IM People in The News

“IRCC Will Ask for a Progress Report. Be Sure of This” – Investment Migration People in the News This Week

Investment migration people in the news this week include:

  • David Lesperance of Lesperance & Associates
  • Jean-François Harvey and Steve Corbin of Harvey Law Group
  • Global Citizen Solutions
  • Divesh Sharma of Arcum Global
  • Behring Regional Center LLC
  • Laura Foote Reiff of Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Gül Gül of Golden Sign
  • Vrinda Gupta of Vazir Group
  • Waquar Karim of WWICS Group
  • Michael Waechter of Abode Options
  • David Regueiro of RIF Trust and Latitude
  • John D. Hanafin of Huriya Private
  • Imran Farooq of AAA Associates
  • Tiago Camara of PTGoldenVisa
  • Tony Ebraheem of 111 Immigration – Celebrity Estates: Russia, Ukraine and the Benefits of Alternative Citizenship [podcast]

The war between Russia and Ukraine is upsetting what many thought to be a well-established world order. The ripples of the conflict are being felt thousands of miles away, as the global economy struggles to recalibrate on the fly. The return of war to Europe reinforces the need for clients to have a backup plan in place to protect their families and their assets. Exploring alternative citizenship is a powerful, and often underexplored, tool in this regard.

In this episode, David Lenok is joined by David Lesperance, of Lesperance and Associates, in discussing the international impact of the land war between Russia and Ukraine, along with the legality of citizenships for individuals looking to gain additional or renounce existing ones in order to insulate themselves, their families and their assets from potential danger.

Wall Street Journal: Want to Retire in Portugal? Here’s What to Know, as Americans Move There in Droves.

Another incentive encouraging the influx of foreigners is the Non-Habitual Resident program (NHR), allowing some foreign residents to apply for low tax rates and exemptions for a 10-year period. American expat residents are still required to file U.S. tax returns, but they can’t be double-taxed under a tax treaty. Global Citizen Solutions, an international consulting firm, offers a guide to the NHR program on its website. James Cave, author of “Moving to Portugal Made Simple,” has a useful website, too.

Calgary Sun – Planning a move to Canada to launch your new business? Get to know the Startup Visa Program

Divesh Sharma of New Delhi-based legal consultancy firm, Arcum Global, says entrepreneurs should seek out investors who have significant experience in the same industry. In addition to giving their opinions more legitimacy with IRCC, finding like-minded investors is also the best way to ensure you’ll have the support and guidance you need to help your business grow.


Jean-Francois Harvey, global managing partner of Harvey Law Group in Hong Kong, says proving your dedication will likely require obtaining a work permit, coming to Canada and starting your business while your permanent residence file is being processed.

“This is not a passive investment program, and does require active participation from the candidate,” says Harvey. “IRCC will ask for a progress report. Be sure of this.”

TheStreet – Crypto Column: Prices Mixed as Stocks Slump Over Fed Policy Concern

Closer to home, David Lesperance, managing partner of immigration and tax adviser at Lesperance & Associates, said crypto exchanges have been making a lobbying effort to prefer the Federal Trade Commission over the Securities and Exchange Commission in regulating cryptocurrencies.

This became more open, he said, when Paul Grewal, chief legal officer for Coinbase (COIN), challenged the SEC over its proposal to update its definition of an exchange, saying the commission is “going beyond its authority.”

Lesperance said the January SEC proposal expands the definition of an exchange to include “systems that offer the use of non-firm trading interest and communications protocols to bring together buyers and sellers of securities.”

“Since being announced, crypto exchanges have been lobbying to have it amended,” he said. “They are challenging SEC Chair Gary Gensler’s position that it was necessary in a modern world to update ‘the definition of an exchange’ to cover platforms for all kinds of asset classes that bring together buyers and sellers.”

Blockworks – US Citizens Are Moving Abroad to Sidestep Crypto Regulation, Law Firm Says

US nationals are interested in dual citizenship as a result of economic uncertainty, political upheaval and the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, according to the Harvey Law Group.

But other more recent trends include individuals wanting to move to regions implementing strong pro-business, and particularly pro-cryptocurrency, approaches and policies, Harvey Law Group immigration lawyer Steve Corbin told Blockworks.


In some cases, the firm has clients looking to renounce their US citizenship to avoid future taxes, Corbin said, adding a second citizenship is one step toward that.

One of the most popular destinations for crypto holders is Antigua, which doesn’t have personal income, capital gains, inheritance or wealth taxes, Corbin said.

Bloomberg Law – Immigrant Investor Group Sues Over Guidance on EB-5 Restart

A California-based company is suing U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services over recent guidance canceling authorization for immigrant investor enterprises.

In a lawsuit filed Friday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Behring Regional Center LLC argues that USCIS, a unit of the Department of Homeland Security, is in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act and its recent guidance contradicts the clear intent of Congress.

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Greenberg Traurig LLP, which represents Behring in the lawsuit over the USCIS guidance, also represented the company in that case. Laura Foote Reiff, a partner at the law firm, is a co-chair of the EB-5 Investment Coalition.

Business Insider – The Russia-Ukraine war has spurred a crackdown on ‘golden passports.’ Here’s what they are and why the EU is trying to ban them.

In Turkey, wealthy Russians are buying as many as four apartments at a time in order to qualify for citizenship, Gül Gül, the CEO of Istanbul based real-estate company Golden Sign, told Insider earlier this month.

“Every investment is the lifeblood of the Turkish economy,” she said, adding that Russians accounted for 70% of her company’s sales last month.

Gulf News – Migration outlook for 2022

“The pandemic has changed people’s perspective when it comes to quality of life, the healthcare benefits they are currently receiving, and the ones provided in other countries which they would like to receive. Many Indians, Africans, and Middle Eastern nationals are considering moving to Canada or different countries in Europe to provide better for their families,” says Vrinda Gupta, Brand Custodian of Vazir Group.

Depending on where one is from, the advantages of moving to another country can seem attractive. For example, places such as Canada can offer immigrants many benefits.

“Canadian citizenship is a gateway for clients to turn their dreams into reality; it provides economic stability, a safe environment, top-quality education, a better healthcare system, and certain tax benefits,” says Gupta.


“With higher immigration targets and more efficient processes in place, the Canadian immigration landscape for 2022 looks quite promising,” says Waquar Karim, Group Vice President, WWICS Group (Business Immigration).

“Canada has one of the world’s lowest natural population growth rates, which creates economic and fiscal pressures. Therefore, Canada needs immigrants to drive its economy. In fact, immigration’s importance has increased due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Canada announced an ambitious plan to welcome more than 1.3 million immigrants over the next three years to support its post-pandemic growth. Among them will be foreign entrepreneurs and investors who are willing to make investments in the country’s economy,” Karim says.

Gulf News – Global uncertainty drives demand for second citizenship and residency

“The demand and supply for second citizenship by investment will continue to see growth in the future,” says David Regueiro, COO of RIF Trust and VC of Latitude.

“For clients, socio-economic and political pressures in their home country coupled with health concerns with the pandemic, are the core drivers for HNWIs and UHNWIs to seek out a second citizenship to ensure they have the perfect plan B insurance policy for their family to travel and relocate easily.”


“Second citizenship is not a luxury anymore – today it is important to secure the family’s future and have a plan B, as it’s difficult to predict what lies ahead,” says Tony Ebraheem, Founder and Lawyer, 111 Immigration.


“Demand for CBI and RBI programmes has risen since the pandemic struck, which created instability, unemployment and social conflict. People more than ever needed the freedom to move and they also needed a backup plan for themselves and family members,” says Tiago Camara, Partner, PTGoldenVisa, which specialises in the Portugal Golden Visa.


“While this is due to take effect next month, the Vanuatu government has established a national task force to obtain a reversal on the EU’s decision,” says John D Hanafin, Founder and CEO, Huriya Private.


“Most countries in the Caribbean offering CBI and second passport depend heavily on their tourism industry for economic growth,” says Imran Farooq, CEO, AAA Associates.


“Investment in real estate for citizenship is without a doubt the best route as it makes the application virtually free considering the returns and the capital appreciation,” says Michael Waechter, Director, Abode Options.

Christian Henrik Nesheim AdministratorKeymaster

Christian Henrik Nesheim is the founder and editor of Investment Migration Insider, the #1 magazine – online or offline – for residency and citizenship by investment. He is an internationally recognized expert, speaker, documentary producer, and writer on the subject of investment migration, whose work is cited in the Economist, Bloomberg, Fortune, Forbes, Newsweek, and Business Insider. Norwegian by birth, Christian has spent the last 16 years in the United States, China, Spain, and Portugal.

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