A beautiful and culturally rich country, Greece attracts many foreign nationals who are so enchanted by it that they decide to relocate permanently. If you are interested in moving to Greece from the UK, you can read this short guide drawn up by our immigration lawyer in Greece. While Britons are in no need of a visa to enter Greece (right now, they can come to the country for tourist purposes only by using identification documents), the requirements for living in the country differ and all foreign nationals are expected to lawfully stay in the country based on a residence permit.
In this article, we answer some of the most commonly asked questions by those who are interested in moving to Greece from UK.
What are the types of residence permits for UK nationals in Greece?
Moving to Greece from UK implies a set of steps and interested individuals should first decide on the reason for the lengthy stay.
One of our immigration lawyers in Greece can provide you with detailed information about the special requirements in any of the following cases:
- Work: when you have been offered a job by a Greek company or are interested in an intra-corporate transfer as well as for researchers and other professionals.
- Study: moving to Greece from the UK can be interesting for students who wish to take Greek history courses and have been accepted by a higher education institute in the country.
- Investment: for those who are interested in starting an independent economic activity; please note that this is different from the golden visa that at the moment only applies to non-EU nationals; it remains to be seen how this will apply to UK nationals after the Brexit.
- Family reunification: moving to Greece from the UK can be important for the family members (spouse, parent, or child) who wishes to reunite with an individual who is already living in the country.
Please feel free to reach out to our Greece immigration agents for more detailed information about each of these residence permits and the required documents.
What are the general requirements for staying in Greece long-term?
All foreign nationals who plan to stay in Greece for more than three months are expected to apply for the right type of residence permit with the Greek Embassy or Consulate General in their country of origin before they arrive. This means that an individual who is interested in moving to Greece from UK will start the process before actually arriving in Athens or another city of choice. Our team can help guide you along the way so that the application process runs as smoothly as possible and that you submit all of the requested documents. One should remember that while some documents are general ones (like a valid passport as well as a UK criminal record), others will depend on the chose reason for the prolonged stay, such as the employment contract or the University letter of acceptance.
How does the Brexit affect UK residents living in Greece?
The Withdrawal Agreement stipulates a number of terms and sets forth a transition period until the end of December 2020. UK nationals who are in Greece until this date can continue to work or study as they did before the commencement of the withdrawal.
Once the United Kingdom has finished the procedures to exit the European Union, those who are Greek residents at the end of the transition period will continue to have their rights protected. One of our immigration lawyers in Greece can help answer any questions you may have during this transition period as well as aid you in renewing your residence permit, based on your reason to stay in the country, so that you will be within your rights.
Our lawyers can also help foreign nationals from the UK, as well as other countries, understand all of the compliance requirements once they start living in the country. We can provide detailed information about the taxation requirements for individuals set forth by the Ministry of Finance as well as other requirements that are of interest to all residents.
According to a survey performed by Eurostat, the distribution of British citizens who were living in Greece in 2016 was the following:
- 75.3% were between the ages of 15 and 64;
- 19.5% were 65 years old and over this age;
- 5.3% were younger than 15 years of age.
According to data compiled using Eurostat figures, there were 785,000 British nationals living in other EU countries, apart from Ireland.
If you are interested in knowing more about moving to Greece from the UK, as well as the protection of rights after the Brexit, please reach out to our lawyers. We can help answer your immigration questions and guide you along the way.
Our team can also assist British nationals who are interested in acquiring Greek citizenship, after the minimum mandatory period of three years of legal residence in the country. Other relevant criteria are applicable and we recommend reaching out to our agents for more information.
Contact our Greece immigration specialists for more information and personalized assistance if you are interested in moving to Greece from the UK.