I left the U.S. to live and work in Berlin, Germany. I arrived 5 days ago. On the German side, everything is well organized, and moving along.

However until now, I hadn't reflected on which U.S. agencies, if any, I need to inform about my re-location abroad. I just found someone to take over my lease, and forwarded my mail to a relative, and left.

What U.S. agencies should I inform, if any, that I left the U.S. to live abroad?

So far all I've found is that I should inform the IRS that my address has changed -- presumably, I would provide them with my new German address, not a state-side relative's, but I'm working on confirming this.

Am I supposed to inform anyone else? It seems too easy, to just leave. Surely it's harder than this?

  • Probably a US Embassy would be the best if not the only agency.
    – Karlson
    Nov 23, 2015 at 18:26
  • 1
    Why do you expect it to be harder? The US is the land of the free. It is very different from Germany. If you expect it to be too similar, you are in for a big surprise. For example, it is illegal in Germany to insult people, including the police. See law.stackexchange.com/questions/3989/implied-insults.
    – phoog
    Nov 23, 2015 at 18:57

1 Answer 1


There is no need to inform anyone, other than to keep correspondents such as the IRS informed of your mailing address.

You can register with the state department. This is voluntary, and is available to all travelers, not just those who move abroad. See https://step.state.gov/step/.

If you wish to vote by absentee ballot, you'll need to register with the state you last lived in before you left the country. See http://www.fvap.gov.

When I lived abroad, I leaned of both of these programs from the US consulate in my city, so Karlson's comment is a good one. The consulate or the embassy's consular section will be a good source of information about US government programs for citizens living abroad.

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