Migration Agents Selling Grenada "Bait and Switch" to Other CBI Programs, Scamming Investors
A new deceptive practice is emerging in Vietnam migration agent circles: "bait and switch". It's when a migration agent markets a passport program from Country A online to lure in prospective investors but instead tries very hard to sell them the program from Country B once in the door....because Country B pays the agent a much higher commission. This is nothing less than a total ethical lapse and a deceptive sales practice by those seeking to profit unfairly from prospective immigrants. Agents RELY on "bait and switch" for one simple reason: to make more money. But if you are even CONSIDERING a future for your family in the U.S., procuring the wrong third country passport can actually increase the chance of getting your U.S. visa denied in the future...really.
"Bait and switch" is nothing new in sales and, from a business standpoint, it makes economic sense. For example, on Black Friday, an electronics store will advertise a low quality TV at an impossibly low price knowing that once you get in the store, you will realize the advertised item is junk, and spend more money on a superior product. Fair enough in the world of retail...but in the world of professional advice?? I don't think so. In the case of investor passport programs, the results of such "bait and switch" can be tragic for an innocent family. And, according to reports we've received from about a number of our Grenada CBI prospects - folks still doing their homework to explore their options -- "bait and switch" is EXACTLY what Ho Chi Minh area migration brokers are doing these days: one day they are smiling it up online with the director of Country A's migration program... the next day hard-selling a prospect that Country B's program is far superior...because they'll get a larger commission from Country B.
In contrast to the Black Friday TV shopper who can readily distinguish the cheap TV from superior models, the prospective CBI investor is NOT able to compare the products intelligently, simply because the agent, with essentially zero substantive understanding of the dozens of competing products he/she is selling, is unable to compare their numerous offerings. Instead, the would-be investor gets a hard-sell touting the benefits of whatever program, at that moment, is offering the agent the biggest financial incentive...investor family interests be damned. In my view, this is absolutely irresponsible and unethical.
WIthout mentioning competing CBI countries by name, I can make this blanket statement as both a former U.S. visa officer and an attorney with almost 30 years of investment-based immigration experience: for the vast majority of CBI investors considering ANY possibility of a future in the U.S., securing a third country passport from any jurisdiction other than Grenada makes absolutely no sense. Why do I say this? Because ONLY Grenada CBI offers an investor the potential of U.S. future via an E-2 Treaty Investor visa and a rapid transition to life in the U.S. for the investor and family.
When, after 27 years of shunning ALL CBI passport programs, LatourLaw decided to launch our Grenada offering in Vietnam, the decision was gleaned from my decades of experience first as a U.S. visa officer, followed by decads of private practice. LatourLaw selected the Grenada CBI Program and the Kawana Bay Kimpton project as the SOLE CBI offering the firm would present to our prospective investors. Because no other CBI option makes sense...and here's why:
Mr. X, with no third country passport: Mr. X comes up to the visa window asking for a U.S. tourist visa. Mr. X has a stable work history, money in the bank, and good life in Vietnam. He wants to go to the U.S. for a vacation/business trip/whatever. In almost all occasions, barring some pre-existing problem, as a visa officer I would almost certainly issue Mr. X his B tourist/business visa because I believe he will comply with its conditions and return to Vietnam.
Mr. Y, with a third country passport: Mr. Y has the same solid background, the same good life in Vietnam EXCEPT Mr. Y has a third country passport. What does that tell me, as a U.S. visa officer tasked with insuring that I only issue visas to people with "non-immigrant intent"? It tells me that Mr. Y is not only THINKING about moving out of Vietnam, but that he has ALREADY invested in that option. To the average visa officer, the fact that Mr. Y procured a third country passport is a NEGATIVE consideration...not a positive one.
Mr. Y, but with at GRENADA CBI passport: During the visa officer's interview with Mr. Y and questions about his third country passport, Mr. Y tells explains that he invested in a GRENADA passport because even though right now he just wants to visit the US as a tourist, he selected Grenada's CBI program because one day , should he become interested in making a U.S. investment, having that passport allows him the OPTION of making an investment via the E-2 Treaty Trader visa.
[Ka-CHUNK- sound of Visa Officer nodding an approving the B visa of the Grenada CBI Investor]
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!
Dec 10, 2018