Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

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Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Carolina » Thu Jan 19, 2017 1:52 pm

Hundreds of thousands of elderly Britons living in Europe may be forced to return to the UK unless the government guarantees that their healthcare will continue to be reimbursed by the NHS, campaigners for British people settled in Spain and France have warned.
https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... are_btn_tw

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Kilkis » Thu Jan 19, 2017 4:10 pm

Completely agree with the article. We have said the same thing on here for some time. For many of us it is not a question of being able to afford private health insurance it is that insurance companies will not normally issue it to people over a certain age at any price. Personally I might stay if health cover was removed but would I be allowed to? Healthcare cover is a condition of residence under the current rules. Even if the EU agreed that UK citizens already resident in the EU could remain would they waive the need for healthcare cover? I suspect not.

The article also illustrates a wider problem facing Theresa May. On every single issue, she doesn't have to convince a single entity called the EU but rather 27 member states. For example think of a trade deal on cars. Obviously Germany, France and Spain have a massive interest in this but there are plenty of countries that don't. Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Croatia, Cyprus, Malta, Luxembourg, Ireland and Greece have virtually no motor industry and I suspect for some of the others, such as Portugal and Finland, very little is exported to the UK. Why should they agree to a free trade deal on vehicles? You can make a similar argument for virtually every individual trade deal you can think of.

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby mouche » Thu Jan 19, 2017 4:28 pm

Well, you can't expect to have the cake and eat it too!

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Jeffstclair » Thu Jan 19, 2017 5:40 pm

Yes this the kind of grey area that is gonna haunt us for the next few years. I suspect for most folk this will be thing to consider if planing where to spend your retirement , along with the freezing of the state pension thing ....ho hum...

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby paul g » Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:22 pm

Project fear still going then.

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby bobscott » Thu Jan 19, 2017 7:18 pm

Kilkis wrote:
The article also illustrates a wider problem facing Theresa May. On every single issue, she doesn't have to convince a single entity called the EU but rather 27 member states. For example think of a trade deal on cars. Obviously Germany, France and Spain have a massive interest in this but there are plenty of countries that don't. Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Croatia, Cyprus, Malta, Luxembourg, Ireland and Greece have virtually no motor industry and I suspect for some of the others, such as Portugal and Finland, very little is exported to the UK. Why should they agree to a free trade deal on vehicles? You can make a similar argument for virtually every individual trade deal you can think of.

Warwick


On the other hand, why oppose a trade deal on cars if you're not involved in that trade? Perhaps agreeing might be used as a bargaining chip for something else like - 'we helped you lot on cars,so now you help us on agriculture!'. In general I agree, but my greatest worry (healthcare aside which you mentioned earlier) is that the UK is allegedly short on skilled negotiators. It only needs one loose canon in the team to kill a deal. No shortage there then!! Bob.
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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Maud » Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:47 pm

I read the article this morning but didn't 'post' it as I thought we were not speculating on here. TM is a 'loose cannon' at the moment, believing her own rhetoric! I would like to think that her predictions are going to be proved correct for the sake of the U.K.....but I have my doubts.

I think the article was also based on a bit of scaremongering. - "Sort something out TM or else all us ex-pats will be coming back to the UK taking up housing and costing you money!"

I think we have to 'wait and see' for now.

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Tim » Thu Jan 19, 2017 9:19 pm

Agreed, Maud. Also, you have to read the article in the context of the political leanings and stance of the publication in which it appeared. As you say, wait and see.

Tim

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Carolina » Thu Jan 19, 2017 9:55 pm

mouche wrote:Well, you can't expect to have the cake and eat it too!


Well nearly 50% voted against it. While over 700,000 Brits living abroad for more than 15 years were not allowed to vote. Hardly cake and eating it.

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Carolina » Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:03 pm

Yes, it's still a wait and see. Not intending to get into the ins an outs of Brexit on this thread, this was just the latest on the EU health & residency rights and where it could be going after her speech yesterday.
"Theresa May has said her offer to guarantee the rights of EU citizens in the UK has been snubbed by “one or two” European leaders." linked in the above article. Direct link here https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... referendum

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Kilkis » Fri Jan 20, 2017 2:08 am

I think three points are worth noting:

    1 People from the UK will move to other EU countries to work and similarly people from the EU will move to the UK after Brexit. People have always moved from one country to another for centuries before the EU was ever thought of. The rules governing exactly who can move will change but movement will not stop. Reciprocal rights on healthcare and pensions are a critical issue in those people's lives. The EU has a very well thought out system of reciprocal rights in these areas so why not continue to make use of it?
    2 If the EU decides to expel all UK citizens living in the EU she cannot reciprocate by expelling all EU citizens living in the UK. If she did so the NHS would collapse overnight and many industries would have a major problem. Keeping it as a bargaining chip is an empty threat and the EU knows it.
    3 Whether UK citizens have the right to remain inside the EU after Brexit is not within Theresa May's gift but whether the UK will support its retired citizens who currently live in the EU with healthcare cover and protected pension rights is completely within her gift. Also it doesn't affect in any way her negotiating position with the EU. Saying she will protect healthcare cover and pension rights does not alter her ability to restrict residence rights for EU citizens if the EU decides to restrict such rights for UK citizens. If half a million UK citizens are forced to relocate back to the UK because she doesn't protect those rights she has gained half a million disgruntled voters who will still be the responsibility of the NHS. If they are forced to return because the EU has kicked them out at least they will blame the EU and thank her for trying to help them.

Warwick

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Kilkis » Fri Jan 20, 2017 10:25 am

mouche wrote:Well, you can't expect to have the cake and eat it too!


For the benefit of Mouche. When I was 16 I entered into a contract with the UK government. The terms of the contract were very simple: I would pay them a percentage of my salary for the whole of my working life and in return they would provide me with health cover for the whole of my natural life and they would also pay me a basic pension when I retired, provided I had reached a specified age. I didn't have any choice about entering into this contract. It was imposed on me by the government. I honoured my side of that contract 100 %. I even voluntarily paid them when I was no longer working in the UK until the government told me that I had paid sufficient and I could stop. I am now simply asking the government to honour their side of the contract. Could you explain to me, Mouche, how that can be classed as "wanting to have the cake and eat it too"?

Warwick

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby mouche » Fri Jan 20, 2017 10:52 am

Kilkis wrote:
mouche wrote: Could you explain to me, Mouche, how that can be classed as "wanting to have the cake and eat it too"?

Warwick


You opted for leaving the country, by your own choice I hope? If I decide (which I have actually done for a number of years but since moved back) to leave my native country for good I know the consequenses and can still decided to take my chances. Again, you can't have the cake and eat it too! And I don't expect to have a golden parachute! Heating allowance for living in a warm country and having left my native country for good and by my own choice? My foot!

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... r-24-years

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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby scooby » Fri Jan 20, 2017 1:51 pm

mouche wrote:
Kilkis wrote:
mouche wrote: Could you explain to me, Mouche, how that can be classed as "wanting to have the cake and eat it too"?

Warwick


You opted for leaving the country, by your own choice I hope? If I decide (which I have actually done for a number of years but since moved back) to leave my native country for good I know the consequenses and can still decided to take my chances. Again, you can't have the cake and eat it too! And I don't expect to have a golden parachute! Heating allowance for living in a warm country and having left my native country for good and by my own choice? My foot!

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... r-24-years
Your not Guy Verhofstadt in disguise are you? :shock:
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Re: Retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return?

Postby Kilkis » Fri Jan 20, 2017 1:59 pm

The western world endlessly criticised the Soviet Union and China for imposing travel restrictions on its citizens. They did it by refusing exit visas. The UK is now imposing travel restrictions on its citizens using economic sanctions. To you that is OK.

When I entered into a contract with the UK government all those years ago the contract did not say, "but only if you remain in the UK". To be precise I did not know the consequences when I left the UK to live in Greece. There were no consequences. The government is changing the rules and introducing consequences that were not there before. I accept that they cannot do anything about whether the EU decides to kick us all out but they can do something about honouring their own commitments.

Honouring a contract is not a golden parachute. It is honouring a contract. If you agreed to buy something from somebody and paid them the money but they then refused to give you the item would you describe asking for that item as wanting a golden parachute. When speaking In the UK houses of parliament it is the convention that members refer to other members as honourable/right honourable, e.g. "My honourable/right honourable friend" when referring to a member of their own party and "The honourable/right honourable gentleman/lady" when referring to a member of another party. I would suggest this convention is abandoned since they are demonstrating that they are not honourable since they don't honour commitments.

The winter fuel allowance is a different issue. There are two such allowances in the UK:

    1 The first is given to everybody over a certain age whatever the weather conditions are. It doesn't matter if the UK experiences a cold winter or an exceptionally mild winter. It was introduced in recognition of the fact that the cost of energy was rising faster than general inflation and old people, on average, spend a bigger proportion of their income on energy. It is an allowance based on economics not on temperature.
    2 The second allowance is paid if the temperature in a certain area falls below a defined threshold for a specified period of time.

People living abroad have never qualified for this second allowance. I have no problem with the UK withdrawing the first allowance for people living abroad but they should have done it on an economic basis not a temperature basis. They should have assessed the typical energy costs for each country compared to the UK and kept or withdrawn the allowance on that basis. For example I will burn less oil to heat my house than an equivalent person in the UK but I pay double the price for the oil in Greece. I would also have no objection to the allowance being means tested so that people over a certain income would not qualify. Clearly it is an allowance to help people who cannot afford their energy costs so people who can afford them don't need it. A final point but even people living here on a basic UK state pension would not be forced to relocate back to the UK because the small winter fuel allowance was withdrawn. Withdrawal of health care is a different ball game.

Warwick


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