How can BrightPath Caribbean work for you?


How can BrightPath Caribbean work for you?

The idea of moving or starting a business is easy, and trust us, when you love the Caribbean, it can be the fastest “YES!” you’ve ever said.

Then, you start doing your research and everything seems so simple to do, yet so overwhelming! A simple list of documents can have many layers of intricacy that go from requesting simple certificates, to having them legalized or translated. And now, what’s next? What if you are moving from abroad, requesting residency, purchasing property with a mortgage, starting a new business, and on top of that bringing your pets?

To keep things uncomplicated, thousands of people have used BrightPath as their service provider. Our team will be there for you from day one, sending you updates, requesting documents on your behalf, following up with the authorities, obtaining translations, making appointments with banking institutions, and notaries, and so much more.


 We are here to keep it simple for you!


Thinking of starting a business?

We get you, starting a business is exciting and petrifying at the same time. You need to consider every detail, map out every action, and address any sudden change of plans. And, when you add the component of starting a business in a different country, things can get complicated very quickly.

Our clients have saved time, money, and headaches by engaging with BrightPath for their business incorporation. Once you’re ready to proceed after the initial consultation, our corporate services team will efficiently handle the process of incorporating your business. This includes conducting a company name search, preparing and submitting all the necessary information for incorporation, advising you on the best company structure, assisting with business banking, and registering your business and employees with the relevant government departments. We will also provide regular updates on the progress of your file.

Did you know that we can offer continuous support after your business incorporation?

That’s right! After your business is up and running, we can continue to support you with all the necessary yearly corporate renewals, such as licenses and chamber of commerce, as well as accounting duties by working alongside our latest addition to the group, CaribTax Accounting & Advisory Services, to ensure compliance.


Work Permits for essential employees

Sometimes the best match for a key position will have to come from a different country. Get ready to build your dream team and find with BrightPath the support you need to integrate into your company foreign employees that are crucial to your operation. Work permits in Sint Maarten are a complex request with two sides that must be perfectly synchronized – Labor Department and Immigration Department. Our experienced team will go with you through all the documents from the prospective employee, and company, to check all the requirements and secure a successful outcome.

Does the best employee prospect for a key position live abroad? Let’s discuss the possibility of a work permit! Book a consultation with BrightPath.


Moving to SXM?

The dream of living in the Caribbean becomes a reality with BrightPath. There’s nothing we love more than the final stage of the immigration process when we take our clients to pick up their approved residency permit. Seeing their smiles is the best part! It’s real – they now legally reside in the place of their dreams, and we were a part of making it happen!

Gathering and requesting documents, submitting forms, and following up on your file are some of the many things the Immigration Services team will do with your residency request, so you can sit back and relax while you receive notifications and updates on the process.

How about immigration and real estate all under one roof?

Having worked on thousands of files for over 10 years of business, we can say something for sure; Relocation means Real Estate. Whether you are looking to purchase or rent, the team of professionals at BrightFuture Realty can help you find the perfect spot to call home. They will adapt to your needs, budget, and time frames of your immigration process.



  1. How does BrightPath Caribbean simplify the process of relocating to the Caribbean?

BrightPath Caribbean handles all aspects of the relocation process, including document requests and legalization, residency applications, property purchases, business incorporation, and pet relocation. They provide updates, manage interactions with authorities, and ensure a smooth transition for their clients.

  1. What services does BrightPath offer for individuals looking to start a business in the Caribbean?

BrightPath offers comprehensive business incorporation services, including company name searches, preparation and submission of incorporation documents, advice on company structure, assistance with business banking, registration with government departments, and continuous support for corporate renewals and accounting through CaribTax Accounting & Advisory Services.

  1. How does BrightPath assist with work permits for essential employees in Sint Maarten?

BrightPath guides clients through the complex work permit application process, coordinating with both the Labor and Immigration Departments. They review all necessary documents from the prospective employee and the company to ensure all requirements are met, facilitating a successful outcome for integrating foreign employees into the company.

Do you have additional questions?

Contact us today for a free consultation!


How to renew a work or residency permit in St. Maarten?

If you’re considering renewing your work or residency permit in St. Maarten this means that you’re already enjoying life on The Friendly Island – congratulations! 

Renewing, or as formally referred to, “extending”, a work or residency permit can be just as complex if not more than the initial application.  Why?  Because several components such as tax and banking compliance will come into consideration.  That’s the reason why many people trust the expertise and reliable immigration services at BrightPath Caribbean. 

If you are an existing temporary resident of St. Maarten, you can choose to renew or change your residency status.  Unless you are a Dutch national or a citizen of the United States of America, you will likely be required to renew your temporary residency permit on an annual basis.  This is because, in Sint Maarten, only Dutch and American citizens may successfully request and obtain permanent residency from the onset.  Read here to learn more about the Dutch-American Friendship Treaty and how it can benefit you in securing permanent residency in St. Maarten. 


Temporary residency programs that can be conditionally extended are the following: 

Family Reunion / Family Formation 

This form of temporary residency permit can be extended annually and applies to persons who are being petitioned by a guarantor.  The guarantor must be a legal resident of St. Maarten or a Dutch national that is registered on the island.  The guarantor must also have a direct relationship to the applicant, for example, the guarantor must be a parent or legal guardian, or the spouse of the applicant.  Once the applicant can substantiate five years of uninterrupted legal residency on the island, a change request can be filed to change the status of the permit from temporary to indefinite (also referred to as “permanent”).   

The process does involve coordinating documentation and verifying sources and sufficient means of income.  Verification of the relationship at the civil registry by way of a recent extract may also apply.  Interested in learning about how BrightPath can file for the renewal of a residency permit under this program? Schedule your free consultation today and request a comprehensive service estimate. 


Investor / Retiree Immigration Program 

The investor program and the retiree program are similar in that they both involve a real estate purchase.  BrightPath offers fully integrated immigration services in teamwork with BrightFuture Realty.  Many persons seeking to obtain residency under the investor or the retiree program may also qualify for tax concessions.  Consult with our referral partners at CaribTax Advisory & Accounting Services and schedule your free meeting here.   

For the renewal of residency permits under this program, tax compliance is a requirement, and in the case of the investor program, an appraisal is also a firm requirement.  The appraisal substantiates that the property purchased initially is still owned by the applicant and supports a value above USD 500,000 (NAF 900,000). 

The retiree program does not require the purchase of real estate upfront, but it is an essential part of the renewal process.  This means that the first residency permit granted to the applicant did not have to involve a real estate transaction, but the extension of the permit will.  The minimum amount required for the real estate purchase is USD 250,000 (NAF 450,000).  If you haven’t made your real estate purchase, contact our referral partners at BrightFuture Realty to support you in a manner that fits your budget, meets the immigration requirements, and the timeframes to ensure your residency permit is renewed without interruptions. 


Work Permit Renewal 

Work permit renewals, as is the case with the first application, must be requested by the employer.  Evidence of tax compliance is a requirement for both the employer and the employee.  Also, as a part of the renewal process, the applicant must substantiate that the salary is being deposited into their personal bank account and is equivalent to the amount declared in the initial work permit.   

With work permits, the renewal process involves the same paperwork initially presented for the first-time request.  We cannot substitute original diplomas or notarized copies in the renewal process.  Advertising the vacancy locally will also be required.  Rely on the knowledge and expertise that the team can offer you for work permit renewal services to ensure that you’re well on your way to permanent residency if that is your goal.   


The information herein is provided in the form of a summary of the most common immigration programs in the context of temporary residency permits that can be extended.  In generalizing, please consider that every circumstance is different.  We encourage you to schedule a consultation to learn more about how BrightPath can assist you with immigration, tax and accounting, and real estate services to support you in the renewal of your legal residency in St. Maarten. 



  1. What are the requirements for renewing a work permit in St. Maarten?

 To renew a work permit in St. Maarten, the employer must request the renewal and provide evidence of tax compliance for both the employer and employee. The employee must substantiate that their salary is being deposited into their personal bank account and is equivalent to the amount declared in the initial work permit being extended. The renewal process involves the same paperwork as the initial application, including original diplomas or notarized copies, and advertising the vacancy locally. 


  1. How can temporary residency be renewed under the Family Reunion/Family Formation program?

Temporary residency under the Family Reunion/Family Formation program can be renewed annually. The guarantor, who must be a legal resident of St. Maarten or a Dutch national registered on the island, must have a direct relationship to the applicant (e.g., parent, legal guardian, or spouse). The process involves coordinating documentation, verifying income sources, and possibly verifying the relationship at the civil registry. After five years of uninterrupted legal residency, a change request can be filed to change the status from temporary to indefinite. 


  1. What are the specific requirements for renewing residency under the Investor/Retiree Immigration Program?

For the Investor Immigration Program, tax compliance and an appraisal confirming the property value above USD 500,000 (NAF 900,000) are required. For the Retiree Immigration Program, while the initial residency permit does not require a real estate purchase, the renewal does, with a minimum property purchase amount of USD 250,000 (NAF 450,000). Applicants must ensure they meet these financial criteria and have the necessary property investments to qualify for renewal. 

Do you have additional questions?

Contact us today for a free consultation!


How to Obtain Citizenship in St. Maarten

St Maarten Citizenship Requirements

For many persons the dream of a life in the Caribbean can be made a reality with citizenship by investment programs in islands such as St. Kitts and Nevis, Dominica, St. Lucia, and Antigua, to name a few options of territories that offer passports to foreign investors and/or retirees that meet the required criteria.


What do all these have in common?

Aside from visa-free access to many countries, including the European Union for leisure visits, affordable real estate options, possible tax incentives, and additional citizenship – yes, you do get to call the country issuing your passport “home” – they all are members of the Caribbean Community.  Island hopping becomes a reality with one of these passports and yes, you can consider extended stays of over 30 days when staying within member countries of the Caribbean Community.


But, what about St. Maarten?

The tiny jewel consisting of 37 square miles known as Saint Martin/Sint Maarten is the smallest territory shared by two nations, namely France and The Netherlands, and allows the free movement of persons between both sides of the island without a physical border.  The French side is French overseas territory, and the Dutch side is a country within the kingdom of the Netherlands.


Want to obtain citizenship in St. Maarten?

Although the option to obtain direct citizenship through a form of investment – whether by real estate purchase or by investing in a business – is not available on either side of the island, legal residency on St. Maarten is possible through real estate investment.  The process towards a possible Dutch citizenship starts with legal residency.


How do I obtain legal residency in St. Maarten?

There are two very popular ways for persons to request residency in St. Maarten.  These are by real estate investment or by retirement.  BrightPath Caribbean has over 10 years of serving as the most trusted immigration services provider in the English Caribbean and can be your valued partner in obtaining your legal residency in St. Maarten.

With its real estate affiliate through BrightFuture Realty, the team at BrightPath can support you in all aspects of your relocation from purchasing the right property that meets your budget and the criteria of your immigration program, to ensuring your tax and estate planning is in place, and obtaining the necessary mortgage financing if needed.  With a diverse and specialized team of professionals under one roof, more and more foreign nationals trust BrightPath Caribbean when exploring opportunities to legally reside or obtain citizenship in the Caribbean.


What are the advantages of moving to St. Maarten?

Moving to St. Maarten can often come with a series of challenges when not relying on BrightPath.  There are many factors to consider, and this article is meant to provide general advice from the experience and perspective of our actual clients.

  1. Basic healthcare is affordable: Moving to St. Maarten for persons over the age of 50 can often be primarily determined by the standard of healthcare.  Maarten, in comparison to its peers, offers adequate healthcare for persons residing on the island.  Most doctors are educated and/or trained in The Netherlands or at a medical institution that meets European Union Medical and Educational Standards.  You can pay out of pocket for medical consultations with the average fee ranging from US$60 to US$150 per session. If you wish to retain your health insurance in your country of origin, consult with BrightPath on how to secure a medical evacuation plan accepted by the local immigration authorities.


  1. Maarten is free of duties on all imports: Regardless of your residency status, one of the benefits of living in St. Maarten is that there are absolutely no import duties.  This means that you can import your personal belongings into the island and pay no taxes on the value of these imports.  This is a big advantage when managing the cost of a relocation.  Many vehicles and household items are available for purchase on the island, but if you still don’t manage to find what you like, importing one is a very popular option too.


  1. Zero-rate property tax: Any decision that involves a relocation requires analyzing direct costs as well as recurring costs.  Retirees must remain mindful of hidden expenses when planning this chapter of their lives because most rely on a fixed income and a combination of earnings from investments.  Maarten has a zero property tax rate, which makes owning real estate an attractive option.  Insurance options are also reasonable with various insurance carriers that can offer you competitive rates.  If purchasing a condo, many home-owner associations include structural property insurance in the monthly dues, which makes it simpler for budget management and forecasting.


  1. Competitive pricing on real estate: Depending on what dynamics you may be used to in your local real estate market, the Caribbean, particularly St. Maarten, offers very modern construction with attractive finishes and spectacular ocean views.  While enjoying the incentive of no property taxes, you can observe your property increase in price year over year without worrying about paying annual fees for its rise in value.  With our affiliate, BrightFuture Realty, you can explore real estate options available in St Maarten from modern studios to luxury villas, all unique in their appeal and tailored to fit your budget.


  1. U.S. and Canadian-accredited schooling:  Not all of our clients are retiring in the Caribbean!  Some are starting a new chapter in their life at a younger stage or accepting a new job opportunity, and oftentimes, have a family with children.  The Caribbean has limitations, and one is that the island does not offer various options concerning tertiary education.  For this reason, having access to accredited schooling is crucial to the long-term planning for your children’s education.  To learn more about relocating with your family and school enrollment standard requirements, schedule your consultation here.


  1. Tax incentives for retirees: If you are age 50 or over and planning to retire in St. Maarten, the team at BrightPath can facilitate immigration and tax services to support you in taking advantage of the incentives created for retirees.  Because these incentives require a series of steps to qualify, a multi-disciplinary team such as the experts of BrightPath is recommended for a higher probability of success.  Under the ‘penshonado program, once the immigration process has been completed, qualifying applicants may enjoy a reduced fixed taxation rate on retirement income in St. Maarten.


Although the path to citizenship in St. Maarten requires several steps, including a minimum of five years of residing on the island with permanent residency in place, the path to citizenship in St. Maarten can be an enjoyable one with all the entertainment and European flair that the island has to offer, but it can also come with many hidden benefits that make life in the Caribbean exactly what it was meant to be – a truly enjoyable experience!

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  1. What are the options available for obtaining legal residency in St. Maarten, and how can BrightPath Caribbean assist individuals in this process?

Legal residency in St. Maarten can be obtained through real estate investment or retirement. BrightPath Caribbean, with over 10 years of experience, offers support in all aspects of relocation, including property purchase, tax planning, and mortgage financing.

  1. What are some of the advantages of moving to St. Maarten, particularly in terms of healthcare, import duties, property tax, real estate pricing, and schooling options?

St. Maarten offers affordable healthcare, no import duties, zero property tax, competitive real estate pricing, and accredited schooling options for families. These advantages make the island an attractive destination for relocation.

  1. How can retirees take advantage of tax incentives in St. Maarten, and what steps are involved in qualifying for these incentives?

Retirees aged 50 and over can benefit from tax incentives in St. Maarten under the ‘penshonado’ program. BrightPath Caribbean facilitates immigration and tax services to help retirees qualify for reduced fixed taxation rates on retirement income.

Do you have additional questions?

Contact us today for a free consultation!


BrightPath Caribbean