St Lucia Announces a Range of Further Amendments in Its Citizenship by Investment Program
Due to the unstable economic situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Caribbean countries are doing their best to keep their investment immigration programs competitive. Similarly to the some other Caribbean citizenship by investment programs, St Lucia’s program has also undergone important changes. St Lucia implemented a few changes to its Citizenship by investment program due to Covid-19 a couple of months ago. And on 17 June 2020 the government of the country implemented further changes by adopting the Citizenship by Investment (Amendment) Act No.4 of 2020, having expanded the definition of qualifying dependants.
The new changes concern, in particular, family members who may be included as dependants in the application for citizenship. Thus, the maximum age of a child of the main applicant and / or his / her spouse has been increased from 18 to 21, and no other requirements such as confirmation of financial dependence shall be met. As for adult children of the main applicant and / or spouse, the maximum age at which a child over 21 can qualify as a dependant has been raised from 25 to 30. Act No. 4 allows such a child not to be attending a higher education institution — being financially supported by the parents is sufficient.
The same applies to parents of the main applicant and / or spouse. In order to qualify as dependants, they must be fully maintained financially. Living together with the main applicant and his / her spouse is no longer required, and the minimum age of a parent has been lowered from 65 to 55.
Another noteworthy change is the introduction of a completely new dependant category — siblings. A brother or a sister of the main applicant, provided that he / she is single, below the age of 18 and has received the consent of his / her parent or guardian, may be included as a dependant in the application.
Moreover, Act No. 4 specifies addition of any other family members to an existing application once the main applicant has acquired St Lucia’s citizenship, regardless of the investment option chosen. The citizenship can be granted to a child born or legally adopted and a spouse married after the main applicant’s becoming a citizen of the country. Under the new legislation, there is no requirement to submit a post-citizenship application within five years from the date of the original application submission.
Furthermore, in the case of unforeseen circumstances the main applicant is allowed to make investment and pay related fees within the extended time period instead of standard time limits. This concerns both original and post-citizenship applications.
Act No. 4 has opened up a range of new opportunities for investors and their families and made St Lucia’s citizenship by investment more appealing than ever before.
If you would like to take advantage of the amended legislation and become a citizen of St Lucia, contact us at GLS Private Office. Our immigration experts will be glad to answer your questions and provide any possible assistance.