Economic citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis
One should begin with the fact, that, from a legal viewpoint, dual citizenship and second citizenship are two different notions! The notion of dual citizenship is a particular case of multiple citizenship. The international law defines the “dual citizenship” notion as a person simultaneously having a citizenship (or patriality – if the state leader is not a president, but a monarch) of two or more states. For instance, Russians are not prohibited from having a second citizenship and a second passport; yet, the holders of two or even several citizenships are not considered as “dual citizens” by the Russian authorities within the territory of Russian Federation.
Having acquired the second citizenship and the passport of Saint Kitts and Nevis, you are not obliged to live or work on the islands; however, if you wish, you have every right to do so. You also do not need to pay taxes in the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis on the property, which is located abroad, and on the income gained from foreign sources, as well as income tax, capital gain tax, wealth tax or inheritance tax, as the Federation does not lay any claim to you paying any taxes in its favor.
The children of economic citizens inherit the right to receive the citizenship of Saint Kitts and Nevis, as well as the real property near the sea purchased by their parents. The citizenship of the Member State of the British Commonwealth of Nations provides children with an opportunity to receive grants for education, as well as benefits, which are provided by the Member States to the citizens of the Commonwealth.
The Federation passport allows crossing the borders of 126 countries, including all countries of Schengen agreement, Great Britain, Canada, Caribbean countries, countries of the British Commonwealth of Nations, as well as such famous international financial centers and centers of international banking, as Hong Kong, Panama, Monaco, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, Gibraltar and Mauritius, without a visa. Although the United States of America are not included in this list, as a rule, the Federation passport holders are issued a long-term USA visa for a term of 10 years.
The Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis is situated on the Leeward Islands of West-Indies, and unites the islands of Saint Kitts and Nevis, although both states have separate and different corporate and trust legislation. The program of citizenship acquisition by investments in Saint Kitts and Nevis was founded in 1984. To this day, this is the most stable and respected program of citizenship acquisition by investments in the world. This program is aimed at the elite of the international community. It provides wealthy people from all around the world with a magnificent opportunity of the reliable and tax-free second citizenship and the opportunity to live on the Caribbean Islands, as well as visa-free traveling throughout the Schengen zone and many countries of the British Commonwealth of Nations.
The citizenship of Saint Kitts and Nevis is issued for life. You can renew your passport after all the pages are filled out with visa stamps, or after the period of passport validity expires. Passports are issued to underage children for a term of five years, and to adults – for a term of ten years. You can keep your second citizenship, as the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis Islands does not have a requirement to renounce your second citizenship. Upon conferment of the citizenship, the Federation authorities do not notify the country of the initial citizenship of the Applicant, and the data are not published anywhere. The children and grandchildren, who will be born after you acquire economic citizenship, will have birthright for citizenship.
Certainly, the program of acquisition of second citizenship by investments on the Saint Kitts and Nevis Islands is thoroughly regulated by the 1984 law on citizenship of the Saint Kitts and Nevis Islands. All applicants to the second citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis are verified for the purpose of absence of record of criminal convictions; they must also present letters of recommendation from bankers and solicitors.
There are two methods of acquisition of the citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis:
1. the first method – contributions in the Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis (S.I.D.F., this program does not envisage the return of investments).
The Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation is a non-governmental charity organization, which was founded to help the workers of the sugar industry of the islands. Financial assistance in the form of charitable contributions helps its development. An investor must make a charitable donation in the amount of:
USD 250,000 for the sole applicant for the second citizenship;
USD 300,000 for the family with the number of dependents of up to four people;
USD 350,000 for the family with the number of dependents of up to five people;
USD 450,000 for the family with the number of dependents of up to seven people;
USD 50,000 for every additional dependent, if their number is more than seven people, as well as in case the investor’s dependents are more than 18 years old.
Before transferring the investments, the applicant must transfer the fee for verification of information about his personality (the so-called due diligence fee) to the account of the Citizenship by Investment Unit. The payment is made through a licensed agent, who is authorized by the Citizenship by Investment Unit to carry out the execution of applications on the acquisition of economic citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, as well as for concurrent activities. The payment of subsidy is made after receiving a letter from the agency dealing with citizenship by investment, which approves the applicant to the citizenship. The subsidy is transferred to escrow account of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. The resources are transferred to the state account after the investor receives the citizenship and the passport.
The payment, which the government collects for due diligence, amounts to USD 7500 for the main applicant and USD 4000 for each dependent aged over sixteen. The verification is not made through state channels, but is carried out by an independent international detective agency. Which is why, additional payment must be made for the verification.
In this case, payment for application review and all the duties are included in the main contribution. An investment in the Sugar Foundation must only be made after the preliminary agreement of the government of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. An investment in the Sugar Foundation of the Federation is actually a subsidy and is non-refundable in case of issue of the citizenship and the second passport of Saint Kitts and Nevis.
This method of investment is suitable for the persons, which require a passport as quickly as possible. By choosing this option, you will reduce your final expenses, but remain without real property on the paradise island and without an opportunity to regain the resources spent on the citizenship acquisition.
2. The second method is an investment in the real property approved by the Federation, in order to acquire the citizenship by investment (envisages the investment return after five years).
The government of the Federation sees tourism as the future basis of economics. In order to develop it, the government creates magnificent infrastructure, ensures high level of service and offers the citizenship acquisition program by investing in elite resort real property. If you are thinking about spending the decline of your life on a paradise island, then maybe, the option of purchasing real property on Saint Kitts or Nevis islands will be a reasonable choice for you. The investments in real property provide an opportunity to return the costs invested in the acquisition of the second passport. The fact is that elite resorts are constructed both on the Saint Kitts Island and on the Nevis Island. The government spends part of the resources from the Sugar Foundation to construct resorts with state participation. At the same time, resources from this foundation are spent on advertising and promoting the islands as an elite golfing and eco – destination in the major worldwide airports. The hotels of such networks as Four Seasons, Marriott, Hyatt, which also attract tourists through their networks, are built and are being built on the island.
In the beginning of the real property acquisition procedure, the investor must conclude a real property reservation contract with the developer, and its minimal cost must amount to USD 400 000, regardless of whether the investment is made in the real property on the Saint Kitts island or on the Nevis island. As soon as the contract is signed and the developer has received initial deposit in the amount of 10% of the total amount, or, in some projects, in the amount of USD 10 000, the investor may submit an application on citizenship acquisition. The investment must be made in the real property object, which is approved by the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. Investments in the purchase of land are not accepted. The Christophe Harbour project is an exception. It is located in the south-eastern part of the Saint Kitts Island. The minimal land cost in the project amounts to USD 700 000.
The citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis can also be granted through major investments in real property with the cost, which exceeds USD 1 000 000. However, such applications must be approved by the Federal Minister Cabinet.
If you wish to visit the islands in order to choose real property, please contact us for planning the visit, and our professionals will be glad to show you the approved real property in the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis.
When choosing this investment method, in order to acquire the Federation citizenship, additional state duties are to be paid:
USD 50,000 for the main applicant for citizenship;
USD 25,000 for a spouse;
USD 25,000 for every child aged up to 18;
USD 50,000 – payment for a single and unemployed child aged 18 to 25, for a student of a higher educational institution* and for parents aged over 65.
* In case a child is a disabled person and completely depends on parents, his application may be accepted as part of the general family application, regardless of age.
The payment, which the government collects for due diligence, amounts to USD 7,500 for the main applicant and USD 4000 for each dependent aged over sixteen.
As soon as the candidature of the investor and the application are approved by the Citizenship by Investment Unit of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, money must be transferred to the account of the government, and the remaining cost of the real property must be transferred to the escrow account of the developer.
Real property objects may be rented. The majority of developers offer to manage putting a real property object into commission. There are projects, which guarantee income in the amount of 4% of the real property cost. The only limitation is that the real property cannot be put up for sale until five years have passed from its purchase. The violation of this requirement is fraught with loss of the citizenship of Saint Kitts and Nevis. In 2012, amendments to the law on citizenship by investments came into force. Upon expiry of the five-year period, the real property may be sold, and the new owner may submit an application on acquisition of the second citizenship; before these amendments came into force, the real property, which was once used in the program, could not be used repeatedly.
Amendments to the law on citizenship, which came into force in 2012, allow two or more investors, who own one and the same real property, to apply for acquisition of citizenship of the Federation, provided that each applicant pays the required USD 400 000. This is called fractional ownership of real property, and many developers offer this excellent investment option as an addition to the classical method. One object can be in the ownership of several investors, who have guaranteed time of residence in the object; as a matter of actual practice, the price of fractional ownership includes all the expenses of real property ownership during 5 years of compulsory ownership, and there is an opportunity to gain income from renting the object.
General review terms for documents on citizenship acquisition
The entire term for document review and for adoption of a decision concerning conferment of citizenship by the Government of the Federation, after submitting documents and then passports, is 3-4 months.
The citizenship is provided as may seem expedient to the government of Saint Kitts and Nevis – the applicants are refused, when detective and legal verification conducted by the Citizenship by Investment Unit discovers false information or presence of record of convictions with reference to the applicant.
The applicant does not need to visit Saint Kitts and Nevis to conduct the interview. However, a visit is recommended in case of purchasing real property with the objective of citizenship acquisition. In rare cases related to the applicant’s past, the applicant MIGHT BE ASKED to come to an interview with a government official.
The passport may be issued, after the Prime Minister approves the application on citizenship acquisition, and after the applicant receives the Naturalization Certificate, which confirms the citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis.
As of January 2012, the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis began issuing new Biometric passports. A special RFID chip, which is built in the document, contains information on the holder – name, sex, date of birth, as well as an electronic photo. The biometric passports of other countries contain fingerprints and an image of the iridial part of retina. Passports of Saint Kitts and Nevis, on the other hand, will only store basic required information. The implementation of such kind of passports allows increasing information protection, and reduces the likelihood of document forgery.
Although the passports can sometimes be issued immediately after acquiring the citizenship, as a rule, they are issued in 1-2 weeks after conferment of the citizenship. Limited Liability Company “ABLEX” will deliver the passport through courier delivery to the place indicated by the client.
Cost of the consultative services of the “ABLEX” company
Pursuant to the legislation of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, applications from the applicants to the acquisition of the citizenship of the Federation must be submitted on their behalf by a registered and licensed state agent. Limited Liability Company “ABLEX” is a direct partner of the licensed and authorized agent of the Citizenship by Investment Unit in the program of Economic Citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. Submission of the application on citizenship acquisition is a labor-intensive procedure, and requires legal analysis. Our professional consultants have indispensable experience of work in the sphere of acquisition of citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. They are ready to assist you in the correct preparation of the corresponding documentation for submission, in the evaluation of chances of citizenship acquisition, and, should such necessity arise – in the correction of the prepared documents. If you apply directly to the Limited Liability Company “ABLEX” for professional consultative assistance in the acquisition of citizenship of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, you will spend as much money, as you could have spent by applying to the head office of the company of the licensed and authorized agent of the Citizenship by Investment Unit in the program of Economic Citizenship on the Saint Kitts and Nevis islands; whereupon, you will be provided with a personal agent. As a result, the operational efficiency of information exchange will be high, and the chances of your application being accepted will be very close to one hundred percent.
The costs of consultative services of the “ABLEX” company are USD 20 000 for one person and USD 25 000 for a family.
The payment for professional services may be returned in the amount of 50%, in case the citizenship was refused to the applicant, provided that all the questionnaires and the information for conducting due diligence, which were presented by the investor-applicant, are authentic. The payment for professional services will not be returned, if the information, which the applicant has submitted in questionnaires or documents for carrying out due diligence, is considered to be counterfeited, false or misleading.
Payment of the governmental application duties, payment for due diligence, as well as payment for application review is carried out through the Limited Liability Company “ABLEX”.
The main contribution to the Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation must be made directly to the government of Saint Kitts and Nevis. Resources for purchasing the real property are transferred directly to the seller/developer or to the escrow account of the project.
Contact us, and we will provide you with the answers to the questions, which came into existence, clarify the order, in which the application is submitted, as well as provide the list of documents for acquiring the citizenship and the second passport of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis.