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Immigrating to the Bahamas

We Want Your Money, Not You
Although the Bahamian government encourages offshore investing and has facilitated the process of acquiring Bahamas real estate, the same can’t be said for acquiring permanent residence.

Couple at the BeachBahamian Immigration
The Bahamas’ immigration policy was designed to protect the rights and income of the local residents – not an unreasonable proposition considering the flood of illegal immigrants from countries such as Haiti and Cuba the nation receives each year. Consequently, getting a residence permit, far less a work permit, can be a challenge. Click here to see more.

Getting Permanent Residence
If you wish to buy Bahamas real estate valued at $250,000 or more, getting permanent residence is easy. In fact, the Immigration Board generally approves such applications automatically. Major international investors and foreigners who have purchased, or intend to purchase, a local property valued at $500,000 or more, receive accelerated consideration for their residence application.

Homeowners can also obtain an annually renewable Home Owners Residence Card, which acts as a visa for both entry and residence for $50, plus registration fees.

It’s important to note that neither permanent nor annual residence gives a foreigner the right to work in the country.

Getting a Work Permit
In order for a foreigner to work in the Bahamas, they must obtain a work permit, which is only valid for that specific person and position. This process is accelerated for senior personnel and those with special skills not available locally, but other foreigners seeking employment must undergo a rigorous and laborious process. In order for them to obtain the work permit, the Immigration board must first consider whether they believe that the person will be an asset to the islands. If they find this to be the case, the prospective employer must advertise and interview locally, and obtain a certificate from the Labour Exchange to the effect that there is no equally qualified Bahamian resident available to fill the post.

 


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