If you are planning on moving overseas from New Zealand, whether for a few years or permanently, there are a few things you should do to tie up loose ends, especially when it comes to your finances.
1. GET ALL OF THE NECESSARY PAPERWORK DONE
You will want to let all important businesses (that send you bills) know that you're moving overseas and sort out final payments for these before you leave. This includes your bank, your super funds, insurance providers, your accountant, Inland Revenue and so on. New Zealand Post offers a Change of Address service to help you do this, where you can let up to 60 businesses know your new address (if you already know it).
You can also have New Zealand Post redirect your mail overseas (or to another NZ address - maybe your family?) for up to 12 months. This can be quite costly though, but could be helpful if you still have some outstanding bills and invoices you need to receive.
2. GET TRAVEL INSURANCE
While travel insurance is always a good idea, you should also check if it is a requirement of your visa - you may be required to have travel insurance for the entire time you're overseas and you may need to do a bit of research to find the right policy depending on which country you are moving to and how long you intend on staying for.
3. SORT OUT YOUR FINANCES
It's a good idea to see an accountant before you leave as there can be many tax implications associated with a permanent or long-term overseas move.
You'll also need to sort out a bank account. First up - do you need to close your bank account in New Zealand? If you're moving overseas for good then you may want to, but if you still need it to pay bills and so on, then you may want to keep it open.
Once you're settled in your new country you will want to look at setting up a new bank account there, and once that is done, you can use a money transfer service like GlobalSend to have your money moved from your New Zealand account to your new bank account.
In the meantime though, you will want to make sure you have access to money for "settling-in expenses", like connecting utilities, food, bills, transport and so on. To be safe, maybe consider having multiple ways of accessing this money - take some cash with you (we can help you get the best exchange rate before you go), a travel money card and a credit or debit card (if you don't cancel these before you go). Just check your card will work in the country you're moving to, and let the bank know you're moving so they don't freeze your cards.
4. SORT OUT YOUR PERSONAL RECORDS
You will want to take all of your important documents with you, such as birth and marriage certificates, citizenship documents, divorce and custody arrangements if applicable, police checks, education qualifications and so on.
It's a good idea to take the originals with you, as well as certified copies to leave in a separate place. You should also leave copies with friends or family in New Zealand in case anything happens to the originals or your copies. We'd also suggest taking photocopies of your bank cards, passport, licence etc and keeping them in a safe place.
Finally, before you go, have a look at what documents you might need to open a bank account overseas and make sure you take originals and copies of those documents too. Different countries and different banks have different requirements, so you'll need to do some research into banks in your new country.
5. LOOK INTO YOUR SUPERANNUATION
New Zealand has bilateral social security arrangements with a number of countries and this helps remove issues of double superannuation payments, but you'll need to look into this before you go. You can chat to your accountant or contact Inland Revenue to address any questions you might have before you go.
There are loads more things that should be on your checklist if you're moving overseas - it's a big task. But hopefully this will cover some of the top finance to-do's to help you get on the right track.
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