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myshipp

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  1. Thank you, @Kirk W. I am on the wait list to be called back (high call volume) and I’m sure I can get it straightened out. I didn’t think you were calling me deceitful, but there was some mention of “faking” domicile on here, so I wanted to be clear that isn’t my intention. I also don’t mean to imply that Escapees is doing anything shady. If so, they’re the worst at hiding it in the world, since they say right on their website what they do! Sumter County clearly knows about their service and are okay with it. I wrote my original post on Sunday, when the Escapee offices were closed so I couldn’t call them. I had received my welcome email on Friday, and was a bit put out that it didn’t mention the Florida address at all, just the Texas one. And I’m still not sure what the “letter of intent” is—that was something I asked in my email, but they didn’t answer in their reply. Anyway, I noticed Escapees had a forum, so I thought that I could find others who used their service and had the same experience.
  2. Thank you for all the helpful replies, and questions that made me think and research a bit more. It will be easy enough to have mail sent to the Florida address, and just eat the nominal fee they charge for automatically forwarding it to Texas. My complaint is mainly that on their website, Escapees says that when you sign up for their service, they will provide documents (a Welcome Letter and a Letter of Acknowledgment) that you can use to get your driver’s license, etc., and they didn’t. I’ve emailed them about it twice, but their replies haven’t answered any of my direct questions, so I suspect they are form letters. Since this is the Escapees forum, I mistakenly thought it would be a good place to ask about that. Though this wasn’t the purpose of this thread, for my own sake I want to clarify that I am not trying to be deceptive or fake anything. Here are a few details about us, and why I think we need to change our domicile to a different state: By default, we are Alaska residents. I’d lived there all my life until October, and my husband since 2000. We have Alaska driver’s licenses, and that’s where our vehicles are registered and insured. We paid them property taxes up through October 2019, which is when when we sold our house. In many ways, it doesn’t matter if we’re Alaskans for now. There is no state income tax, and we can renew our licenses and registration online. We don’t have to get our vehicle inspected on a regular basis. But their are a few realities that make it impractical to be tied to such a remote state in the future. Sometime before October of this year, we’ll need Real IDs, which we have to get in person. We have no plans or desire to return to Alaska, especially just to visit the DMV. Health insurance for Alaskans is pretty much useless outside of the region. I checked into some of the “alternative” health plans for nomads, and was told they can’t currently accommodate Alaskans. Our truck is getting old, and we’ll eventually need to replace it. We aren’t going to return to Alaska to register a new vehicle. If I had my way, I wouldn’t have to choose a state at all. The whole point of selling our house and leaving our state was so we could travel around at our leisure, without having to be at a certain place at a certain time. But as you all know, that isn’t how our country works. There’s no such thing as general US driver’s licenses, voter’s registration, or insurance. We must be tied to a state. So we have to pick one. We picked Florida because we like it, so we are most likely to return to it regularly (although I can’t honestly say when or how often). If we ever got tired of traveling, we’d probably settle down in Florida. And yes, we’d definitely enjoy the Disney Discounts:) It does seem to have better-than-usual options for health insurance, but that is not really a deciding factor—any state would be better than Alaska in that regard! Again, I have no interest in being deceptive about my living arrangements or faking anything. I’m simply trying to figure out how to live out my dream of traveling around the country indefinitely, while still being able to vote, drive a legally registered/insured vehicle, and not die of a curable disease because I can’t afford health care out-of-pocket. Thanks for the help and suggestions.
  3. It is very true that I have no idea how all this residency and domicile stuff works. I guess that’s what I get for living in the same place all my life! Here is something specific that confuses me: According to the official Florida government websites, you cannot register your vehicles, register to vote, or have insurance in Florida without a Florida drivers license or ID. So the first thing I would have to do is get a drivers license. Okay, that’s fine, except to get a drivers license, I need (sorry if this font is wonky, I copy and pasted from their website): ———— 3. Proof of Residential Address Customers may not use their current driver license or ID card as proof of residential address. Customers must submit TWO different documents with their residential address (printouts or faxes of these documents are acceptable). Residential address documents include, but are not limited to: Deed, mortgage, monthly mortgage statement, mortgage payment booklet or residential rental/lease agreement; Florida voter registration card; Florida vehicle registration or title (print a duplicate registration at www.GoRenew.com); Utility bill; A utility hook up or work order dated within 60 days prior to the application; Automobile payment booklet; Selective service card; Medical or health card with address listed; Current homeowner insurance policy or bill; Current automobile insurance policy or bill; Educational institution transcript forms for the current school year; Unexpired professional license issued by a government agency in the U.S.; W-2 form or 1099 form; Form DS2019, Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) status; A letter from a homeless shelter, transitional service provider or a half-way house verifying they receive mail for the customer. The letter must be accompanied by a Certification of Address form; Mail from financial institutions including checking, savings or investment account statements; Mail from federal, state, county or city government agencies; or FDLE registration form completed by local sheriff’s department. Customers who do not have any of the above documents in their name may provide two proofs of residential address from a parent, step-parent, legal guardian or other person with whom they reside and a Certification of Address form. ———— Obviously, many of those won’t apply to us as nomads—we don’t own a home or have jobs in Florida. The voter registration, vehicle registration, and health care don’t make sense, since those all require a Florida drivers license or ID to get! I suppose Escapees:Home could write a letter to go with a “Certification of Address”? Should I just have a couple of bank statements sent to the Florida address, even though they’ll immediately get forwarded to Texas? I probably could file a Declaration of Domicile, as mentioned in the “Florida, a Place to Call Home” article for one of the documents, even though the above DMV list doesn’t mention it. Exactly, that’s the problem! If I were getting all my official mail sent to the Florida address, I could use it as proof of residency. But Escapees says not to do that, to have everything sent to Texas. ETA: Thanks for the replies so far! I’m just still having a hard time wrapping my head around having to prove I live somewhere when I don’t actually live anywhere.
  4. Hi! My husband and I sold our home in Alaska a few months ago and have been traveling in our R-pod ever since. We have no plans to return to Alaska, and want to establish residency in a state that has better insurance options and such. We got a Florida address with Escapees, and we are spending the next week in Sumter County, trying to get through their Florida domicile checklist. They make it sound pretty easy, just list the Bushnell address they assigned you as your living address when necessary. Maybe I’m taking this a little too seriously or literally, but when I look up Florida’s official rules for obtaining a driver’s license, declaring domicile, etc., they specifically say you must maintain a residence in Florida and reside there. We have no plans to reside anywhere. We haven’t even been to our supposed residential address in Bushnell, Florida (do we need to?), and though we’ll probably come to Florida somewhat regularly because we like it, we’re not sure when or how often. So, how do we declare a domicile in Florida—or anywhere—without committing perjury? And when it comes to proving residency, how can I do that? The Escapees Mail Service instructions say the Sumter County DMV will accept the Escapees:Home welcome letter, but the welcome letter they sent only had the Texas mailing address on it (they sent the Florida address separately.) Other guides on establishing residency suggest proving residency to the DMV by using mail that has been sent to your Florida address, but Escapees specifically says not to have stuff sent there, to have your mail sent to Texas. We’re only supposed to use the Florida address for things like insurance, drivers’ licenses, and car registration—but we can’t get those things without proving residency first! Can any Florida residents who don’t really live in Florida help me? Thanks!
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