Warning: Don’t Buy These Second Passports

Having a second passport and dual citizenship has a lot of benefits. It can expand your travel possibilities, increase your safety, give you the right to reside in other countries, and give you a way to cross international borders if your primary passport is lost or stolen.

For U.S. citizens, a second passport has another benefit: It’s an essential prerequisite to expatriation—that is, giving up your U.S. citizenship in order to permanently disconnect from the U.S. taxing authority. However, despite what you may read on the Internet, getting a second passport isn’t like ordering a DVD on Netflix.

No legitimate second-passport program simply lets you write a check and receive a second passport back in a few days. There’s much more to it…

Every country has a path to naturalization through its constitution and its nationality law. Most countries require a period of extended legal and physical residence—from two years up to 10 years or more—for you to be eligible for citizenship and a passport. You must also demonstrate good conduct, full compliance with immigration rules, and some degree of language proficiency, as well as substantial integration into the local culture.

With “white-market” passports, you obtain citizenship and a passport through normal means set forth in the law.

But use a gray-market or black-market (fake) passport, and you could be subject to arrest and/or deportation at any time. Avoid these “passports”.

Editor’s note: In the current issue of your International Living magazine (p. 23), Mark reveals five ways you can spot gray-market or black-market passports. Arm yourself with these red flags and you’ll make sure you enjoy the highest level of dual citizenship. If you’re not a subscriber already, you can sign up here and gain instant access to this article and the rest of the articles in the July issue.

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