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SA Expats’ FAQ: Do I lose my citizenship when emigrating from South Africa?

By August 1, 2014October 24th, 2023Tax services and consulting

SA Expats’ FAQ: Do I lose my citizenship when emigrating from South Africa?

August 1, 2014

Is the fair, and generally first, question people want an answer to when financial emigration comes up for discussion…

The answer is no – short and sweet.  Allow us be the myth busters because we deal with this question every day of our lives.

Citizenship is a South African Home Affairs subject – here they keep records of births, deaths, facilitate visa applications and basically control people traffic into and out of the country. The home office has no interest or influence over your financial affairs whatsoever.

Emigration happens to be the result of your financial exit from the country when your tax record with SARS is cleared and the SA Reserve Bank has a record of your local assets and liabilities. It is at this point the South African authorities will declare you a bona fide non-resident, and you are free to move your money and other financial assets to a country of your choice.

In ordinary English: there is no difference between emigration, financial emigration or formal emigration. From a South African standpoint it is one and the same thing and does not affect your citizenship, birthright or right to your South African passport. After emigration, for tax purposes only, you’re recorded as non-resident.

Holding a foreign visa or permanent residency does not mean you’ve lost your South African citizenship; to the contrary, you’ve become a Global Citizen of the World. Once a South African – Always a South African!

And therein lies the beauty of financial emigration. For more information and a free personal consultation on the subject let one of our financial advisers call you!

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