Caribbean Citizenship By Investment Prices DOUBLING: How Can I Apply Before the Deadline?

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Big news from the Caribbean citizenship by investment programs!

Four of five nations will effectively hike prices to $200,000 USD and harmonize application management, due diligence practices, and citizenship and investment standards by June 30, 2024.

Antigua & Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, and St. Kitts & Nevis all signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) earlier this year to align processes and agree on uniform prices across the region.

(One nation and program, St. Lucia, however, is still notably missing – with no timetable for agreement. Meaning their citizenship by investment threshold remains relatively low.)

Why is this big news?

Well, the Caribbean citizenship by investment programs offer applicants extensive visa-free travel around the world, residency rights in several countries in the Caribbean, and potential tax reduction benefits. Furthermore, their programs are the most affordable in the world.

But by June 30, four of five programs’ prices will double.

You still have time to apply to each program while costs remain relatively low. Here’s what to prioritize in case you want to get your application in under the wire:

Overview of Required Documents

Securing citizenship in any nation, including the Caribbean nations, usually requires a slew of documents – including but not limited to …

  • Current valid passport
  • Birth certificate
  • Police record
  • Medical check
  • Proof of address
  • Marriage certificate
  • Citizenship application
  • And more

Because document collection can delay the rest of the process, applicants should prioritize this activity well in advance of submission. Below are the documents you should prioritize in order to speed up the process and apply to a Caribbean citizenship program before prices increase this summer:

Criminal Record & Police Reports

One critical component of citizenship applications is a criminal record and police reports. Please note in some cases an application for citizenship by investment can be submitted without the criminal record check if it is taking too long to obtain the police clearance report. 

Generally, the citizenship by investment unit (CIU) needs police records from any country where the applicant has resided for six or more months in the last ten years. These documents serve as a background check, ensuring that the potential new citizens meet the security standards of the host country.

With external pressure from the United States and the European Union, Caribbean CIUs are scrutinizing applicants’ backgrounds more heavily than ever before. Why? These world powers fear citizenship acquired by individuals with malicious intent.

This is also the reason several Caribbean CIUs have banned certain nationalities (e.g. Russia, Belarus, North Korea) from applying for citizenship by investment in their programs.

Criminal Record & Police Reports

Obtaining police reports can be a lengthy process, often taking weeks or even months, depending on the country. And, this process can be even longer if you are not physically present in the respective country or require documents to be mailed.

Therefore, individuals should request these reports each of their applicable jurisdictions at the earliest opportunity possible. 

Medical Check

In addition to police reports, several Caribbean countries’ programs require a comprehensive medical examination of applicants and their dependents.

This check confirms the applicant does not carry any infectious diseases and is in good health. The specifics of the medical examination can vary slightly between programs, but generally, they include …

  • A medical examination form 
  • Blood tests (HIV test) 

Again, depending on your current country of residence and healthcare system, this process can be lengthy. So we recommend to clients that they schedule their medical check appointment as soon as possible to then receive and send the results quickly.

Delays in securing appointments or in the processing of the medical results can extend the timeline for application submission beyond the intended deadline.

Necessity of Apostilles

For documents sourced from countries that are part of the Hague Apostille Convention, an apostille is required to verify the authenticity of public documents. This process is similar to notarization but is particularly useful in international translation and transfer.

Common documents requiring apostilles in CIP applications include birth certificates, marriage certificates, and passports.

Necessity of Apostilles

Good news for Canadian citizens worldwide. If you need documents apostilled in Canada, the process recently became a lot easier. In January 2024, Canada joined the Hague Apostille Convention, which means that Canadian apostilled documents are now accepted by 120 other Convention signatory states. Before joining the Convention, Canadian-sourced documents had to be individually authenticated in each of the jurisdictions where they were transferred.

Acquiring an apostille can be straightforward but may be time-consuming depending on the document and the country. In addition to sourcing the actual, physical document, applicants need to contact their designated authority – often the state or provincial secretary in the country where the document was issued – to notarize and apostille it.

We recommend clients gather their apostilled documents (if necessary) – just as the obligatory background check, police records, and medical check – as soon as possible.

General Tips for a Smooth Application Process

JH Marlin has helped hundreds of high-net-worth individuals apply for and successfully obtain a second citizenship, mostly in the Caribbean citizenship programs than any other.

We have seen processes delayed for several reasons, but the most common is procrastination and miscommunication.

To avoid delays and ensure a smooth, efficient application process, we advise applicants to check all documents for accuracy and completeness, of course. Names and other information must be consistent across all documents. Document discrepancies can lead to delays or rejections.

But more importantly, we recommend starting the document collection process as soon as possible to account for any unforeseen events in the application process.

This is why working with a certified lawyer, agent, and consultant on-the-ground here in the Caribbean can greatly improve the efficiency of your application process. We are familiar with the nuances of each program, work with the respective citizenship by investment government unit, and can provide invaluable guidance, gathered from our experience and contacts.

So before the deadline for new pricing in Caribbean citizenship programs passes, you can still get your application to Antigua & Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, and St. Kitts & Nevis in (and non-signatory St. Lucia too). And we can help.

The benefit of these programs goes beyond just a second citizenship in your asset portfolio. Caribbean citizenship can offer more visa-free travel access and mobility around the world, more privacy in banking and investing, more residence options (OECS/CARICOM residency rights agreement), and potential tax reduction opportunities.

If you’re interested in getting a second citizenship or exploring your options in the Caribbean, JH Marlin has helped hundreds of high-net-worth individuals become more free and increase their optionality with a passport portfolio.

Contact us here to get started.

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