Advice
March 29, 2017
Reading Time: 5 min

Why you should not buy a fake passport on the black market and how to get it the legal way avoiding scams

Obtaining citizenship is divided into legal and "working" ways. Fraudsters offer to buy a passport in violation of the laws of several states at once. This is fraught with trouble from large fines and a ban on entry into the EU countries to criminal liability and compromising evidence, which is at their disposal.

We will tell you how to get a passport without consequences and how not to accidentally entrust your money and reputation to scammers.

Vladlena Baranova
Vladlena Baranova

The Head of the Legal Department at Immigrant Invest

How to get a second passport legally

Why you should not buy a fake passport on the black market and how to get it the legal way avoiding scams

What ways to get a second passport are offered by scammers

Scammers offer to become citizens of another country quickly and bypass the law. Most often they promise to help obtain a passport of Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic and Greece. If the standard procedure for obtaining citizenship takes months or years, scammers guarantee that their client will receive status in just a few months.

Fraudsters hint at connections with influential people, promise to bribe officials or forge records in the archives. These methods do not work and can bring about big trouble.

States are tightening the rules and more carefully monitoring the procedure for obtaining citizenship every year. For example, 370 criminal cases were opened in Hungary due to falsification of documents when applying for citizenship in 2020.

Typically, scammers use one of three schemes: identity falsification with a fake passport or fake ID, non-existent relatives, or a fictitious marriage with a fake marriage certificate. We will explain how activities like making fake passports are dangerous.

Black scheme for obtaining a second passport

The Slovenian public services website warns of increased cases of fraud

Identity falsification. The company finds local residents who are ready to “sell their identity”. A figurehead submits documents for a passport. But a client of the company comes instead to submit biometrics or fingerprints and photographs.

Deception is revealed when checking or when a person begins to use the document. This leads to administrative or criminal liability.

Fictitious relatives. In some countries, you can obtain citizenship under a simplified scheme if you prove that you or your immediate family was born in the country. This is a legitimate way that scammers are trying to use.

The client is promised to “find” his Romanian or Bulgarian roots. After the money has been paid and the process of collecting documents has begun, the “lawyers” stop communicating.

Sometimes foreigners are immediately offered to forge a birth certificate in order to confirm non-existent family ties with a citizen of the country. This method is unreliable: all documents are carefully checked, and fake certificates and certificates are easy to spot.

Consequences for customers of such companies are serious: deportation from the country, a ban on visiting EU countries, fines and criminal liability.

Fictitious marriage. Each country establishes its own procedure for obtaining a passport for those who marry its citizen. Most often, obtaining citizenship will not work right away: you will need to live together in the country from one to several years, pass an exam on knowledge of the language and history, and confirm integration into society.

For example, in order to apply for citizenship in Germany, you need to be married for three years. Officials check whether the spouses really live together and lead a common life. If the deception is revealed, the marriage is annulled and the violator can be deported from the country.

In most cases, detours to citizenship lead to loss of time and money, and in the worst case, to criminal liability and the loss of the ability to travel to the European Union. For example, in Romania, falsification of documents can result in up to three years in prison.

Where in Europe you can get a residence permit by investment

Country

Country

Investment amount

Investment amount

Time to obtain a residence permit

Time to obtain a residence permit

Country

Investment amount

€100,000

Time to obtain a residence permit

3 months

Country

Investment amount

€250,000+

Time to obtain a residence permit

2 to 6 months

Country

Investment amount

€250,000+ 

Time to obtain a residence permit

3 months

Country

Investment amount

€500,000+ 

Time to obtain a residence permit

2 to 3 months

After obtaining a residence permit, the applicant can apply for permanent residence, and then for citizenship. The terms and conditions for submitting documents for permanent residence and citizenship depend on the specific country. For example, in Portugal and Austria, you can apply for permanent residence after 5 years of living in a country with a residence permit.

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A second passport allows you to travel to EU countries without a visa

A second passport allows you to freely travel around the Schengen countries, take your business to the international arena, study at European universities and move to live in a country with a warm climate.

Applying for a second passport on the black market can lead to fines, a ban on entry into the European Union, and even criminal liability.

You can get a second passport in the EU and the Caribbean in legal ways by going through the naturalization process from a residence permit to citizenship or by participating in investment programs.

Immigrant Invest is a licensed agent for government programs in the EU and the Caribbean. We will help you choose the right program for obtaining a second passport.

Immigrant Invest is a licensed agent for government programs in the European Union and the Caribbean.

Frequently asked questions

  • Why get a second passport?

    A second passport allows you to freely travel around the Schengen countries and enjoy the rights that citizens of these countries have. With a passport of an EU or Caribbean country, you can:

    • move to another country to study or work;

    • move freely within the Schengen countries without the need to obtain a visa;

    • register a company abroad;

    • open accounts in international banks;

    • change tax residence.

  • Can family members get a second citizenship?

    All investment programs allow the spouses and minor children of the investor to apply for citizenship. The participation of other relatives is limited and depends on the conditions of a particular program. Vanuatu citizenship can be obtained by the investor’s children under the age of 25 and parents over the age of 50. All adult relatives must be financially dependent on the applicant. Montenegrin citizenship can be obtained by children even over 18 years old, provided that the parent is financially responsible. Citizenship of Malta after 3 years of holding a residence permit can be obtained by children under 29 years old, parents, as well as grandparents over 55 years old, subject to financial dependence on the investor. Caribbean citizenship can be obtained by the entire investor’s family, including brothers and sisters.

  • How much do you need to invest to get a second passport?

    The minimum investment in Caribbean countries is $100,000. In some cases, the funds spent can be returned after 4 years or 5 years. In most EU countries, you can get a passport only after obtaining a residence permit and permanent residence. The average investment amount for obtaining a residence permit in European countries is €250,000. You can invest in real estate, government funds, business or scientific activities. Immigrant Invest is a licensed agent for government programs in the EU and the Caribbean. Our lawyers will help you collect the necessary package of documents, pass a Due Diligence check and provide legal support at all stages of obtaining a second passport.