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Everything posted by Strakurinn

  1. Handling the aftermath of a car accident

    After less than a week in Germany, I already received a token of German hospitality in the form of a car accident. This morning my wife got rammed by a van that ran over a stop sign. The driver claimed she did not saw the sign and that she was in a hurry to get her son to a football match. Fortunately, no one was injured (there were 3 children in the cars), but our car got the front side well damaged.   The police came and, thanks God, there were witnesses that helped explain what happened (the other driver did not even say she was sorry, unbelievable). So the police filed a report and gave us a copy of it. The report only says the names, addresses, phone numbers and car details of both drivers. Plus contact info for the witnesses. I asked the police officer about the other driver's insurance company details and also about the fact that in the report it did not state any details of what happened. He said that information is confidential and that he would write another report in the police station explaining all those details.   According to the police, I did not have to worry, he said to take the car to a garage shop and hand them the copy of the report he gave me. He said in the copy he gave me comes a report number that can be linked to the other report he would write in the police station. That way, the repair shop will be able to know the other driver's insurance company and contact them to organize the repair and bill them directly.   Being that this is our first accident ever, I am skeptic of this approach, but I do not know if it is the standard way to do it in Germany. Can someone who has had an accident in Germany in the past advise me if this is normal procedure? Should I do something else to ensure my car is repaired asap and that the other person's insurance takes care of the payment? How long does it normally take for these situations to sort out, meaning, are German insurers fast to approve repairs, etc.?   This is such a nuissance, specially if the trains go on strike!   Thanks for your feedback.   Daniel
  2. Hello TT readers,   I am a EU national pondering whether or not to apply for German citizenship (naturalization).  I fulfill all the requirements but don’t really feel much will change for me in my everyday life in here whether I am a German national or a EU national.  However, the example of Brexit have made me think if I should use the opportunity that I fulfill all the requirements and apply for citizenship.   Should something crazy like the disolution of the EU or another “Brexit type” situation involving my home country ever happen, it would be nice to have the same rights as German citizens, but it also poses the question if there are any (seldom talked about) obligations that could eventually be seen as a drawback after becoming a German citizen.     Particularly, I am interested to know if there are any tax or financial implications (besides the application fees).  For instance, I think it is likely that at some point in the future I would like to live and work in another country before retirement, and also, most likely once retired, I would like to live in another EU country (other than Germany).  These potential future plans make me wonder if naturalization is the right thing for me...   1a) Do German citizens residing abroad need to fill out a tax declaration in Germany every year even if they don’t have any income, capital gains or property in Germany?   1b) Linked to 1a above, I will definitely have a pension associated to my years of contribution to the German social security system.  If I reside abroad after retirement, will that pension have a different tax treatment (in Germany) if I am a German citizen as opposed to a EU national?   2) Is there a difference in tax treatment for inheritance purposes between German citizens and EU nationals while residing in Germany?   3) Are German citizens required to pay any special taxes or contributions to the German system while residing abroad?   I appreciate your thoughts / advice with regards to these questions.  Much appreciated!            
  3. Pros and cons of German citizenship

    Thank you to everyone that answered to my posting, specially the ones that stayed on the subject.  It was nice to read the other answers though...  as for the possibility to be labeled a "baddie" upon taking German citizenship; I believe no one should be tainted by what their ancestors did.  Only the ones with direct responsibility over what happened are "baddies".  It is good to remember history so it does not happen again, but one should see things with a critical mind... almost everyone involved in WWII was a "baddie" (and I mean both sides Axis and Allies), some by choice and others by necessity.  War is a sad thing.