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Parviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

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  • Writer's pictureParviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

The Hidden Threats to Your Future Citizenship

By Parviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

Time and application friction are lurking threats to your future mobility asset portfolio

If you are on the path to improve your self-sovereignty and freedom of movement, it’s important to know the difference between citizenship acquisition in practice versus “parchment guarantees.” 

Any mobility asset's (citizenship, residency or visa) eligibility terms can be completely eviscerated depending on the applicable variables of time  and/or application friction, including risk of denial.

Recitation of the eligibility terms absent those factors is worthless. Decision-making without consideration of those factors is perilous.

Time and application friction are the hidden threats to your future citizenship, residency or visa eligibility. 

For example, if one preliminarily "qualifies" for a tourist or other nonimmigrant visa to some country but appointments are being set eighteen months out and someone with your personal profile gets denied 60% of the time, effectively the visa is not reliably available to you.

At very least, it's less available to you than it is available.

In other words, the time and the application friction completely change the reality of the availability of that given visa. Mobility law practitioners intuitively understand this, whereas citizenship marketers, influencers, and travel bloggers do not.

Time Exposure to Eligiblity Attack Vectors 

In citizenship and residency matters, time is a killer if you are counting on future eligibility.

The more time it takes for you to realize your eligibility requirements, the more vulnerable you are to attack vectors to your eligibility. 

Attack vectors such as:

- risk of lawful legislative change 

- risk of unlawful legislative change

- risk of agency-level change or interpretation of requirements 

- change in your personal status

- change in how strict requirements are being applied

- Risk of development of a multi-year backlog in processing 

A two, three, five or six year period of residency leading to naturalization eligibility leaves you exposed to to these changes. And yes, these changes happen frequently.

Therefore, the future promised legal right to the citizenship, residence or visa is not worth as much as having the darn thing NOW.

Not even close.

This goose knows the difference between "You get..." and "You can apply for..."

This is why it's so important to distinguish between:

  • Citizenship NOW vs. Residency with a  path to citizenship

  • Time until application eligibility vs. time until realization of the benefit

  • Law on paper vs. law in practice

The citizenship in the hand is worth way more than the citizenship in the bush. Don’t weigh them equally. 

Citizenships and birds in the hand are just worth more

Don't let any influencers or flashy marketers confuse you by casually referencing future eligibility for citizenship after a period of residence as being a given.

It's not a given. No, it's not a done deal.

There's risk in that time. Understand that and plan accordingly.

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