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What is SUBSTANTIAL SOCIO-ECONOMIC BENEFITS ?

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primitivo
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What is SUBSTANTIAL SOCIO-ECONOMIC BENEFITS ?

Postby primitivo » Fri, 22 Feb 2008 6:30 am

Another case of national service:

We got our son Singapore citizenship through registration (under UNDER ARTICLE 124(1)). when he as almost 6. He was not born in Singapore. We left Singapore within a month and he never returned to Singapore ever since. He does not have a Singapore IC card. He has got US citizenship 4 years ago, and his Singapore passport has expired.

Now that he is approaching 18 years of age, Singapore government is contacting us for his national service.

I tried to convince them that he met the following requirements (written by Teo Chee Hean, defense minister):

"ONLY THOSE WHO HAVE EMIGRATED AT A YOUNG AGE AND HAVE NOT ENJOYED
SUBSTANTIAL SOCIO-ECONOMIC BENEFITS ARE ALLOWED TO RENOUNCE THEIR
CITIZENSHIP WITHOUT SERVING NATIONAL SERVICE."

But they will just stick to:

"He is considered to have enjoyed the rights and privileges of Singapore citizenship. "

Notice they've dropped the quantifier "substantial" or "significant" altogether.

Does anyone have experience or suggestion on appearing such cases?

Thanks

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Fri, 22 Feb 2008 2:44 pm

If his passport was valid at any time after his 13th birthday (maybe 11th as that is what it was 4 years ago) then he has been presumed to have enjoyed substantial socio-economic benefits. It been covered in here umpteen times. I don't understand why you would have gotten him Singapore Citizenship though if you were planning on leaving in a month's time? It almost sounds like you wanted the Citizenship as it is easily accepted in the US. If that was the case, then you/he obviously enjoyed substantial socio-economic benefits didn't you? Why didn't you just get him citizenship from your own embassy? Interesting.

Advice, none that would be considered fair by either the child nor the parents. However, what might be thought of is to just ignore it, but be informed that your son will NEVER be able to get an Employment Pass here in the future. And, if he were found out while he is here even if on a Social visit visa, he would be picked up as apparently he is still a Singapore Citizen entering the country on a foreign passport (which is also illegal should they want to pursue it) and notification of intent to renounce was not filed prior to his 11th birthday as should have been done by the parents. This means that his problems were not caused by the Singapore Government as this information has always been available. That is why they tell you on their government websites to be sure of the ramifications of taking a son out of the country without following the necessary protocols.

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Postby road.not.taken » Fri, 22 Feb 2008 4:31 pm

Yes, people playing around with citizenship and passports can find themselves in sticky situations later on. :roll:

Primitivo: I know its not what you want to hear, but why did you get your son Singapore citizenship, at the age of 6 no less, if you didn't want him to serve? Sounds like you define 'substantial socio-economic benefits' one way, and they see the same situation in another way entirely. It probably won't make you feel any better, but the boys I know in NS like it a great deal and wouldn't trade their experiences there for anything.

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Postby primitivo » Sat, 23 Feb 2008 8:19 am

I came to US on an intra-company job transfer. So at that time, I was not sure if this situation is permanent. We even rented out our 2nd hand HDB flat and sold only 2 years ago.

Now how can we possibly persuade a 17 year old boy who have spent 12 years in US to serve Singapore for 2 years?

How do other people managed to achieve that?

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 23 Feb 2008 10:40 am

If you have been reading the threads here you will know that at least one is preparing to return to Singapore to fulfill his duty rather than limit his future mobility and possible opportunities.

The other's? Guess they just fly into Malaysia and have the rellies come to JB to visit them so they don't get picked up by the Authorities.

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Postby primitivo » Sun, 24 Feb 2008 2:22 am

We lived in Singapore only for 4/5 years and do not have other ties with Singapore except for a few friends. My son really do not care about Singapore because he does not like hot weather and can't remember any of his little friends in day care center.

So even if we want him to serve, we can't physically move transport him to Singapore.

Does anyone has a lawyer to recommend?

Thanks

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sun, 24 Feb 2008 6:46 pm

primitivo,

You still haven't told us "why" you got your son Singapore Citizenship.

Was his mother a Singaporean? Are you a Singaporean?

If so are you still a Singaporean holding a US Green Card? If so there are a lot like you. One of the reasons why the Government is so adamant.

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Postby cutiebutie » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 9:46 am

primitivo wrote:We lived in Singapore only for 4/5 years and do not have other ties with Singapore except for a few friends. My son really do not care about Singapore because he does not like hot weather and can't remember any of his little friends in day care center.

So even if we want him to serve, we can't physically move transport him to Singapore.

Does anyone has a lawyer to recommend?

Thanks


:roll: Where did you learn your English and how long did you spend in the US?

SMS is posing the correct questions, answers would be helpful in providing answers.
- Thank God for Darwin -

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Postby primitivo » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 10:57 am

We lived in Singapore for 5 years, all got Singapore citizenship, left for US 12 years ago, and got US citizenship 4 years ago.

English is not our native tongue, so it's an on-going learning process.

thanks

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 1:53 pm

Well, you have just answered you question yourself. It is just as I expected. You have taken you son out of the country without doing your homework first. Secondly, your son as enjoyed the socio-economic benefits of having a Singapore Passport until he was almost 14 years old. Whether or not you think he has or hasn't is immaterial to the Singapore govenrment. Your Singapore Passports made it easier to acquire US Green Cards and subsequently US Citizenship. Therefore he as well as both you and your spouse have enjoyed the benefits that the little red book from the little red dot called Singapore. Therefore, the government here feels it's now time to repay that benefit.

That, unfortunately, is the way it is. You do not have to move back to Singapore. He can come back to do his NS and live on the bases, or he doesn't have to return to do his NS. He just will never be able to return to Singapore as he as broken the law in the eyes of the Singapore Government. It is against the law to hold dual citizenship in Singapore (especially naturalized . Furthermore, it is the law that Singaporean Minors cannot renounce their citizenship until they have completed their NS unless protocol has been followed prior to the child's 11th (13th) birthday. End of Story. While the US doesn't care whether or not he renounces the US will not protect him if he returns to Singapore in the future and he gets picked up because he is in a country where he is still a citizen and that country has priority.

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Postby primitivo » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 3:21 pm

The question is not we the parents have enjoyed substantial benefit, but a boy who left Singapore at 5. When he got his US citizenship 4 years ago, his Singapore passport already expired.

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Postby road.not.taken » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 3:35 pm

But he got to the US on a Singapore passport...

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 4:22 pm

Drowning parent clutching at straws.......

You, in your haste to leave Singapore, did not do your homework and have therefore screwed up your sons life royally. Nothing more I can say. The facts are all out now and it was the parents who created the child's gordian knot that he is now going to have to live with. The rules were there in black & white before you left. Now he's got to pay for your mistakes.

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Postby ProvenPracticalFlexible » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 8:39 pm

primitivo wrote:The question is not we the parents have enjoyed substantial benefit, but a boy who left Singapore at 5. When he got his US citizenship 4 years ago, his Singapore passport already expired.


You do realise that his citizenship did not expire when the passport did?
Passport is still just a travelling document, there are people who live years or even their whole life without having a valid passport, still they are citizens of a country. Obviously your son needed Singapore passport for something, otherwise one would think you would have renounced citizenship when he was 5 and leaving the country.

At end still I'm wondering why do you care if your son is never planning to come back to Singapore?

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Postby ProvenPracticalFlexible » Mon, 25 Feb 2008 8:48 pm

sundaymorningstaple wrote:Drowning parent clutching at straws.......

You, in your haste to leave Singapore, did not do your homework and have therefore screwed up your sons life royally. Nothing more I can say. The facts are all out now and it was the parents who created the child's gordian knot that he is now going to have to live with. The rules were there in black & white before you left. Now he's got to pay for your mistakes.


SMS,

Do you know what actually happens if one skips NS, stays out of country say 10-15 years and returns at age 35-40.

Would mindef press charges against the person? I would assume so.

Or still ask to do the service? Unlikely.

Jail time or fine or what?

Just curious, as this is part is never really covered here. Not asking for myself. :wink: I registered for NS but they didn't want me to do active service. Which of course was a huge dissapointment. :lol: I think 2 years jungle excercise would have done wonders on my beer belly. Plus could have picked up some new language skills faster.


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