Monday, 2 November 2009

Year 2 Day 33: Pesky Immigrant

Oh trust that I am completely referring to myself here. I am the immigrant in question -- although it's open to interpretation just how "pesky" I am. Feel free to keep that to yourself, though. It's all apparently about entitlement...and I don't seem to have much at the moment.

Today was a very productive day in my opinion. I made loads of phone calls and I've nearly narrowed down and mapped out a budget and plan for once bunny is here. It's common sense that things will change and there will be expenses that weren't necessary before, so I'm trying my best to get things in order now so I won't be running around like a headless chicken whilst in labour...or worse, a fatigued headless chicken once he IS here and has achieved our mutual goal of  'outside baby' status.

One item on the agenda was good ole Child Benefit -- a mere £20/week 'social security' payment to the parent/guardian for the eldest child under 16 (which I believe was initiated to help supplement cost of care for working parents, or something of that nature). Since I am a foreigner and my immigration status does not allow me access to certain funds, I am limited to what I have permission to claim for that for a typical British Citizen or person with "settled" status might otherwise be privy to and Child Benefit is one of them. The frustrating bit is that this all seems down to the luck of the draw on my geographical location at birth (my own birth, that is). Luckily for us, Matt can still claim for have no fear, UK-Yanks! Your British counterparts still have your back!

To further explain a bit, however, America, despite having such a good relationship with Britain, is not part of the EU or EEA which means we lose out on certain rights that I might otherwise have if I were from New Zealand or even Canada in some cases. It really doesn't make sense to me. But I will refrain from jumping on a soap-box about fairness and how much more illegal immigrants seem to be entitled to.

(Even if I am lawfully employed and contributing to society rather than on my rump on the dole and have forked over a crap-ton of dosh to the government for the 'right' to be here)

Yeah, I'm done now. I'll stop.

Still, you gotta like how I'm not bitter about it. Right?


Christine said...

Is that my Facebook you are stalking or do you know another Chris... lol

Meg said...

Haha...I didn't notice that. It was another Christine that I was looking at some new pics she had posted of her little one. Ironically though, she's a UKY'er too.

Christina said...

Hello, a third (also UK'er) Christina here, I think! I commented awhile ago, I'm the one from the SE/Solihull side of things.

I'm right about the 22 week mark... Interesting topic - I was thinking that I'd have access to the child benefit, but not the Health In Pregnancy Grant, based on what I'd read on the .gov website, but maybe I was wrong??

Luckily (eventhough I do pay a hefty 7% or whatever to National Insurance and the like), DH is a local so it sounds like he'll be ablt to claim the CB. (It just feels like especially because I do pay in, I should be able to withdraw, right?)

What about the HIP Grant? Any expertise you can pass along?