Getting Residency In Greece

Greece has been in the news recently and not for good reasons. The news that Greece was in trouble economically was no secret, and this made many foreigners avoid visiting Greece as they feared an economic collapse would render all of their money useless.

I would be the first to admit that, like the many Americans that were dissuaded to visit Greece, I was also afraid of going to Greece and investing in the country. I also told many of my clients to avoid Greece at all cost.

While the banks had trouble adjusting to the harsh times that the country was facing, the financial institutions that call Greece their home continued strong and because of this they managed to salvage a good portion of the faith that the banks had in the country.

There is a lot of future in Greece’s economy, especially considering its EU membership and value of it’s EU passport. Things can only look up for Greece and Americans are starting to inquire about the country.

Out of all the countries on this series of articles that I have talked about, I must admit that Greece is the least popular. The reason is what I just explained, they feared that the country might have an economic implosion like the one they experienced recently.

Experts say that this is not bound to happen again, or at least very unlikely. The government of Greece is now promoting several investment visa programs and have made their immigration laws easier to navigate and understand.

As opposed to the United States that only allows close relatives to immigrate applicants through the family-based program Greek offers an easy path that allows Americans who have Greek ancestry to immigrate to the country and obtain a visa.

This has to be proven via a birth certificate and other documents that prove the veracity of your statement. Of course, the same laws for family-based immigration applies to Greece as if your husband or spouse is a Greek national that can grant you a permanent residency and eventual citizenship.

Greece also has a work visa program similar to the one that is offered in the United States. You need to have a job offer from a Greek business or be transferred from the same company in the United States that has an office in Greece.

In order to apply for the work visa, besides having a job offer, you will also have to show a document that shows that you are in good health. The document can be from a doctor in the United States, but it will have to be translated.

Some of the documents that you will need in order to apply for a Greek visa or residency include:

  • Visit a Greek Consulate or Embassy
  • A full copy of passport
  • Two passport sized photographs
  • Proof of medical insurance
  • Health Certificate from an approved Greek medical institution
  • Proof of residence in Greece
  • Proof of good financial standing
  • Proof of tax payments
  • Employment contract, if entering Greece with a work visa

Greek also offers a visa for retirees or for Americans who are receiving a decent strain of income from overseas. In order to qualify for this visa an American must have the equivalent of 2,000 Euros per month increased by 20% if you have a husband or spouse as your dependent, and 15% per child.

Greek offers a residency visa if you purchase property in the country. Because if the recent economic downturn the cost of real estate in Greece fell substantially. The property you purchase must cost at least 250,000 Euros and can include every member of your close family as a dependant.

In order for the real estate visa to be approved, the investor and every dependant included in the application must be in good health and must have a clean criminal record. Learning the Greek language is also highly recommended.Consumer Resource Guide

When your purchase is approved and you are granted the visa, there is no limit to the number of days in which you can be in the country. The visa can be renewed after five years of being in Greece under the condition that the property is still under the applicant’s name.

It is important to take note that the real estate investment visa does not lead to citizenship, it is not dual intent. You can become a citizen of Greece if one of your children is born there or if you get married to a Greek national.

I hope you’ve found this article on how to get residency in Greece to be helpful. For more information, or for assistance with residency in Greece or elsewhere, please contact us below by filling out the form, Thank you.