Our founder, Andrew Henderson, has 17 years of experience making connections with professionals offshore and has made no secret of the fact that hiring the best service providers is a crucial element to success.
For example, he saved nearly 30% on a property in Georgia by not only having an assistant call and negotiate in the local language but also by having a lawyer call and make a serious presentation. The deal was easy, and he saved a five-figure sum as a result.
Going offshore scares a lot of people, and those brave enough to do it often decide to be cheap and go it alone. Through our years of experience in the offshore world, we can tell you that having the right professionals to help you is crucial to success.
Having the right people makes all the difference.
At Nomad Capitalist, our goal is to help our clients put the puzzle pieces together and create an offshore plan that works in its entirety rather than just pieces and parts that don’t serve each other. We have developed a global network that we can depend on. Contact us today, and let us show you how we can help.
What criteria should you use to find the best offshore service providers? Here are our suggestions:
Have a Clear Strategy
We always advise people going offshore to focus on their desired result rather than a particular strategy. After all, no one really wants a Paraguay passport; they want what a Paraguay passport offers them.
The benefits are unique and specific to each person, so it’s important to get your strategy clear. For example, if you have no clue why you need an offshore company, maybe you don’t.
If you aren’t clear on your desired outcome, the professional you call surely won’t be. A lack of clarity will result in you either not taking action or taking the wrong action.
If you’re speaking to a trust lawyer, you can bet the cure for whatever ails you will be — wait for it — a trust. Knowing where you want to be at the end of the process will allow you to make better decisions.
Find a Guinea Pig
If you’re reading this blog and are familiar with the experience of our founder, Andrew Henderson, then you’ve already found one. He has experienced the difficulties and anxieties of going offshore for the past 17 years, so you don’t have to.
Our team has tried out new programs and new offshore service providers. Would you like to set up a company in order to get residency in another European country?
Having a guinea pig is valuable because you want to learn from someone in the same boat as you. A Panama lawyer may know a lot about Panama residency (although many know far less than you’d hope), but he doesn’t understand why you want residency, nor does he understand anything about your situation outside Panama.
Knowing that the professionals you choose have passed the test is important and can save you a lot of time and money, not to mention the opportunity cost. You don’t want to be one of those who set up a strategy to save on tax, only to find out you not only wasted your time and money, but you now have to pay tax for the time you had the wrong strategy.
It is vital to vet the right people to reduce the risks. Many offshore service providers won’t have formal credentials except for their experience.
Make sure if you hire an attorney, you verify that they actually are an attorney. There are people out there pretending to be law professionals or speaking in a way that suggests they are attorneys when they actually aren’t.
There are even disbarred attorneys and even guys who have been in prison offering their advice online. If someone claims to be a professional in a particular field, check with the respective association or governing body to make sure.
Don’t Over Pay
This may seem obvious; of course, you wouldn’t pay more than was asked of you. However, it’s better not to learn this rule the hard way.
Think twice about paying for an entire service up-front instead of requesting or availing yourself of installment plans.
In certain parts of the world, the promise of future payment is a strong incentive. Without it, nothing could get done.
One example was when Mr. Henderson once paid a Nicaraguan lawyer all at once, rather than paying half up front and half when the work was done, he paid all at once. Only to give up working with this service provider once he became unmotivated and even a little hostile.
If you value getting the job done, ensure you have the right payment plans with the right professionals.
Effective networking can lead to successfully purchasing real estate, hiring employees, and all sorts of other business opportunities, all because the local professional or service provider knows things about the market that you don’t.
Once you have a good lawyer, use them as a resource. In many smaller or emerging countries, your lawyer can get you appointments with government officials or their other clients who may be business bigwigs.
Networking and having good lawyers could save tens of thousands of dollars in other professional fees and staff costs — not to mention time — by simply making things in the country easier. However, in order to get that kind of treatment, you also need to be a good customer first.
Keep Everything Legal
The internet is littered with shady offers, from cheap diplomatic passports to anonymous companies issuing shares. A lot of this stuff existed twenty years ago or never did exist.
If an offshore service provider offers something that seems too good to be true, ask questions.
Yes, it’s legal to reduce your taxes — in many cases to zero, depending on your situation.
Yes, getting a second passport is possible without waiting for decades.
Anything involving bribes, pay-offs, special favors, or obvious tax evasion should be avoided. Play it straight.
One of the other challenges of the shady or cheap service provider is whether they’ll be in business long-term. For example, our team puts our names and faces out there because we believe you deserve to know who you’re getting advice from.
If you establish an offshore company with some faceless “experts,” you might be asking for trouble.
That offshore company has to be renewed next year, and you’ll have to reach the service provider for help. Perhaps you’ll need apostilled documents or have a question about renewing your residency.
Finding one provider you can work with long-term is better; you’ll sleep more soundly at night.
One of the biggest concerns with incorporating an offshore company online is the quality of service providers.
Yes, there are some good providers in some of these spots, but many providers there aren’t very knowledgeable about your global picture.
If you’re setting up an offshore company, it’s usually because you’re trying to save on tax. In that case, you have to consider the jurisdiction from which you are trying to reduce tax.
Chances are the answers aren’t as simple as setting up a company in Vanuatu and having all of your clients pay you there. Even the best offshore service providers in good jurisdictions won’t know much about US taxes unless they are US citizens themselves.
You should at least make sure that whoever you work with realizes there is a lot of nuance involved.
Whether you value punctuality, a professional website, or the person’s level of English, set boundaries in advance and stick to them.
Another thing about many offshore service providers that can cause frustration is “mini-consultations.” Within 30 seconds of a consultation, they diagnose your problem and recommend a particular strategy.
If a service provider doesn’t ask questions or try to get to know you, they are likely just trying to sell you an off-the-shelf, one-size-fits-all product that may not be what you want or need.
Get a Clear Price
You wouldn’t believe how many service providers don’t know what their own products cost. If you are interviewing professionals offshore, make sure they can give you a total price.
Being nickeled and dimed is frustrating in your own country, but at least you might know enough to have a reasonable expectation. Not getting a firm price overseas can be disastrous or at least wallet-draining.
We recommend getting an all-in-one quote so you know exactly what you will be paying. That said, being clear on price doesn’t mean being cheap.
A good offshore strategy offers amazing monetary and lifestyle benefits, and we don’t recommend the cheapest provider. In fact, we don’t recommend anyone who makes price their selling point. Your taxes, your citizenship, and your investments are not a commodity.
Ask yourself, can this person get me my desired result? Not is this person inexpensive.
Avoid Referrals from the Wrong People
A referral is a great way to find the right professional… right? Not always. In many cases, people seek referrals from friends and colleagues who have very different situations than they do. One example of this is internet forums and expat groups.
If you’re looking to get something done in a foreign country, who better to ask than people who speak your language and are already there? For one thing, most of the advice we see on internet forums is just plain wrong. A lot of it is shady, if not outright illegal.
For example, if you were to set up a UK company as part of a tax mitigation strategy, asking another American living in the UK wouldn’t help me if that expat was paying 50% income tax to the UK. Their goals may be different from yours.
Finding the right offshore service provider can be difficult, especially when you need several different solutions in different areas.
Nomad Capitalist is inspired by our founder, Andrew Henderson’s personal journey toward becoming a global citizen, and our business is centered around guiding clients to avoid mistakes and difficulties. We have now built a network of the best attorneys, accountants, incorporators, real estate agents, and other professionals.
Our approach involves a comprehensive and multi-jurisdictional planning strategy, where our service providers and vendors play a crucial role in both the creation and implementation stages of your Plan B.
Are you frustrated by professionals who are all talk and little action? Apply to become our client today and gain access to our extensive network and years of first-hand experience.