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About Starshollow

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  • Birthday 02/02/1967

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  • Location Starnberg
  • Nationality German
  • Hometown Munich
  • Gender Male
  • Interests finance, investment
    Tennis, Golf
    Reading (especially history, but also poems)

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33,831 profile views
  1. Now faster way (back) into public health insurance

      yes. there is such law...and it makes actually a lot of sense, both socially and financially speaking.  Said law clearly states that if you opted out from the German social system (i.e. out of public health insurance) you can't just decide to get into it again when it suits you better.  That is particularly right if you have been with private health insurance for a long time. The rationale behind it is simple: the public health insurance system is based on income. Because it offers really good health insurance for all kind of people, those with low and those with high income, those with major medical conditions or even disablement etc.  Consequently, it is more expensive regarding the monthly contributions for people with higher incomes. Which makes it attractive for those who can (self-employed and employees with a gross income in excess of certain levels) to take private health insurance instead. Because private health insurance - when you are young and healthy when entering it - can be significantly lower in monthly costs in comparison. Moving to private health insurance means, however, that you are leaving (!) the public health insurance for good. And because your decision means that you won't pay into the public pot, you can't later just reverse this decision, it would create otherwise a massive Free-rider-problem in public health insurances. While up to the age of 55 there are some ways to get back into public health insurance thru employment, there is no such way back into public system after that age-threshold. Therefore it is correct that your husband cannot go into public insurance now anymore and that also means - from what John wrote above about your situation - that you can't, either for lack of sufficient prior public health insurance in Germany or another EU-memberstate.   Cheerio  
  2. That will very much depend on your ABH. It is not accepted - and IMO correctly so - by many ABH across Germany, especially for those where the perspective of a stay in Germany is undefined or theoretically unlimited. Cheerio  
  3. Now faster way (back) into public health insurance

    this info is correct.  If he did not/needed not register his business formally at the city hall somehow, he'll probably need to declare the termination of his business in writing, shut down all websites, advertising and what not for good.   Cheerio
  4. HI there, SALUS BKK is just another public health insurance - thus their monthly costs are little-to-no-different to TK. Since you are registered here, you need to sign up for German health insurance. But you already might have missed the 3-month-deadline for signing up with public health insurance (depending on when in January you registered here in Germany). Therefore move swiftly on this NOW ! Private German health insurances have zero interest in new clients who are unemployed - no chance in hell for you to get an application accepted in your current situation. Therefore - and also for a myriad of other reasons - for now, stay with public health insurance in Germany. (plus: private insurance won't be really any less expensive anyway). And stay away from any international private health insurances... they are not meant for people in a situation/status like you and are thus for you not a compliant means of health insurance here in Germany anyway. Cheerio  
  5. Tax / pension relief for freelancers due to coronavirus?

    there are a couple of things open to you: a) you can claim a tax deferral. There are online forms available for this. You can claim this deferal both for income tax as well as local business tax (Gewerbesteuer, but you are probably not liable for that anyway) b ) not sure if this also applies to public pension contributions, but check with the Bundesrentenanstalt directly for that. c) there are also offers from both the Federal governement and the states (I know for Berlin for sure) to get direct funds up to 5.000 EUR or so to keep you afloat.  Check if you can find this yourself, if not, let me know and I'll post something here on Toytown for everyone.   Cheerio  
  6. New restrictions for US citizens getting mortgages?

    I am checking with our mortgage expert (who is currently in lockdown in Spain... ) but I have not heard anything. But as was said above, it is definitely not the German government doing anything here on the law-side of things but rather the SEC or  IRS in the US coming up with some new regulation that makes it for German banks simply too complicated or risky financially to lend out to US-nationals. If that is the case at all... will know more soon, but will take some time.   Cheerio  
  7. IFA reccomendation

    Hi Spider - these are UK pension pots you are talking about, right? Are they defined benefit schemes (DB) or defined contribution schemes (DC). Only in case of DB schemes with a value of >30k GBP is it required to involve a UK-based IFA for a so-called APTA (appropriate pension transfer analysis), something that was implemented to make the life of the typical scammers who have created so much hazards and losses for people with decent pension pots in recent years a bit harder. (you know what kind of "advisors" I am talking about, of course, as a long-time Toytowner).   If you need someone for an APTA, let me know. We do a large number of such transfers for our clients and have the right partners in UK for that kind of additional needs, too.   Cheerio  
  8. Stock market investing in Germany for dummies

    timing of the markets is something that most of the times for most of the people does not work. Therefore time IN the markets is so much more important. While a little bit of fun and speculation can be a nice thing, please make sure that you have an overall balanced and fitting-to-you-personally set up an investment strategy for the long run. Where buy-and-hold is the main parameter to follow for good success. Cheerio  
  9. Warnig: Cold-Calls from 07554-63729

    For once I was actually at the receiving end of a cold-call... This guy called several times and eventually, I thought it could be a business partner of ours. thus I took the call and a script-trained talking monkey started to try to sell me some triple-A-rated business opportunity. When I told him that this was an illegal cold-call, he got very aggressive and offensive. After I told him to go to hell and hung up, he tried to call several times again, probably in a vain attempt to have the last word. What a (fill in an expression of your own fitting to the case/person :-) )   Anyway, fair warning for everyone out there: don't accept these calls. They are illegal cold-calling and you should never deal with someone who has to use such means to approach you. Violating such simple consumer protection laws in Germany is a bad calling-card if there ever was any.   Cheerio  
  10. Voluntary PRSI contributions in Ireland

    very interesting, thank you for all your efforts in this !   Cheerio  
  11. Hi there - this is important info, albeit a bit late for this particular fella after  3+ years, I am afraid. But since you are a professional in this field: a) welcome b ) perhaps support Toytown by advertising? c ) perhaps write a WIKI here on Toytown about this topic to help informing and educating Expats who are looking for such info?   I am active here since 2006 and it is a great place to assist Expats and make a name for yourself by offering free and worthwhile information and content to those looking for such info..   Cheerio  
  12. Pension refund Germany

    HI Theo, great that you want to help...but the questions you answer to are 5-6 years old (2014) and long since dealt with some way or other... :-)   Cheerio  
  13. US Citizen residing in Germany. Where to invest?

    Yep, fully understand. But a wider and more diversified approach is to look at the market capitalisation of the world stock markets and spread your investments via ETFs accordingly. No surprise: you'll still have a major share of investments into US stock markets as you can see from my picture below...but you'll also participate in the other markets and become less dependent on how the US stockmarkets react.   In the last couple of years, of course, a US-stocks bias worked well enough, but it is a totally random thing as to which  area of the world is doing best and the opposite, hence market-chasing is as senseless as is market-timing in my professional opinion. Having said that: Warren Buffet obviously is from another planet or star-system with his long track record of picking excellent value-stocks and stick with them.    
  14. US Citizen residing in Germany. Where to invest?

      HI Jeba, it is a relatively new development that most US banks/platforms do not allow residents of Germany/the EU anymore to invest directly into US-domiciled funds. In September Charles Schwab informed all their clients in Germany that they will not be allowed anymore to invest in new funds, not even re-investing dividends etc. Reason is that the fact-sheets for investment funds in the US differ in some parts from the fact sheets that the EU has made obligatory for funds sold within the EU. Since it is too much trouble to put in those extra data (it is mostly about forecasting performance), US investment funds won't go thru with this and rather not sell anymore. Only way around is if there is a financial advisor in between as "discretionary manager" because then for the US fund industry the client is a professional and not the end-consumer. This is what we are working on right now. We have a good solution for investment capital >250k EUR and shall soon and finally have solutions in place for lower lump-sums as well as investment plans. Only downside - clients will be able to choose only from 7 different portfolios (differing in the balance between stocks and bonds) and have no say in choosing their own funds. There are some offers on the market from third parties with very complex investment products that claim to offer similar investment chances, but they rely heavily on commissions and I have serious doubts about them. I am also currently negotiating with a German pension insurance company to set up their normal pension plans as commission-free and with a portfolio of US-domiciled ETFs. And, of course, you can always you Berkshire Hathaway stocks...not a bad idea in general, but not a really world-wide diversification and then you still need to find US-domiciled bonds to go with that.   Cheerio  
  15. Generali Vision can't charge when cancelling early

    usually, if someone gets close to actually taking this to court, they settle (with a non-disclosure-agreement as part of the settlement). You just need to make a very convincing case and be persistent. It is usually the company that sold it to you that settles it and not Generali, though.   Cheerio