Published
May 22, 2024
Category
Citizenship by investment programs

How to Get Greek Dual Citizenship in 2024?

Obtaining Greek dual citizenship is possible with several methods such as obtaining citizenship by descent, naturalization, marriage, or even acquiring residency by investment (Greek golden visa) and then applying for citizenship. In this article, we will cover how to become a citizen of Greece and comprehensive information about Greece's citizenship requirements, benefits, and opportunities.

Key Takeaways

  • There are several methods to get Greek dual citizenship: the most popular are citizenship by descent, naturalization, marriage, and the Greece Golden Visa. Each of these methods has its own eligibility criteria and requirements.
  • The main benefits of Greek dual citizenship are access to public services in both your hometown and Greece, visa-free travel to a staggering 191 countries around the world, incl. The free movement, settlement in any of the European Member countries as well as inside the entire Schengen areas, property ownership, business opportunities, and cultural connections, only to name a few.

Does Greece allow dual citizenship?

Greece is one of the EU countries that permits dual citizenship. This is especially beneficial for those, who don’t want to lose their current citizenship and at the same time want to enjoy all the rights and privileges of Greek citizenship.

It’s important to mention that the regulations regarding getting Greek citizenship can seem complex. Our specialists are ready to guide individuals considering getting Greek citizenship.

5 Benefits of Greek Dual Citizenship

Greek dual citizenship offers many advantages for its beneficiaries, including:

  • Access to services: Dual citizens have access to a wide range of services not only in their hometown but also in Greece, including healthcare, education, social welfare programs,
  • Global Visa-free travel: Having a Greek passport, you can benefit from visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 191 countries,
  • Property ownership: Greek citizens are eligible to own property in Greece without restrictions, which can be beneficial for investment or retirement purposes,
  • Business opportunities: Greece offers its citizens to visit and do business in EU countries,
  • Cultural connections: Dual citizenship allows individuals to maintain a strong connection to Greek culture, history, and heritage, even if they live abroad.

How to get dual citizenship in Greece? 4 methods to consider

To better understand how to become a Greek citizen, it is best to assess the several paths available. The most popular ones are:

Obtaining a Greece Golden Visa

The Greece Golden Visa is a residency-by-investment program allowing non-EU citizens to obtain Greek residency through investments in real estate or other assets. After having a residency permit for 7 years, you are eligible to apply for Greek citizenship. 

You can invest in Greece's golden visa program by choosing one of these options:

Real Estate Investment Options:

  • Minimum €250,000 investment in real estate, except in municipalities in Athens, Thessaloniki, Mykonos, and Santorini. This investment can be in one or across multiple properties. (Important: This investment threshold is about to be increased to €400,000 by the Greek Government by Q4-2024)
  • Minimum €500,000 investment in real estate in municipalities in Athens, Thessaloniki, Mykonos, and Santorini, as of July 31st, 2023. This investment needs to be in one single property. (Important: This investment threshold is about to be increased again, now to €800,000, by the Greek Government by Q4-2024)
  • 10 years of a lease agreement, whether signed for hotel accommodations or furnished tourist residences in integrated tourist resorts.

Other Investment Options:

Minimum €400,000 investment in 

  • Greek government bonds,
  • Bonds or shares of real estate investment companies in Greece,
  • Shares and bonds of venture funds and private equity firms headquartered in Greece.

Greek citizenship by descent

If you’re born in Greece, you may become a Greek citizen, with minimal requirements, even if your parents don’t have Greek citizenship. But what if you were born outside of Greece?

Greek dual citizenship can be obtained if at least one of your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents were Greek. Technically there is no limitation to how many generations back you can go to prove your connection with Greek. But in practice, proving a family connection becomes much more difficult when you go further back into your family tree.

Greek Citizenship by Naturalization

Greek citizenship by naturalization is the process by which an individual becomes a Greek citizen after living in Greece legally as a permanent resident for a minimum of seven years and meets certain eligibility criteria. This pathway allows individuals who have chosen Greece as their adopted home to integrate into Greek society by embracing its language, culture, and values. 

Greek Citizenship by Marriage

Greek dual citizenship is possible to obtain by marrying a Greek citizen. However, you don’t obtain citizenship straight after marriage. Certain criteria and steps need to be met. We’ll talk about it later in this article.

Eligibility Criteria and Requirements

After talking about the 4 most popular methods of obtaining Greece dual citizenship, it’s time to go into detail and understand the eligibility criteria and requirements for each method.

Obtaining a Greece Golden Visa

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Be a non-EU/EEA country citizen,
  • Be at least 18 years of age,
  • Have a clean criminal record,
  • Have medical insurance for yourself and your family,
  • Be of good character.

Requirements:

  • Two copies of the application form,
  • 4 recent, colored passport pictures following the Schengen Visa photo requirements,
  • A certified copy of all the pages of the valid passport,
  • Certified proof of an active Schengen Visa (if applicable) for applicants and their family members,
  • Certified evidence of active Greek health insurance for all applicants and their family members,
  • Certified proof of payment of processing fees and relevant government fees,
  • Proof of sufficient funds in bank accounts,
  • Notarized real estate purchasing agreement or documents related to the investment that can be used as proof of completion of the investment.

Greek citizenship by descent

Eligibility Criteria and Requirements:

  • Evidence of Greek ethnicity or lineage, such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, baptism certificates, or other documentation proving Greek ancestral roots, along with any additional supporting documents verifying Greek heritage,
  • Official documents from the ancestor's municipality in Greece,
  • Officially translated and legally certified marriage certificate of the applicant's parents,
  • Proof of the applicant's residence in Greece,
  • Military service records, if applicable,
  • Passport copies of the applicant and their parents or grandparents,
  • Apostilled birth certificate,
  • Recent apostilled clean criminal record certificate issued within the last 6 months.

Greek Citizenship by Naturalization

Eligibility Criteria and Requirements:

  • Application form for naturalization of a person of Greek ethnic origin (must be completed in Greek - downloadable here),
  • A valid passport and one ID-type photo,
  • Applicant's birth certificate duly legalized and officially translated into Greek (translations accepted only by the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs-Translation Services or a Greek lawyer in Greece),
  • Birth and Marriage Certificates of parents and Greek ancestors (duly legalized and officially translated),
  • Baptism certificates (if available, with an official translation into Greek if required),
  • Registration of Greek ancestors with a Greek Municipality or military records (for male ancestors),
  • Recent Criminal Record Certificate (by ACRO Criminal Records Office) of the applicant (with Apostille and official translation into Greek),
  • Any other document supporting the application and demonstrating the applicant’s Greek ethnic origin (e.g., old Greek passports, attendance at Greek schools or Greek language courses, church certificates, participation in Greek communities overseas, registration with consular records, etc.),
  • This process also includes an interview with the applicant at the Consular Office.

Greek Citizenship by Marriage

Eligibility Criteria and Requirements:

  • Meeting a minimum period of marriage, normally ranging from three to five years,
  • Establishing a period of residency in Greece, often set at a minimum of three years,
  • Providing a marriage certificate as proof of the marital union,
  • Providing evidence of residency in Greece,
  • Demonstrating Greek language skills,
  • Complying with any additional requirements set by Greek authorities.

Application Process for Citizenship by Investment Program

The most popular investment program for obtaining dual citizenship in Greece is about acquiring a Greek Golden Visa. We’ve already listed the eligibility criteria and requirements for this program, so let’s dive into the application process.

Step 1: Consult with an agency and select your property

During the first stage, it’s important to choose the investment criteria and property that meets the minimum investment amount (€250,000 or €500,000, depending on the location). The team at Mirabello Consulting Agency is ready to assist you in finding the ideal property from a range of Greece Golden Visa properties available.

Step 2: Complete legal procedures

There are several key steps in this phase, each playing a critical role in obtaining a Greece  Golden Visa. First, you'll need to obtain a Greek Non-Resident Tax number, which is a fundamental requirement for any financial transactions or investments in Greece. Opening a Greek bank account is also preferable, as it demonstrates your commitment to investing and residing in the country. Additionally, you may choose to execute a power of attorney, granting someone else the authority to act on your behalf in specific legal or financial matters related to your Golden Visa application. Consider Mirabello Consultancy, your trusted partner, who will arrange everything to be worry-free.

Step 3: Finalize property acquisition

Finalizing the acquisition of your chosen property in Greece is an important step towards obtaining your Golden Visa. Our expert lawyers will conduct a thorough 'Legal Due Diligence' on the property to ensure that it meets all legal requirements. Once this is completed satisfactorily, you will proceed to acquire the promissory sale and purchase agreement, outlining the terms of the transaction. Finally, you will execute a public deed, officially transferring ownership of the property to you.

Step 4: Initiate the application process

Initiating the application process for your Greece Golden Visa requires the preparation of all necessary documents. This includes gathering personal identification documents, proof of investment funds, a valid passport, health insurance coverage, and any other required paperwork. Ensuring that all documents are complete and in order is crucial for a smooth application process and government submission. You don’t need to worry about this process as our agency will help you stay organized and make sure everything is properly prepared.

Step 5: Submit your data

Once the government has approved the application documentation and eligibility of all applicants, including the investment property, they will request the submission of the applicant's biometric data. This is a key requirement in the application process for the Greece Golden Visa. This stage involves providing your fingerprints and possibly other biometric information to the relevant Greek authorities. This data is used to verify your identity and process your application. This step is completed physically in Greece by all the applicants.

Step 6: Receive your Greece Golden Visa approval

Upon completion of the previous steps, your Golden Visa application will be finalized and fully approved, leading to the issuance of a valid Greece Golden Visa for five years. After that, you can extend your residence permit for 2 more years. Having a 7-year residence permit allows you to apply for Greek citizenship.

Conclusion

In this article we’ve talked about Greek dual citizenship, answered the most popular questions such as how to apply for Greek citizenship, what are the most effective methods, the eligibility criteria and requirements, and highlighted the benefits of Greek citizenship. Depending on which works best for you, you may try to prove Greek heritage, make an investment, meet residency and language proficiency requirements, and submit various documents for verification. By following all the necessary procedures, individuals can successfully acquire Greek dual citizenship and enjoy its benefits.

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