Pib

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  1. Amen brother! People can talk "if only the govt didn't take any social security tax and instead I invested it in a person account." Sounds good, but the fact is many, many people save little, spend every penny they make, make bad investments, investments go belly-up, etc." Preaching to the choir I know. Just for others listening in, Social Security tax is basically a "forced" savings plan because many, many people have to be forced to save....or save any significant amount. And some people wouldn't save a penny even if they had to because they figured they would just live off govt handouts when they get old. Social Security a very good thing and people don't really come to appreciate it until they near or reach retirement and then I'm sure most then think, durn good deal! (or at least they should think durn good deal based on what I paid in). I'm sure they would like having a higher pension (don't we all), but at the same time they realize it's still a pension they earned through payment of social security taxes in most cases. I say "most" cases because social security covers a lot of people who maybe didn't work a day in their life/pay any taxes.... like a wife drawing pension off her husband's work record, disabilities payments, etc....you know, the wide array of possible social safety net situations. The next time anyone looks at their Annual Social Security Statement look down on page 1 or 2 where they list the "total social security taxes" you paid over your work life...not what your employer paid also or your Medicare tax....just what "you" paid. Then divide that by the monthly pension you will get. I'm sure most folks will they say, "Wow!!!...only after approx 2 to 4 years they will have been paid back every penny of social security tax "they personally paid." And then for the remainder of their life their pension is like free money. Now as mentioned earlier everyone's pension is different since everyone made different earnings and paid different taxes during their work life. For me (and I retired before my full retirement age), after only after 37 months (3 years and 1 month) of monthly pension payments I will have been paid back every penny of social security tax I paid....I hope I still have several decades of living after that point to continue collecting my Social Security pension--like free money. Now I'm sure some may think, well, what about considering the equal amount paid by my employer and I could have got that in my pay extra to save also? Yea, nice thought, but employer's don't pay any more than they have to and if they didn't have to pay social security tax to the govt they are surely not going to pay it to you as a salary increase. And just over the last few days an American-Thai (dual citizen) which I helped apply for his security security pension since he worked in the U.S. for about a dozen years over a decade ago got his pension approved. Now he's getting significantly less pension than what I get since his earnings, etc., were different and fewer work years than mine, but when I pointed out to him what I mentioned above about dividing total personal security taxes paid divided by his monthly pension payment that he will recover every penny of social security tax he paid during his work life in only 22 months (1 years, 10 months) and then it's free money for the rest of his life. You could see his eyes just say, Good Deal! And of course he's pretty happy about the first 22 months of payments also. Seems his attitude about social security taxes he paid over his work life changed from a negative (wish I hadn't had to pay them) to a positive (guess the social security taxes I paid was a good investment). People are funny.
  2. Where you say "I'd get my full entitlement, your full entitlement will be based on "Your Taxed Social Security Earnings." If no earnings have the social security tax applied, then no entitlement is earned. Normally a person needs to earn 4 social security credits per year for at least 10 years for a total of at least 40 work credits to earn an entitlement on their earnings record which means the social security tax must be paid. Either your employer making the social security tax payment through with-holdings to your paycheck or you paying them separately if self-employed. Below is quote from the Social Security Annual Statement that sums it up. Assuming you have already earned 40 credits before retiring to Thailand, then you do indeed have a social security pension entitlement of X-amount whether you need to file a tax return or pay social security tax. I'm assuming that is your situation which is similar to mine where I retired to Thailand around 10 years before starting my social security pension....I started the pension before my full retirement age. Now I already had over 35 years of social security earnings and taxes paid so I was not hurt by the social security 35 year averaging rule. But say I had only worked 20 years, I would have ended up with 15 years of "zero" earnings/social security taxes paid and that would have lowered my entitlement using that 35 year averaging formula. If a person paid social security tax for some years and for other years didn't, then those years he didn't pay any social security tax are years he earns zero work credit for social security pension purposes. Remember, the basic social security pension formula is based on your indexed for inflation social security taxed earnings.....low earnings earning or no taxed earnings for X-years means a lower social security pension entitlement. The social security pension is different for everyone because everyone made different earnings and paid different taxes during their work life. Don't confuse whether you need to file a federal income tax return or not with the possible need to pay social security tax....two different animals.
  3. If they are not using a Point of Service (POS) machine just like they use a store checkouts I don't know what they could be using. Gotta have such a machine to insert/swipe the card which also validates the transaction. When I use my Krungsri branch they use the POS right at their position while I watch...each position seems to have a POS...receipt for signature spits out...I sign it...done. Now when I use my Bangkok Bank branch they don't have POS machines at every postion so they take my card to a desk behind a wall with several POSs on it, receipt for signature pops out....they bring the receipt back....I sign it...done. I was able to peek behind that wall one time to see the several centralized POS machines. Both branches also make copies of my main passport page and front of card...I sign that copy. The Visa/Mastercard/card logo exchange rate is used minus any "card-issuing bank" fees. The Thai bank TT, sight bill, travellers cheque or some FX rate is not used. All of mentioned rates will be "kinda" close to the card rate but that is just coincidence. And of course the excludes a DCC transaction which will be around 3% lower than the card rate.
  4. ^^^^Tried and true method of money launders, drug runners and terroists. Works at least 51% of the time.
  5. Me thinks you are going to have to return to Thailand to show up in person at the bank with all required documents. Thailand is the Land of Smiles for incoming money, but the Land of Frowns for outgoing money without all required documents (especially for large transfers).
  6. Looks like you can use PEA's Epay with payment coming from your Bangkok Bank account plus a few other banks. https://epay.pea.co.th/epay/ Unfortunately, many companies in Thailand don't setup bill payment capability with most/every Thai bank...instead they pick one or two banks and unless you have ibanking with those selected banks you are SOL. Looking at the KrungThai list of bill pay payees even they don't list PEA but do list MEA. Wonder if PEA is listed on any Thai bank's bill pay list or PEA just wants to push their PEA Epay instead?
  7. Here you go. http://www.bloodpressureuk.org/BloodPressureandyou/Thebasics/Bloodpressurechart
  8. OP, Are you really saying you tried to get "ibanking" setup with your bank but can't get it setup? Or are you saying you already have ibanking and can't figure out how to pay some billers? I use Bangkok Bank ibanking and pay all of my reoccurring utiliity type bills using that ibanking. Electricity (MEA), landline (TOT), cell phone service (DTAC), cable TV (TrueVisions), and internet (AIS Fibre). Can't pay my water bill using ibanking simply because the water company is apparently to cheap to set up ibanking payment with any banks....I pay my water bill at 7-11.
  9. Regarding how many years your SS pension payment is based on (i.e., 35 years) take a look at below webpage for a layman's explanation. https://www.fool.com/retirement/general/2014/08/02/how-are-social-security-benefits-calculated.aspx And just partial quote from above webpage regarding how some incorrectly think it's only based on your final few years of earnings.
  10. Best to keep in mind that personal income taxes (and possible exemptions) are different from Social Security and Medicare taxes. Retirement Planner: Work Outside The United States https://www.ssa.gov/planners/retire/international.html Social Security Tax Consequences of Working Abroad (note the Who Must Pay Self Employment paragraph regarding Social Security and Medicare taxes) https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers/social-security-tax-consequences-of-working-abroad
  11. Couple of inaccuracies in the post above. From the Social Security Agency website regarding how your SS benefits are calculated. Delay starting your social security pension from full retirement age 66 till age 70 will increase your pension by 32%. If full retirement age more than 66 then the percentage is lower. https://www.ssa.gov/planners/retire/1943-delay.html From the Social Security Agency website regarding COLA adjustment over last 5 years....4 of last 5 years have had COLA adjustments. Now, if you are signed up for Medicare Part B and it.'s premium increases which it normally does that would most likely eat-up all your COLA adjustment if you don't get that much of a . Social Security pension.
  12. Haven't run it but thanks for the info.
  13. If you asked your bank or it's in the card docs and got above answer then good. However, if making an assumption about the cash advance limit....like equaling the daily purchase limit....your should ask your card-issuing bank. The reason I say above and for others listening in, when using a credit card (or debit card)" do not assume" whatever the daily "purchase limit may be" is also the "daily cash advance limit when done over the counter." For example I use a couple of U.S. no foreign transaction fee and no cash advance fee credit cards for cash advances/counter withdrawals.. I also prepay the amount I plan to get to avoid an interest charge. Seems to be very similar to the UK Clarity credit card in terms of fees. Now although I have a $10K USD credit line on each card when it comes to cash advances there are specific limitations....that is, you can not pull $10K per cash advance transaction/daily or anything close to that, whether at an ATM or at the counter. With the exception of the ATM limitation, the counter withdrawal limitation is not stated in the documents I got from the card-issuing bank nor on their website....can only be found out by contacting the a bank rep. Now I asked my card-issuing bank several times over several months regarding the cash advance limitation and each time got below answer from a different rep...the answer addresses doing a cash advance to put money into your bank account with the bank, from an ATM, and/or a counter withdrawal at another bank. See below....and note the $2K (approx Bt70K) cash advance limit per transaction/per day when doing a counter withdrawal...and if I wanted to I could also use an ATM to get $1K....so, if I wanted to I could do a counter withdrawal and use an ATM and get a total of $3K (approx Bt100K) per day. What really drove me to ask was the first time I did a counter withdrawal using one of the credit cards at a Bangkok Bank branch I asked for Bt100K (approx $3K) and the transaction was rejected...the rejection memo on the point of service machine said "Over Limit." Well, that's embarrassing......my brain gears were clicking....what to do....what to do?.. Well, I just told the bank rep to try again for Bt60K (less than $2K) and the transaction processed no problem. I came home...send an email to my credit card-issuing bank asking about "cash advance limits" and got above answer. So, whenever I go to the bank to do a counter withdrawal, I ensure I ask for a little below the $2K limit in baht.....been doing this for a couple of years now. I also asked another one of my credit card-issuing banks regarding the cash advance limit on a particular credit card (didn't plan to use it for a cash advance but wanted to know the cash advance limitation....also had a high credit line on this account)....their answer was the daily cash advance limit whether by ATM or counter. withdrawal was $1K (approx Bt35K). Actually, I could make a purchase of a product/service way, way above $1K but for a cash advance there was a limit. Yea, be sure to confirm with your card-issuing bank for debit or credit cards what you daily limit is for ATM and at a financial institution (a.k.a, cash advance, counter withdrawal, etc)...don't assume just because a counter withdrawal in the branch is processed using a point of service machine like at a merchant checkout for product/service then that means my cash advance advance limit will match my purchase limit.....or a counter withdrawal cash advance limit will match the ATM withdrawal limit. Very different limits can exist.
  14. Glad the OP was actually riding in a lane. Most motorcycles in Bangkok seem to drive "on the divider lines between lanes" versus actually in the lane. But yea, my understanding is motorcycles are suppose to drive in the left most lane but few do unless nearing a police checkpoint...that's the point where they turn into model drivers.