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Brad M

Does mail service address force domicile?

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Our house is on the market in New Mexico. We had assumed we'd declare domicile in Texas as soon as it's sold, but the more I research, the more complications I'm finding.

We're self-employed and in our 40's and thus dependent upon ACA health plans. One downside to TX is our coverage will be worse for a much greater cost. My wife has a lease on an office through the end of the year in NM and we'd also greatly prefer to keep our storage unit in NM, which will make it difficult to be safe from NM still claiming us even if we do everything else in TX (driver's license, vehicle reg, bank, mailing address, register new business). So for now we're going to stick with NM.

My question is, if we use a mail forwarding service such as Escapees with a TX address, is that going to start a whole chain of events with TX expecting us to register our vehicles, have to switch to a TX health plan, etc? I'm feeling like we're gonna get snapped in two with NM and TX tugging on us if we use a TX mail service.

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I would not think using a mailing service would force you to do anything.  Having a mailing service does not force it to be your domicile. 

Not sure how having a storage space and office force you to domicile there.  I could rent storage space in every state and they would not be all telling me that I have to get licensed and register everything I own there.

Health Insurance is more involved, as many of them you have to get services through your home network.   I have heard people planning their trips to go back to their home state for doctors appointments and visits as they are not nationally covered for routine exams out of state.

Edited by rynosback

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The mail service address would become my "home" address. Everything from my health insurance to the IRS would think that's where I live, hence the concern. I'm not sure why TX would not expect me to register vehicles there if that's my only home address...

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Just now, Roy & Ann said:

Have you tried Florida or South Dakota? Both have not state income tax. 

Yeah, South Dakota health insurance costs even more than Texas. Florida is slightly cheaper than TX, but nothing else about Florida suits our situation. ;)

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2 minutes ago, Brad M said:

The mail service address would become my "home" address. Everything from my health insurance to the IRS would think that's where I live, hence the concern. I'm not sure why TX would not expect me to register vehicles there if that's my only home address...

If you claim it as your domicile then yes you will need switch everything over to TX.  Sounds like you want the benefits of two different states.  I do not think you can have that.  So you need to just pick one.

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It's not that I'm looking for the benefits of two different states, I'm just wondering if using an out-of-domicile-state mail service throws a huge wrench in the works, which, according to this article I just found, it does:

https://www.escapees.com/articles-and-blogs/entry/signed-sealed-delivered-address-domicile

It sounds like it can be done (mail service in TX, domicile in NM), but it's murky with a lot of extra paperwork that I'm sure most people won't know what to do with. I'll just have to find a service with an NM address for now.

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The mail service address will just be your mailing address. It doesn't have to be your domicile. I could use any of my daughters, in three different states, as my mailing address. That doesn't make it my domicile address. 

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We were NC residents with an Escapees mail address for years before becoming Texans. No problem with IRS, Texas or NC. 

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We used SD as our mailing address for two years before we became SD residents prior to that all our vehicles, voting, taxes were still with our then domicile. We could have had out mail directed to any mail service in any state and it would have worked the same way.  

If you want to maintain a NM resident and are going to be fulltimers I would look for a mail forwarding service in NM.

Edited by jjwicklund

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As long as you have an address in New Mexico you can use for vehicle registrations and tax forms you should be fine with a Texas mail forwarder. Especially if you register to vote at the New Mexico address. Can you keep your wife's leased office and use that? For some businesses that works and others it doesn't.

Linda Sand

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We used a Florida mailing service and mailing address 4 years without becoming a resident.  We were residents of Michigan and kept our vehicles registered there, our driver's licenses, bank accounts etc.  We were simply paying a business to accept our mail and forward it to us at various addresses we provided.  We used our daughter's address as our residence address on everything, but our FL address as our mailing address.  This is how the taxes were filed also.  We then changed to a SD mailing service and became residents switching registrations, licenses, insurance etc to S Dakota.  We now have 1 address in SD that is our resident as well as mailing address.

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On 7/11/2017 at 0:13 PM, Brad M said:

My question is, if we use a mail forwarding service such as Escapees with a TX address, is that going to start a whole chain of events with TX expecting us to register our vehicles, have to switch to a TX health plan, etc?

Absolutely not! The definition of the legal term domicile is:

Quote

domicile

n. the place where a person has his/her permanent principal home to which he/she returns orintends to return. This becomes significant in determining in what state a probate of a deadperson's estate is filed, what state can assess income or inheritance taxes, where a party can begindivorce proceedings, or whether there is "diversity of citizenship" between two parties which maygive federal courts jurisdiction over a lawsuit. Where a person has several "residences" it may be amatter of proof as to which is the state of domicile. A business has its domicile in the state where itsheadquarters is located.

 

The key here is, the place that when traveling you always return to. In your case that is clearly NM. 

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Why move your mail to Texas? Why leave NM at all? Surely you can find a mail forwarding service in NM. Then there would be no question at all. 

Edited by Big5er
typo

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14 hours ago, Big5er said:

Surely you can find a mail forwarding service in NM.

If nothing else, The UPS Stores offer mail forwarding and there are several in New Mexico.

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On 7/11/2017 at 2:09 PM, Ronbo said:

The mail service address will just be your mailing address. It doesn't have to be your domicile. I could use any of my daughters, in three different states, as my mailing address. That doesn't make it my domicile address. 

I think your domicile is where you have your DL and vehicles registered. You can always get a UPS store address in NW and have them forward your mail when you tell them to. It won't be free, or even cheap, but everything in life is a tradeoff. You are still young and working. For me, my domicile will remain in my home state, but I am old and retired and all the 1st class mail I get now is bills that will go away when I sell my house. I do 95% of life online, so if I have mail forwarded every 90 days I am fine. But that is me. You, still working, might have a need to get mail.

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I got a mailing address from Escapees in Texas when we were domiciled in CA, and we are now domiciled in NC.  Never had an issue.  (I have a NC DL).

My wife and I are both self employed and in our 40s. We switched to the Aliera Healthcare ACA-exempt plan this year to get nationwide coverage.  So far it has worked out well, but has required us to become more active in managing our healthcare expenses, especially prescription medicine.  What's been handy has been the ability to do a teledoc to get a new prescription in whatever city/state we happen to be in.

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I haven't seen anything on bank accounts, banking - please pardon me if i missed it. When i go full time i will already have changed everything over to my SD address (mail, dl, veh reg, voting, etc.) but i would like to maintain my relationship with the bank i have been using for almost 30 years (a California credit union). Any one have any negative experiences or warnings about doing this that may provide California a means to question or reject my SD domicile claim. BTW, my pension check goes directly to the credit union via direct deposit.

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58 minutes ago, Matilda's mate said:

I haven't seen anything on bank accounts, banking - please pardon me if i missed it. When i go full time i will already have changed everything over to my SD address (mail, dl, veh reg, voting, etc.) but i would like to maintain my relationship with the bank i have been using for almost 30 years (a California credit union). Any one have any negative experiences or warnings about doing this that may provide California a means to question or reject my SD domicile claim. BTW, my pension check goes directly to the credit union via direct deposit.

I have the exact same plans.  I belong to Golden 1 Credit Union (Nor Cal) and I've been in San Diego for four years, where they don't have a G1 CU.....I've done all my banking on line and using other credit union ATMs (one of the really nice features of a CU).  I don't plan to change that.

If I've changed my domain (address, DL, veh. reg. insurance, voting, etc.) and will not be in California physically....I sure don't see how my physical bank address could make a difference?

I've never even seen this come up before but I'm sure other full timers are doing the same.  It'll be interesting to see how they respond.

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You should not have an issue using a bank regardless of the State it is located in.  The bigger issue is the address on your account.  It better match your State of domicile.

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6 minutes ago, JimK said:

You should not have an issue using a bank regardless of the State it is located in.  The bigger issue is the address on your account.  It better match your State of domicile.

True that^ .

We left our bank accounts in Michigan and simply changed associated address . No Problems . 

It's pretty much the same thing as ordering a pizza from the state next door every week . Just because you do some biz there doesn't make you a resident .

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My parents lived in AZ for twenty five yrs but banked in HB, CA   As said address on accounts need to reflect residence 

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We are residents of Texas now and our CU is SC. Even was when we were residents of NC. All my banking is on line anyway. 

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We started banking at USAA in Texas somewhere around 50 years ago. We've never been to that bank. And we didn't live in Texas when we began nor do we now.

Linda Sand

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