On September 3, 2021, the Greek Parliament, by a large majority, voted in favor of the legislation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Immigration Policy for the establishment of Digital Nomads Visa with the ultimate goal of attracting investors & digital nomads. In particular, the right of national visa is introduced to third country nationals (self-employed, freelancers or employees – “digital nomads”) and their family members, who enter the country for a specific purpose (remote work using Information and Communication Technologies, with employers or clients outside Greece) and for a period of stay of up to twelve months, with the possibility of obtaining a residence permit (addition of case ie in par. 1 of article 18 of law 4251/2014)
METHOD OF ACQUISITION (Procedure – Prerequisites)
The national visa is issued to the interested party, if the applicant submits in person or sends by e-mail or registered letter to the competent Greek consular authority, which is obliged to respond within ten (10) days of the relevant request of the interested party and to complete the process of issuing the visa in “one position of the interested party”, except for the general supporting documents as defined in the ministerial decision of par. 16 of article 136, the following:
- a) a solemn declaration stating his intention to reside in the country with the national entry visa for the provision of distance work and his commitment not to provide any work or services or work to an employer based in Greece;
- b) an employment or work contract or proof of employment with an employer, natural or legal person, who is established outside the Greek territory, for an indefinite period or in the case of a fixed-term contract with a residual duration covering the period of the national visa issued, or
- c) employment or work contracts of indefinite duration or, in the case of a fixed-term employment contract, with a remaining duration covering the period of validity of the visa issued, in case the third country national is self-employed with more than one employer established outside Greece ,
(d) information on the status of applicant in the undertaking, as well as information on the name, registered office, field of activity and corporate purpose of the undertaking in the event that the third-country national is self-employed in his or her own undertaking, which is outside of the Greek territory,
(e) evidence that he has sufficient resources, at a stable income level, to cover his living expenses during his stay in the country, without being burdened by the national social welfare system. The amount of sufficient resources is set at three and a half thousand (3,500) euros per month and is evidenced i) by the employment or project contract or proof of employment, in the case of dependent work, services or project or ii) by bank account. If sufficient resources come from paid employment services, services or work, the above minimum amount refers to net income after payment of the required taxes in the country of employment. The above amount is increased by twenty percent (20%) for the spouse or cohabitant and by fifteen percent (15%) for each child. The amount of sufficient resources may be redefined by the joint ministerial decision referred to in Article 136,
- g) national visa fee of seventy five (75) euros.
- The above third-country nationals may be accompanied by their family members, who are granted, upon request, an individual visa which expires at the same time as the dependent visa. During their stay in Greece, the spouse or partner and family members of the breadwinner are not allowed to provide dependent work or to engage in any form of economic activity in the country. Family members are: a) the other spouse or cohabitant with whom the third-country national has entered into a cohabitation agreement, b) the unmarried joint children of the spouses or cohabitants under the age of eighteen (18) years, including those who have been legally adopted by a foreign court decision that is automatically enforceable or has been declared enforceable or has been recognized in Greece; and c) other, under eighteen (18) years of age, unmarried children of the sponsor or other spouse or cohabitant, if custody has been legally assigned to the sponsor’s children, and to the other children of the spouse spouses or cohabitants to him / her.
iii. If the conditions of circumstance i) continue to apply, the third-country national and his / her family members may be granted a two-year residence permit upon application submitted before the expiry of the national visa. This license does not provide the right to dependent work or independent economic activity of any kind in Greece, both for the breadwinner and for his / her spouse or partner and family members, and can be renewed every two years, if the conditions continue to be met. The application is submitted to the one-stop service of the Ministry of Immigration and Asylum.
- The application of the guardian for the issuance of the residence permit of case iii) is accompanied by a fee of one thousand (1,000) euros, while the members of his family submit the fee provided by this, as family members of the third country citizen.
- In case the third country citizen, as well as his family members, leave the Greek territory and the validity of the national visa expires, both the conservator and his family members have the opportunity to apply and receive it again.
- Periods of absence from the country do not hinder the renewal of the residence permit, as long as they do not exceed six (6) months per year.
vii. By way of derogation from the above, a third-country national, as well as his family members, who meet the conditions of circumstance i) and have entered the Greek territory, either with a uniform visa or with a visa waiver regime, have the possibility, within of this period of validity, to submit to the one-stop service of the Ministry of Immigration and Asylum an application for the issuance of a residence permit of case iii). In this case and without prejudice to article 6, in addition to the supporting documents of case i), the applicants also submit a residence lease or a contract for the purchase of real estate in the Greek Territory. ”