Citizenship by investment programs have gained significant traction in recent years, offering foreign nationals and their families a unique pathway to citizenship in various nations, including beautiful Caribbean countries like St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, and Antigua. These programs allow foreign investors to become citizens or gain permanent residence through an investment in the host country.
Are you considering obtaining citizenship through investment? Well, the good news is that your family members may also be eligible for citizenship through the same investment. This article provides you with all the information you need to know about the eligibility requirements, documentation needed, and financial obligations for your spouse and children and possible other family members to be included in an application for citizenship.
Can economic citizenship be transferred to family members?
In a family-based immigration system, family members can obtain citizenship through the same investment as the principal applicant. Spouses and minor children can become dependents and benefit from the same investment. Sometimes, even dependent family members like parents and siblings can also be included. To establish proof of relationship, the principal applicant must use official documents like birth certificates or adoption papers.
It is important to note that the age restrictions for dependent children vary depending on the country where the foreign investment is made. If you wish to learn more about which program is the best for you and your family, consult with an expert immigration lawyer. Not only can they help you make an informed decision about what dual citizenship to pursue, but they can also guide you and provide valuable assistance throughout the processing and approval of your citizenship.
Eligibility Requirements for Family Members
One of the major draws of citizenship by investment programs is the opportunity for family members to obtain citizenship alongside the primary investor. To be eligible, your family members need to meet certain criteria set by the government.
These usually include age restrictions for dependent children or proof of a genuine relationship for spouses. Every citizenship by investment program has its own specific requirements and contribution amounts for family applicants vary. Therefore, it is crucial to thoroughly understand the eligibility criteria before applying.
Spouse and Children as Dependents
By including your family as dependents, you ensure that you can stay together and enjoy all the benefits of becoming citizens. Spouses are typically considered primary dependents, allowing them to apply for citizenship simultaneously with the principal investor. Children can also be included as dependents in most cases, provided they meet certain age criteria or financial dependency criteria.
Age Restrictions for Children
Generally, minor children under 18 years old are eligible to be included in your application as dependents. However, it’s important to note that some programs may have different age limits or additional criteria for dependent children. Some programs allow financially dependent children below the age of 30 to be included in an appliction for citizenship.
Caribbean countries like St. Kitts & Nevis often specify age restrictions for dependent children, usually requiring them to be under 25 years old at the time of application and be enrolled in school. Some programs extend this age limit to under 30 under certain conditions, such as if the child is financially dependent on the main applicant or spouse. A legal expert can help you better understand how to provide citizenship to your dependent children.
Proof of Relationship Documentation
To establish the family relationship, applicants are usually required to submit official proof of relationship documentation, such as marriage certificates and birth certificates, accompanied by certified translations if necessary. Birth certificates serve as evidence of biological relationships between parents and children, while adoption papers establish legal parent-child relationships. These citizenship documents play a vital role in verifying the familial ties necessary for obtaining citizenship through an investment program.
Financial Requirements for Family Members
The specific financial requirements for family members vary depending on the context of your investment and the country in which you are applying for citizenship. Citizenship by Investment can be acquired through one of these methods:
- Contributing to National Development: Many countries with citizenship by investment programs offer options for applicants to contribute directly to national development projects. The contribution amount typically varies based on the program’s regulations and the number of family members included in the application.
- Real Estate Investment Option: The real estate option allows applicants to invest in approved real estate properties. The selected property can serve both as an investment and a potential future residence.
- Entrepreneurial and Business Ventures: Some countries provide a unique path for immigrant investors to become citizens by establishing or investing in businesses. This method encourages economic growth and job creation, aligning with the host country’s employment goals.
- Government Bonds and Funds: A less hands-on approach involves investing in government-approved bonds or funds. This allows applicants to contribute to the country’s development while minimizing direct involvement in business operations or real estate transactions. The investment is often held for a specified period of time before citizenship is granted.
It is crucial to consult with an immigration lawyer who can guide you through this process and provide guidance on meeting these financial requirements.
Processing Time for Family Members’ Applications
Once you have decided to obtain citizenship through investment, it is important to understand how the application process works for your loved ones. The processing time for family members’ applications is typically aligned with that of the principal applicant, ensuring a cohesive and streamlined process for the entire family unit.
It is essential to ensure that all applications are submitted together. This helps streamline the process and guarantees that everyone’s applications are reviewed simultaneously. By submitting all the necessary documents and information at once, you can avoid any delays or complications that may arise from individual submissions. In many instances, if you are applying as a family, all family members must submit their documents all at once.
Inclusion of Extended Family Members
While immediate family members are commonly included, extended family members such as siblings and grandparents are generally not eligible (with the exception of a few programs) for inclusion in citizenship by investment programs. However, they might be eligible for different types of visa options or residence permits.
Some countries do allow for the inclusion of extended family members in the application process. This means that not only can your spouse and children be included, but also parents, siblings, and even grandparents. By including them in your application, they too can reap the benefits of obtaining citizenship through the same investment. Foreign investors interested in extending citizenship to their entire family can count on the services of a legal expert to make their goal a reality.
Benefits and Rights for Family Members
Once approved, family members enjoy the same benefits and rights as the principal investor.
Equal Rights and Privileges
Your family members are granted equal rights and privileges as any citizen of the host nation. They can fully partake in the social, cultural, and economic fabric of the country, ensuring a seamless integration into their new surroundings.
Freedom to Reside and Work
Citizenship offers the freedom to reside and work within the country without constraints. By undertaking a golden visa program for citizenship, your family members can choose to live where their hearts desire and pursue employment opportunities that align with their skills and aspirations.
Access to Healthcare and Education
With citizenship, your family gains access to quality healthcare services and educational institutions within the host country.
Citizenship presents an array of travel options. Your family members can travel freely to other countries, enjoying the benefits of visa-free or visa-on-arrival arrangements that the host country may have established.
Security and Stability
The newly acquired citizenship offers a secure and stable environment for your family. This is particularly appealing in comparison to uncertainties that may exist in their country of origin or country of citizenship.
Real Estate and Property Ownership
Citizenship provides the option to invest in real estate properties, granting your family the ability to own homes or commercial spaces within the host country.
Ability to Pass on Citizenship via Descent
Some citizenship by investment programs allow you to pass on the citizenship to future generations by descent.
Access to Citizenship by Naturalization
In the future, if your family desires to expand their horizons further, they may be eligible to apply for citizenship in other territories through the process of citizenship by naturalization. This showcases the enduring nature of their connection to the host country.
Obtain Citizenship By Investment For You and Your Family
Citizenship by investment is an avenue to grant your family a life rich in opportunities and prospects. As they enjoy equal rights, the freedom to reside and work, access to healthcare and education, travel privileges, and more, their lives are enriched by the numerous benefits that citizenship provides.
At JH Marlin, we are ready to help you broaden your horizons. By working together, we can ensure a seamless economic citizenship approval for you and your loved ones. Contact us to learn about the various citizenship by investment and golden visa programs available. We can help you decide which option is the best for your current situation and guide you throughout the entire process.