Your summer trip to France was fantastic (even if you lost a bag or two at Charles de Gaulle) and now that you’re back, you want to find a way to spend more time there.

Whether you’re considering the digital nomad lifestyle or buying that €1 villa, this article is for you.

As advisors, we tend to draw on our personal experience as we help to develop strategies and plans with our clients. My personal life straddles multiple countries (most directly France and the US) and I’ve come to more fully appreciate the complications and rewards of living a cross-border life.

Our role is to help you (regardless of how many locations you touch) navigate any issues with the right team of experts and ensure effective coordination and execution of all the various moving parts. This becomes even more critical as you cross borders with different legal/ tax systems and add in the complexities of different procedures, deadlines, languages, etc.

To start the brainstorming exercise around spending more time abroad, we’ve posed a few questions to help guide your thinking (and also included some notes of caution about where your answers may take you!)

If you’re committed to developing a plan for spending more time abroad, we also offer a few words of caution:

It’s not better to act now and ask questions later: the penalties for non-compliance with various laws/ procedures can be particularly severe with cross-border issues.

Be careful about making assumptions about the process (literally any assumptions): Just because it works one way in one area or country does not mean it works that way anywhere else.

Get the right advice: We believe it’s critical to work with advisors who are experienced working with cross-border issues. It’s important that any such advisor is not afraid to ask even basic questions (given potential fundamental differences between jurisdictions – such as the legal code or inheritance laws). When we are involved in these situations, our aim is not only to get the right advisors on the team (immigration, tax, estate, accounting, etc.), but also to ensure that these advisors are communicating and executing in lock step on a coordinated plan.

Be patient and open-minded: You should expect increased costs, complications and delays when you add a cross-border element to your life. But for many (including me personally), the reward is well worth it!

Read PDF here.

To learn more about Michelle H. Soufan, CFP®, Senior Wealth Advisor, click here.

This report is the confidential work product of Ballentine Partners. Unauthorized distribution of this material is strictly prohibited. The information in this report is deemed to be reliable. Some of the conclusions in this report are intended to be generalizations. The specific circumstances of an individual’s situation may require advice that is different from that reflected in this report. Furthermore, the advice reflected in this report is based on our opinion, and our opinion may change as new information becomes available. Nothing in this presentation should be construed as an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy any securities. You should read the prospectus or offering memo before making any investment. You are solely responsible for any decision to invest in a private offering. The investment recommendations contained in this document may not prove to be profitable, and the actual performance of any investment may not be as favorable as the expectations that are expressed in this document. There is no guarantee that the past performance of any investment will continue in the future.