Greece offers  Financially Independent Visa (FIV) to third country nationals to who are economically independent or self employed.

It is one of the cheapest alternative to Greek golden visa scheme, only a few foreigners know of, as it requires only €50,000 to show in your bank account, instead of golden visa which have to buy a property for €250,000 plus taxes.

Benefits

  • Cheapest Greek residency with low investment
  • Attractive for retirees and pensioners who want to live in Greece
  • Free movement in schengen area with residence permits issued by Greece
  • Startups, small business owners and entrepreneurs can benefit with this scheme.
  • FIV leads to permanent residency after 5 years of living
  • No requirement to live permanently in Greece
  • Access to health care and free education

According to Art. 20 of the Law on Immigration and Social Integration (4251/2014) (former Article 24 of Law 3386/2005) citizens of third countries and members of their families wishing to retire in Greece or otherwise live in Greece without working, can apply for a Greek residence permit based on independent income or funds from outside the country via retirement benefits or a pension, virtual job, business, savings or grants.

Applicants only have to visit Greece once to obtain a residence permit for financially independent persons. Family members can also qualify. There is no requirement to permanently live in Greece with this visa.

The whole procedure takes 10 to 14 weeks or atleast 2-3 months.

FIV vs Golden visa

Here are the important differences between Financially independent visa and Golden visa scheme in Greece.

Financially Independent Visa (FIV)Golden Visa (GV)
Minimum €50,000 (proof of funds) €250,000 in real estate (investment)
Who can qualify?Self Employed / Entrepreneurs / Retirees Investors
Residence permit1-2 years (renewable)PR  5 years (renewable)
Citizenship NaturalizationAfter 7 yearsAfter 7 years
Physical residenceNo requirement to liveNo requirement to live
EligibilityOnly Non-EU nationals can applyNon-EU citizens
Free movementSchengen AreaSchengen Area
Permanent residenceafter 5 yearsimmediate
EU/EEA citizenscannot applycannot apply

How much it costs?

  • We recommend main applicant has to show €50,000 to show in your bank account,
  • Applicants only to show living expenses of €2000 per month, Spouse additional 20% (€ 400), and children 15%  (€ 300) for each child.
  • Legal and additional costs: €3,000 (and an extra €1,500 for the spouse and €1,000 per child).

This visa is not an investment visa. You just have to show unspent money from your bank account.

Legal fees€1,000 for the main applicant+ €500 per family member
Power of attorney to the lawyer€100
Application fee€450 per applicant(no fees apply to children under 18 years of age)
Residence permit fee€16 per applicant
Medical insurance€220–740 per year, depending on coverage
Bank account opening fees€750

How to apply?

Apply for D visa (if you are outside Greece or schengen area) or if you already have a schengen visa, our lawyers will help you visit Migration office  to apply for residence permit application.

You will also need to show proof  housing, health coverage and show enough money to live in Greece.

With D visa approved, come to Greece to take your residence permit within 30 days of arrival.

FIV Statistics

Greece has issued a total of 1,418 FIV visas as of April 2019, according to Hellenic migration office report.

The top countries for economic independent visa recipients are

  • Iran – 313
  • Russia – 256
  • United States – 191
  • Albania  – 176
  • Ukraine – 87
  • Turkey – 57
  • Syria – 42

 

Please contact us for a consultation. We work with a law firm in Greece, providing assistance to clients interested in FIV visa