Citizenship in Saint-Kitts and Nevis
In this article we shall focus on the oldest second citizenship by investment program in the world – Saint-Kitts & Nevis. The program was established in 1984. Regulations regarding citizenship-by-investment are contained in Part II, Section 3 (5) of the Citizenship Act, 1984. After amendments and effective from April 2018, the two following investment options eligible for citizenship applications are available:
- Real Estate Investment The minimum real estate investment required by law is USD 200,000 (resalable after 7 years) or USD 400,000 (resalable after 5 years) for each main applicant. Investor must also be ready to pay non-refundable government fees USD 35,000 per principal applicant, USD 20,000 per spouse, and USD 10,000 per each dependent child. It is easy to calculate that for a family of four members it makes USD 75,000 of non-refundable expenses. The important condition of real estate option is that you cannot sell your property during the first five years after the purchase without losing citizenship. If you sell your property before 5 or 7 years are expired, citizenship will be revoked.
- The Sustainable Growth Fund option requires non-refundable contribution (donation) of USD 150,000 for a single applicant or USD 195,000 for a family of 4 members. Additional family members regardless of age will be expected to pay USD 10,000 each. All the others government fees with the exception of due diligence fees are included.
In addition to the expenses above, under both real estate and fund options, investor must also pay due diligence fee USD 7,500 per principal applicant and USD 4,000 per his spouse or each person over 16 years of age.
Advantages of Saint-Kitts and Nevis Citizenship
- Visa-free travel. St.-Kitts & Nevis citizens have visa-free or visa on arrival access to 152 countries and territories, including Schengen Area (27 European countries), the United Kingdom, Russia, and many others.
- Dual citizenship is recognized in Saint-Kitts and Nevis. You do not need to renounce your previous citizenship.
- You have the right to take up residence in Saint-Kitts and Nevis or in any other CARICOM-country at any time and for any length of time.
- You are not liable for global taxation, if you live outside Saint-Kitts.
- You are not liable for global taxation, if you decide to relocate and live in Saint-Kitts and Nevis, as there are no direct taxes whatsoever.
- As a citizen of British Commonwealth of Nations, you receive certain preferential treatment in the United Kingdom and other countries of the Commonwealth.
- Heavenly climate in a tropical paradise of Saint-Kitts and Nevis.
Summary of St. Kitts & Nevis Citizenship Law
For those who are not investors but are interested in Citizenship Law of St. Kitts and Nevis here is a brief summary of law. Citizenship laws are based upon the Constitution of St. Kitts and Nevis. Categories of citizenship are divided by the date of independence, September 19, 1983. Citizenship of St. Kitts by birth: Child of unknown parents is granted citizenship. Persons born before September 19, 1983: Birth within the territory of St. Kitts and Nevis does not automatically confer citizenship. Person born on or after September 19, 1983: Child born in the territory of St. Kitts and Nevis, regardless of the citizenship of the parents. Citizenship of St. Kitts by descent: Person born before September 19, 1983: Any person living in St. Kitts, who was at that time a British Dependent Territory Citizen (BDTC) or a British Citizen was eligible for citizenship St. Kitts. Their child born abroad or adopted. Their foreign national spouse. Persons born on or after September 19, 1983: Child born abroad, at least one of whose parents was a citizen of St. Kitts and Nevis. Citizenship of St. Kitts by naturalization – information was not provided. Dual citizenship is recognized. Person seeking citizenship of St. Kitts is not required to renounce previous citizenship. Loss of citizenship: Voluntary renunciation of citizenship is permitted by law. Letter of renunciation must be sent to the Attorney General of St. Kitts. Contact the Embassy for proper procedures concerning letter of renunciation. The following are grounds for involuntary loss of naturalized citizenship of St. Kitts: Person’s naturalized citizenship was obtained by fraud, false representation, or willful concealment of information. Person commits act of treason against the government.
Citizenship-by-investment in other countries
Nowadays there are five countries in the Caribbean (St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, Dominica, Grenada, and Antigua & Barbuda) that officially allow foreigners obtaining citizenship by investment in a reasonably short period of time. Three other countries that offer citizenship by investment are located in Europe (Montenegro, Bulgaria, and Malta).
There are some other countries in EU (for instance, Austria, Bulgaria, Slovakia, etc.) that allow obtaining citizenship “by special merits” or “by special contribution” into economy. But in these states the concrete amount of investment or donation that is appropriate and good for second citizenship purpose is not specified. Consequently, decisions are made on case-by-case basis and there is a risk of investing money without getting citizenship due to subjective factor. These programs are not “citizenship by investment programs” in the strict sense of the wording.
If you have any question regarding above-mentioned material or wish to use our legal assistance in obtaining second citizenship and passport of St. Kitts & Nevis, contact us today. When you send us an e-mail, please, indicate your citizenship, country of residence, and age of every family member to be included into application. Then we shall be able to calculate the fees and expenses applicable in your case.
Last updated 05.11.2021