Tuesday, May 03, 2011

A day trip to the US embassy

Today I finally got round to doing something I should have done a while ago. I finally applied for my itin number so I can get an exemption from paying tax on my US earnings in the US. I'd reached a point where it had to be done otherwise everything I earn in the US gets taxed at 30% there and then again here at 20%.
If you're wondering why I hadn't sorted it out before it's because it's a real pain in the bum. It involves getting a letter from my publisher/s taking my passport, and a form to the US embassy in London in person and having them verify all the documents, copy them, they send them to Dallas and then all being well 12 weeks later you get sent your number so you can then fill out another form and pass it on to the publisher.
If I lived near London it wouldn't be such a big deal but with trying to balance family life, the day job and find the money for train fares it becomes a big deal.
Luckily today I had Phillipa Ashley to keep me company so we met up at Euston and went together. Mr Nell had been a bit antsy as Mr Bin Laden's recent demise may have caused problems but it worked in our favour as there wasn't a queue for the IRS dept. We dutifully surrendered our phones and car keys to the nice security people and Phillipa drank some of her water to prove it wasn't going to blow them all sky high and then we went through to the dept.
The man in the dept wasn't exactly Mr Cheerful but he was very helpful and made sure we had everything filled in correctly.
Even so we were quite glad to get out, reclaim our property and tazz off for lunch and a quick shufty around Marks and Sparks before getting the train home.
Definitely one of mine and Phillipa's stranger adventures but we had a lovely lunch and a good gossip. Now fingers crossed we get our numbers through okay!


Jane Lovering said...

I'm still putting off applying for mine - I need my passport, and it's too far to London for me to go in person. I know I'm going to have to do it soon, but....eeeeek! Well done to you and Phillipa for your fortitude.

Judy Jarvie said...

Good for you, Nell. Yes it is a faff but a necessary faff. Luckily going to the consulate in Edinburgh was acceptable so I didn't have to go too far!
In case it helps, mine and others I know of got their numbers in exactly six weeks!

Talli Roland said...

I want to say it sounds lovely, but going to an embassy is never really nice, is it?

Still, I'm glad you had company! :)

Phillipa said...

What a day - surreal but worth the 4 hour train journey to catch up with Nell and her news.

ChrisCross said...

I commented on Phillipa's blog as well - the two views make a wonderful picture of a bizarre visit. As I said to her, the US Embassy sounds scarey - and exactly how I imagined it would be.

Shirley Wells said...

I applied for - and received - mine by mail. I sent my passport off by special delivery (I like to live dangerously), they returned it the same way and, eventually, I received my shiny itin from Texas.