There has been significant interest in a second passport via a second citizenship with the recent United Kingdom vote to exit the European Union. There is also continuing interest in the acquisition of an economic citizenship or dual passport for my international executives that depend on a stable and reliable passport to enable their travel between countries as part of their normal job.
For several years now the United States’ State Department has implemented the executive branch’s legislation providing that the United States passport can be electronically revoked without the individual’s knowledge. There are several scenarios that can lead to this revocation including the United States Treasury assessment of taxes exceeding $50,000 as well as a county within any of the 50 states reporting to the State Department that there are outstanding Child Support payments. Not only can the passport be electronically revoked, but the drivers license that would be critical for renting a vehicle from international airports to drive into the city for a meeting or from one country to another outside of the United States.
We represent these client dilemmas that seemed to occur when they are outside of the United States. One of our recent clients encountered an electronically revoked passport and was a high-earning executive, we will call him Robert, (which is not his real name) who had traveled to Denmark and his US passport allowed him to depart United States and clear customs and immigration in Denmark. When his business was completed, he was checking in at the Copenhagen International airport and was totally taken aback when the ticketing agent told him that there was a problem with his passport. What did that mean, “a problem with your passport”? That was all the information that the ticketing agent could tell Robert. This was a Sunday in Denmark and as is globally known there is no access to the United States Embassy to understand what happened to Robert’s passport, since the Embassy was closed. Also, American Embassy’s theory is that they communicate on a country-to-country level rather than embassy-to-citizen level. Our firm is active Seven days a week and was able to communicate with Robert. Within 48 hours we were able to get his passport revocation rescinded and Robert was able to continue to represent his employer as he flew onto Germany. We communicate with the State Department and U.S. Treasury on a frequent basis and utilize these communication channels to expedite these travel emergencies of our international clientele. We also recommend that, as an interim solution, Robert could have use his second passport to continue to represent his employer in Germany and continue on the United States wherein we would have then resolved his electronic revocation dilemma.
How do you get a second passport?
There are several ways you can obtain a second passport without losing your United States passport. If you obtain a second passport by claiming citizenship, the United States will compel you to surrender your United States passport. This is a frightening awakening which the law during the Reagan Administration. Fortunately, this surrendering of a United States passport and U.S. citizenship is no longer mandatory.
Here are some of the ways you can obtain a second passport:
1. Ireland has a legal pathway to a passport if you can prove that one of your parents or grandparents was born in Ireland;
2. England will allow you to apply for citizenship and passport if you have been a long-term resident in England.
3. Spain has a new program designed to attract foreigners with established entrepreneurial abilities and business plans designed to bring employment to Spanish citizens which then evolves into a Spanish passport which has the additional advantage of allowing you to travel freely through the EU member countries;
4. Many smaller countries, including Malta an EU member, to issue citizenship and passports for economic investments into their country which then would allow you to freely travel throughout the EU.
We can advise and assist you in the options as well as guiding you through the process for a second passport and citizenship.
Here are the 10 steps in obtaining a second passport and an alternative citizenship:
Make the decision to obtain the alternative citizenship by choosing the program that best suits your needs and financial abilities.
Enter into a contract with an authorized agent in the foreign country that we will review with you.
The authorized agent will submit the application for you to the governmental authority.
We will work closely with you and the agent to complete the application forms and gather the relevant bonafide documents.
The governmental agency is in receipt of your Application and begins their vigorous due diligence background checks.
The government units, upon finding the Application to be complete and the background check satisfactory, moves the paperwork to the Executive Branch of the government for review and approval.
If you obtain an economic citizenship and passport, you will be required to make a financial contribution or investment in real property located in that country.
You will receive an official letter initially approving the application subject to a final approval.
You will receive a Certificate of Naturalization and Registration indicating that you have become a citizen of that country and the agent will now apply for your passport on your behalf that may take several months.
You receive your new internationally recognized passport and can travel freely without the worry of losing your job because you cannot travel internationally.
If you feel that any part of the above situations may apply to you, your lifestyle and your working environment, give me a call so we can discuss realistic resolutions that will secure your international career and your future retirement as you become a Global Citizen!
Michael B Nelson esquire
July 2, 2016