who has done this with both of her births. She comes back, rents somewhere for 6 months and registers and pretends she's here to stay but had no intention to. Personally I think it's a huge piss take- the NHS is not free it is paid for by taxes that you're clearly not paying if living abroad.

BertieBotts Thu 26-Jan-17 21:10:40

I believe that residency does entitle you to use the NHS but as others have said it is morally dodgy.

There is a lot of scaremongering about US childbirth stuff but in fact if you break down the statistics, a lot of the bad outcomes are actually related to poorer women with less access to healthcare, they don't apply to women who have full insurance. Yes, you have to pay a copay. But in the balance of everything, it's not so bad.

The breastfeeding support is much better in the US despite higher levels of formula marketing. The c-section rate is higher, but you are more likely to get pain relief that you want when you want it, rather than having to wait. The stillbirth rate in the US is lower. There is no gas and air in the US but since it's your first, you wouldn't necessarily miss this anyway.

You have excellent after birth support in the US and are usually in a private room or sharing with one other mother, not on a ward with six or more beds.

Depending on where you are in the US you can find practitioners who are more interested in natural birth. The "typical" US birth can be more medicalised. But if it's important to you to avoid this, that's possible.

Could your family come and visit around the time of the birth? I feel like just coming back for a short time would have its own problems. You'd still have to deal with things alone eventually. I feel like trying to build a network of support where you want to stay would be a lot more productive. I do understand the homesickness and the feeling of wanting to be close to your family. I wonder if you could look for an antenatal group locally, a local forum, a pregnancy or mums' group which appeals to one of your interests (fitness, crafting, natural living, whatever) or even look for a meet up for British women/people living near you? I mean, are you feeling wobbly about staying in the US full stop, or do you think this might be a pregnancy hormone related short lived thing?

expatinscotland Thu 26-Jan-17 21:17:28

It's not hard to get the two passports, but for the US one all three of you will need to appear in person. You can do this at your nearest US Embassy or Consulate. I'm glad we use a Consulate because they give you an appointment and you're in and out in no time. But having the baby here, it doesn't sound very feasible.

Mustbeinsane1984 Thu 26-Jan-17 21:27:03

Bless you I know how you feel! I gave birth to my first child abroad and I was rather apprehensive to say the least. I was posted overseas for my work so was a bit of a strange situation as I still paid UK tax and NI and entitled to NHS care. I could hardly speak a word of the language at the time and just sort of had to get on with it. Because I was not in the system of the country I was in and it was classed as personal choice that I didn't my give up my job and go back to the UK I had to pay for all bloods, urine and scans privately which cost around €1500. I did get away with not paying a bill for the birth as I received no medication what so ever. €500-€600 for epidural. It was really terrible not having family and friends around at the hospital after the birth but the time alone spent with my husband and baby was amazing. Most family and friends visited after we had settled back at home. I know it's fearful but if you have ok insurance in the US and as Bertie mentions can enrol in some classes you will feel more at ease. It really did make me grow a back bone and made me a stronger person. I'm that crazy I'm doing it again! But this time in the system of the new country I live in and a little bit more of the lingo! Wishing you luck flowers

user1485456605 Thu 26-Jan-17 22:33:25

Ladies! Thank you so much for your advice. It's really helped. And just to say. I've lived the in UK 25 years full time before I started years of traveling and paid my taxes and national insurance since I was 16/18. I'm not planning to come home to take advantage of the NHS or anything like that I simply feel alone here and I'm dying to see familiar faces. It's fine though I'll just stay here and try and deal with things. Maybe pop back after the babies born.

I'm going to look into groups and build a support network here! Wish me luck ladies! And thank you again, your advice has meant wonders. xxx

MouseLove Thu 26-Jan-17 22:55:27

On a more positive note if you have awesome health insurance in America your birth experience will probably be top notch care. My American friends all gave birth in beautiful spotless hospitals with their own private rooms to stay in for days if not weeks and received lovely care. Take advantage!! Our Nhs is unfortunately not like that, whilst some hospitals are fantastic they don't reach private care standard. The stories I've heard made me consider private care here in the uk. They really got looked after. X

Munchkin1412 Fri 27-Jan-17 06:00:23

With insurance in the US I suspect you will have much better care than on the NHS. Honestly I would stay where you are to have the baby and then come back to visit afterwards. An NHS hospital is not the place to have a baby if you have the choice of essentially having a private hospital birth (in my limited but horrific experience anyway!)

Sparklyuggs Fri 27-Jan-17 07:23:43

I'm in a slightly similar situation that I live abroad but pay my taxes in the UK and retain my residency. I was apprehensive about having the baby abroad without my mum around, no family and friends to support. I looked into it and I decided that it wasn't fair on my husband, and I would then have the issue of flying back with a newborn.

One thing which helped was I looking into a doula, there are postnatal ones who offer a package where they pop in for 2 hrs every other day for a couple of weeks and help with washing, breastfeeding, crying, moral support etc. It sounds a bit like what I would have had at home from my aunts and cousins and it makes me feel less alone.

Depending where you are your hospital may have an expat mum's group?

WelliesAndPyjamas Fri 27-Jan-17 07:24:13

Sadly, the number of years you spent paying tax and NI don't count if you emigrate, it isn't like an accumulation of credit.

inniu Fri 27-Jan-17 07:32:39

It is not as simple as suggested above to register a child born to a green card holder and a US citizen outside the US as a US citizen. The number of years spent by the US citizen in the US before the birth is relevant.
I have recent experience of this system

expatinscotland Fri 27-Jan-17 07:58:01

'It is not as simple as suggested above to register a child born to a green card holder and a US citizen outside the US as a US citizen. The number of years spent by the US citizen in the US before the birth is relevant.
I have recent experience of this system'

For most people there, though, it is, since it's 4 years following the age of 14.

Paying taxes and NI is what we do to support infrastructure and stable government, it is not a personal insurance policy or savings account.

toomuchtimereadingthreads2016 Fri 27-Jan-17 08:13:36

Not exactly the same case but we are living in a European country, I am British and my husband is from a South American country. We went to register our baby in the normal way and were asked to choose which nationality we would give her, but it couldn't be the country of birth, had to be one of the parents nationalities. We chose British, and were given the birth certificate extra copy in "international format". We used this to apply for her british passport with no problems, through the website. Had to give parents and grandparents details, places of birth, dates of marriage etc. Was a bit of a PITA but essentially straight forward xxx

FuckOffDailyMailQuitQuotingMN Fri 27-Jan-17 10:31:41

*'It is not as simple as suggested above to register a child born to a green card holder and a US citizen outside the US as a US citizen. The number of years spent by the US citizen in the US before the birth is relevant.
I have recent experience of this system*

Can you elaborate what problem you had?

I have registered 3 US births abroad and haven't lived in the USA for many many years. My DH doesn't have USA citizenship. I've never experienced any problem, it was all very straightforward except that we had to have a lot of information / documents and information about our parents and grandparents.

inniu Fri 27-Jan-17 16:12:23

For a child born abroad to one US citizen and one alien parent to be registered as a US citizen born abroad the US citizen parent has to prove physical presence in the US for 5 years prior to the birth of the child including at least 2 years after the age of 14.

I was a few weeks short of the 2 years after the age of 14 so I had to have my children go through the naturalisation process.

The OP hasn't given her DHs background so we don't know if he meets that test.

BertieBotts Fri 27-Jan-17 16:49:21

Just seen on facebook this book is free on kindle today. You might like it, OP.

If you need UK link just change .com to

FuckOffDailyMailQuitQuotingMN Fri 27-Jan-17 16:52:16

I see. Thank you for clarifying. It's weird but I guess going to high school and then University in the USA must've sorted that problem out for me.

Good luck, OP!

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