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residency in South Dakota?


dorrph

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After a few years of thinking, we have decided to go full time and sell everything. Since we will not have a home anywhere, I am under the impression that South Dakota is the only option for us to set up residency. Do you have to have a home in Florida or Texas in order to become a resident?

 

Our house just went on the market and my husband plans to retire in January 2015.

 

I would love to hear anyone's advice.

 

Laurie

 

 

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Texas has a lot to offer particularly if you use the Escapees as your domicile address. There are several good South Dakota mail services but there are fewer health care options. Florida also has several good mail services but I never really looked into it.

 

Escapees "How to be a Texan" booklet is a good starting point regardless of the state you choose.

 

PDF: http://www.escapees.com/MailService/Docs/texan.pdf

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Do you have to have a home in Florida or Texas in order to become a resident?

 

No.

 

South Dakota, Texas, and Florida are all viable options to use as a domicile state when you start fulltiming. There are differences between these states (Stanley mentioned one...health insurance is more difficult to come by for fulltimers in South Dakota), so some research on your part will be necessary to determine which state best suits your needs.

 

Keep in mind that you must return to South Dakota in order to renew your driver's licenses. In Texas, you can renew online or via mail every other time. I don't know about Florida.

 

Texas also has just recently changed their law regarding vehicle inspections to be effective in 2015. It used to be that you didn't have to return to the state simply for an inspection. The new law makes an inspection mandatory before vehicle registration renewal. This impact not only fulltimers using Texas as a domicile, but also people like truck drivers, so there are a lot of people working to get an exception to this new law...stay tuned for the final outcome.

 

As you can see, South Dakota is NOT your ONLY option for a domicile state.

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As mentioned, there are three leading states, Florida, Texas, and South Dakota. The reason for that popularity is that all three share the lack of any time requirement to live there to be a legal resident, the lack of any state income tax, and have reasonable laws on taxes as well as all being willing to accept a mail service to get your driving license and register/insure vehicles. In addition, FL & TX both allow you to use that mail service to register to vote, while SD lets you do so using some local RV park as an address.

 

Escapee's RV Club has the most popular of all mail services but that is probably because they are far more than just a mail service but a complete support system for the fulltime RVer. For that reason there are many who choose to use either SD or FL or even some other state who still are members of Escapees as are many who are not fulltimers. Escapees have the only mail service address that has been tested through the courts and upheld. In addition, Livingston is probably the only community where no public official, business person, or professional service person will ever ask what a fulltimer is or how we live. Escapes are a major share of the voting community there and a very significant impact upon the local economy.

 

There are other state that some people choose to use, such as Nevada, Oregon, Tenn. and several others. Each person must examine the issues and the laws of the various choices and see what fits them best. Like most things in live there is no one choice which is best for everyone. I suggest that you might be well served if you take the time to read this article from Escapee's magazine which I wrote for them.

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We vote for South Dakota. If you are on Medicare, health care is not an issue. We choose My Home Address because it is in the smallest town and we get that "small town" service.

 

We have an HDT which in South Dakota is a private truck (pickup) and requires no special license like is required in Texas.

 

Sales tax is low for new vehiles.

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Whenever I researched Florida, I thought a person had to reside there for 6 months a year. Is it different for full timers? Would I have to camp there for any length of time to become a resident? Health insurance is not an issue, but state income tax is. I know Florida residents get half off state park camping fees. Would that work for full timers also.

 

Thanks for you input. I will also read the article in Escapees magazine.

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We use MyDakotaAddress in Madison, SD. Teri does a bang up job and is also a small town. Contrary to a previous statement we are registered to vote at our mail address and not some campground. We love being from South Dakota. The tax on your vehicles is less than half of Texas and our vehicle insurance was considerably cheaper as well since we are in a small town in Lake County.

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"In addition, FL & TX both allow you to use that mail service to register to vote, while SD lets you do so using some local RV park as an address."

 

That's incorrect. SD also uses your mail forwarding address for drivers lic, vehicle reg, voting and CCW permit. The only place the campground address shows up is on your overnight stay form to qualify for their fulltimers exemption to the Federal Real ID law requiring proof of residence.

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NO, you have to have a physical address to use in order to obtain a driver's license. We used the physical address at St Brendan's Isle mail forwarding service to declare our Domicile in Florida. Remember, there is a difference between Domicile and Residence. Residence is where you are presently. Domicile is where you plan to return to and where you set up your driver's license, vehicle registrations, and voter registrations. We have since purchased a lot in Florida, but did not have to do so. We set up our Domicile in Florida long before (several months) deciding to purchase our lot. And it's just a lot, not a house.

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NO, you have to have a physical address to use in order to obtain a driver's license.

 

But not in South Dakota. Although our MyDakotaAddress address is a physical street location. We have driver's licenses, voter registration and a nursing license all at that address.

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  • 4 weeks later...

We are just graduating to full time and becoming South Dakota residents. Our rig is already

registered there and within a few weeks we finish all the other steps by actually going there.

I used an RV Health Insurance Specialist (advertising in Escapees) and I thought there were great health insurance

options for South Dakota.I just signed up.

Did we miss something?

Lynn

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Whenever I researched Florida, I thought a person had to reside there for 6 months a year. Is it different for full timers?

I am wondering where you got that information? I know that many fulltimers spend little or now time in FL and maintain a residence there, just as we do in TX and in SD. None of those states have any kind of time requirement to be a legal resident.

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What I meant Joel was that the mail forwarding service WAS our actual physical address for all the legal matters to change domicile. Because of 911 and new Homeland Security rules I believe most states (perhaps all states) do require some sort of physical presence. In your and our case this happened to be our mail forwarding service physical address. I guess I just assumed you used the mail forwarding service as the address listed on your driver's license. That's what we did. The St Brendan's Isle mail forwarding service address with our box number became our official Florida address for the Change of Domicile.

 

When we bought our lot in Florida, we changed our official address to the lot address, but we already had established domicile in Florida.

 

We happen to stay in Florida for 6 months or more each year, but this is a choice, not a requirement. We established our physical address in Florida with St. Brendan's Isle in Sept. of 2013 by starting the service at that time, arrived in Florida on Nov. 1st of 2013, then in January of 2014 we changed our domicile to Florida. All this was done using the address of the service.

 

In April 2014 we bought our lot and recorded the deed with Marion County. We then changed our address to the lot address, although we have maintained the mail service as well. When we left Florida at the end od April, we filed a temporary change of address with the USPS so they forwarded our mail from our lot to our mail forwarding service. We could then have St. Brendan's Isle send the mail wherever we were.

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Keep in mind that you must return to South Dakota in order to renew your driver's licenses. In Texas, you can renew online or via mail every other time. I don't know about Florida.

For clarity, once you have gone through Real ID verification, You only have to return to South Dakota every other time for drivers license renewal.

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For clarity, once you have gone through Read ID verification, You only have to return to South Dakota every other time for drivers license renewal.

Unless this has changed very recently, us FTers still need to return to SD every 5 years for license renewal. We had a discussion about this on these forums when SD changed the law to allow every other time mail or internet renewal. The law still requires proof of current residency in the state upon renewal.

 

As a result, I checked with SD DMV to see how they would handle it. They sent me a response (which I posted on a thread somewhere on here that I can't find right now). But in any case, what they told us was that for FTers, the recent proof of residency would still require a campground or motel stay of at least a night. They did say they would accept proof of anytime up to 6 months prior of the renwal-so a fairly large window.

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  • 5 months later...

We use MyDakotaAddress in Madison, SD. Teri does a bang up job and is also a small town. Contrary to a previous statement we are registered to vote at our mail address and not some campground. We love being from South Dakota. The tax on your vehicles is less than half of Texas and our vehicle insurance was considerably cheaper as well since we are in a small town in Lake County.

We signed up with them also. Teri have been very kind and helpfull.

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X2 on My Dakota Address. Teri is terrific.

 

A couple tips on getting your DLs - make sure your overnight receipts have both people on the receipt. If your receipt shows only one person, the other has no proof of overnight stay and therefore will not qualify for DL. Been there done that!!!

 

Also, make sure DW has proof of all name changes. Maiden - married - divorced - remarried etc. This can be done via birth certs and marriage certificates.

 

ALL certificates (birth, marriage, adoption etc.) MUST have an original seal from the issuing authority. Marriage licenses without a seal will not fly. Unofficial copies of anything don't cut it. They want to see official seals on all that apply. Again, been there done that!

 

If you do have problems - don't take the counter person's rejection as final and leave. Ask to talk with a supervisor. Remain calm but insistent - you will get help but it can be a hassle - Guess what - been there done that!!!

 

If you have all your ducks in a row and officially validated the DL process is painless. If not, remaining calm is the best thing you can do. Once you lose it, you've lost everything. Fortunately, we remained calm and got help. Still ended up a hassle chasing everything down and sent for approval to state headquarters in Pierre, but we did get it - eventually.

 

Good Luck!!

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Also, make sure DW has proof of all name changes. Maiden - married - divorced - remarried etc. This can be done via birth certs and marriage certificates.

 

ALL certificates (birth, marriage, adoption etc.) MUST have an original seal from the issuing authority. Marriage licenses without a seal will not fly. Unofficial copies of anything don't cut it. They want to see official seals on all that apply. Again, been there done that!

 

 

 

If you have current passports you can ignore all of this. For years people have failed to understand that the passport is the "ultimate" proof of identity document under US law. All the IDs you need for getting a job, opening a bank account or getting a license are unnecessary if you have a passport. No need for name change proof for a woman, either. Four years ago we got our "federally compliant" SD licenses with nothing more than passports and our Maryland licenses.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Unless this has changed very recently, us FTers still need to return to SD every 5 years for license renewal. We had a discussion about this on these forums when SD changed the law to allow every other time mail or internet renewal. The law still requires proof of current residency in the state upon renewal.

 

As a result, I checked with SD DMV to see how they would handle it. They sent me a response (which I posted on a thread somewhere on here that I can't find right now). But in any case, what they told us was that for FTers, the recent proof of residency would still require a campground or motel stay of at least a night. They did say they would accept proof of anytime up to 6 months prior of the renwal-so a fairly large window.

I believe they accept an campground/motel/etc receipt dated within 1 year of renewal which means if you "pass thru" SD within a year of your renewal date you can renew by mail.

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Also, make sure DW has proof of all name changes. Maiden - married - divorced - remarried etc. This can be done via birth certs and marriage certificates.

 

Note that this applies only if the woman's name is different than the name on the documents she's using for identification. So, if she's using her birth certificate as an identification document, then she'll need marriage certificates for all marriages (and divorce decrees)...this assumes, of course, that she actually changed names upon marriage. As long as all documents have the same name on them (including a passport), then none of these additional documents will be necessary.

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Note that this applies only if the woman's name is different than the name on the documents she's using for identification. So, if she's using her birth certificate as an identification document, then she'll need marriage certificates for all marriages (and divorce decrees)...this assumes, of course, that she actually changed names upon marriage. As long as all documents have the same name on them (including a passport), then none of these additional documents will be necessary.

 

To repeat, none of the above matters if the woman has a passport! The passport eliminates the need for a birth certificate and no name change paper-trail is required.

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If you already have a federally compliant SD or other state driver license in your possession, you only need two proofs of address for a new or renewal SD license.

 

I may have missed it, but I saw no requirement for a photo ID on the document lists other than a passport or federally compliant license.

 

Documents Required to Obtain a Driver License

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Two kinds of photo ID and the names must match. A passport is not enough.

 

And the Social Security card name needs to match everything else.

 

The first time you apply for an SD license, if you have a valid driver's license from another state and a current passport with the same name as the license, that's all you need. The passport is considered proof of citizenship; it provides the same documentation as a birth certificate and ALL the name change paperwork. The license fulfills the proof of identity requirement. The same two documents are all you need for getting a job or anything else in the US.

 

And you don't have to present a Social Security card, all you need is a W-2 or 1099 with the same name and SSA number (as long as the 1099 isn't issued by a company you own). Even the Social Security Admin, on its own website, tells you that there's no need to have a new card if you have any of these.

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