Leaving your native country can be a decision fraught with many pros and cons and ultimately forces you to really focus on what you value the most.
A sense of adventure versus fear of the unfamiliar. Devotion to loved ones versus betterment of your own life. Loyalty to aspects of your country versus contempt for aspects of its political systems. The list is long.
Our founder Andrew Henderson has been an expat for more than 30 years and has often shared his number one reason for leaving the US and his obsession with freedom.
“I think if 7 billion humans lived in true freedom (complete control of their lives and property), the world would be immeasurably better. No wars, less crime, more creativity, more productivity, more happiness. Nobody can wave a wand and make that happen overnight, but as individuals, I think we can each move toward the condition of having more personal freedom.”
Being an expat greatly increased his personal freedom, and you can do the same.
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Freedom of Movement
Many people no longer feel free. Ultimate freedom is saying no matter what happens in your country, you have the option to get away.
If you read the fine print in your passport, you’ll see that you don’t own it. It’s the property of the government that owns you. Yes, we use the term’ own.’ No matter where you are a citizen, the government represents you with a number, whether a social security number, social insurance number, or national insurance number.
That makes you and your lifetime of earning power a well-defined financial asset to the government. Your government can, among many other things, borrow money based on the fact it can confiscate a substantial portion of your earnings for as long as you live. The US is now over 32 trillion dollars in debt and can at any time pass that debt on to you in the form of taxes or confiscations.
Because that’s such a sweet deal for the government, they always retain the right to cancel your passport and make you stay where you are.
If you have your pick of 252 countries and territories, why would you choose one where you have to pay 30% tax or more?
There are many places out there where you can get your tax bill right down into the single digits, and the good news is if you want to live in Western Europe, many countries now have tax incentives to help you do just that.
If you hold only one passport, you are always disadvantaged in terms of freedom. As was seen in many nations during the pandemic, you can be, in essence, a captive of your own country overnight when any ’emergency’ is declared.
Forge your path to freedom through Citizenship by Descent. Why not pursue your expat life through your heritage, whether Italian, Irish, Polish, Mexican, etc.?
Alternatively, you can pursue Citizenship by Investment in one of the tax-friendly Caribbean countries, the ultimate opportunity to build freedom and have optionality.
Freedom is defined by optionality. At Nomad Capitalist, we have helped seven and eight-figure entrepreneurs and investors legally go where they are treated best, which includes creating more wealth through lower taxes, asset protection, more freedom in your life by diversifying internationally, and better returns on your investment, and ultimately a better lifestyle.
Control of Your Property
When you live in one country and hold only one citizenship, you have all your eggs in one basket.
Is everything you own, house, cars, vacant land, bank accounts, company incorporations, investment accounts, and personal belongings in one place?
Mr. Henderson once also lived like this, leaving him open to government overreach. He once had the State of Idaho allege that he owed $1,500. Two years later, they decided the amount owed was $30,000. He had to hire a lawyer and accountant at his own expense to prove the amount owed was actually $0. After that, he not only left the state, he left the country.
Are you a high net-worth entrepreneur and have had similar experiences?
When you begin to live as an expat in other countries, even as a visitor with no local legal status, you realize how easy it is to buy assets, open bank accounts, and find new ways to hold assets outside your native country. Options abound.
Especially if you make your income online, there are fantastic options available. You can have a website owned by a company in one country, a bank in another, and spend your time living in other places.
Would you sooner pay higher taxes or lower, or even zero, taxes? Control of your own property is a cornerstone of freedom, as we define it. Being an expat gives you far more control of your property. It’s an easy choice.
Control of My Life
Using more than one passport allows you to travel more freely and stay in many places longer than even the best top-tier passports allow.
You can also easily use medical care all over the world. You can buy brand-name medications in two minutes at drugstores without paying $150 and a half-day appointment hassle to get a prescription.
You can meet interesting people from completely different backgrounds, cultures, and viewpoints.
You can eat wonderful food that costs half of the tasteless factory food.
Control of my own life is a cornerstone of freedom. Being an expat gives you more control over your life. Another easy choice.
If personal freedom is something that is deeply important and satisfying to you, take a serious look at living as an expat. It might end up being your number one reason too.
While a second residence is good and will buy you a certain amount of freedom, because your citizenship is your identity, it dictates your ultimate freedom.
Is your main citizenship no longer serving you, costing you too much money, or taking too many of your freedoms? Many seeking greater freedom are looking to countries like Portugal because these countries are liberal and offer personal freedoms representing their values.
There are always pros and cons of becoming an expat. Thankfully, you have options.
At Nomad Capitalist, we don’t believe in one size fits all but rather create holistic strategies specifically designed to help you find the best citizenship for you, taking you where you are treated best. Apply here to become a client.