Overseas property

Greek residence permit by marriage in 2023

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In recent years, Greece has become a popular European destination, attracting a diverse group of visitors from all over the world. This influx has led to an increase in the number of international marriages between Greeks and foreigners. The country’s openness and hospitality have created a favourable atmosphere for establishing connections and relationships between different cultures.

Probably the quickest, easiest and cheapest way to obtain a residence permit in Greece is to marry a Greek national. Obtaining a residence permit through marriage allows a family to live together permanently in one country. This is particularly beneficial if one of the spouses is a foreigner.

A Greek residence permit for a spouse is an excellent way to gain the right to live and work in a prosperous EU country, as well as to study its rich culture and heritage.

Obtaining a Greek residence permit for cohabitation

One of the ways to obtain a residence permit is to enter into a cohabitation agreement.

A cohabitation agreement is a legal relationship between two people who live together and support each other.

Both partners in a cohabitation agreement in Greece must be unmarried and not bound by any other legal arrangements.

Once a cohabitation agreement has been signed, the foreign partner begins the process of applying for a residence permit in Greece. In order to successfully complete the application, it is necessary to provide evidence of actual residence in Greece, as well as financial stability and the absence of violations of Greek law.

To enter into a cohabitation agreement, the applicant does not need to apply for a national visa; a tourist visa is sufficient.

Documents required to apply for a cohabitation agreement:

  1. A notarised agreement and cohabitation certificate. This document confirms your marital status and the existence of a legal relationship between you and your partner.
  2. A family membership certificate showing the presence or absence of children in your family.
  3. Health insurance policy. You will need to prove that you have adequate medical cover to obtain a residence permit.
  4. A document confirming your address: a rental contract or a certificate from the owner of the property.
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Obtaining a Greek residence permit by marriage

You must register your marriage before submitting documents for a residence permit.

A national visa is not required to get married in Greece; a Greek tourist visa or biometric passport is sufficient. Marriages are registered in the presence of two witnesses at the municipality where one of the spouses resides.

The following documents are required to register a marriage in Greece:

  1. An apostilled birth certificate. This document confirms your identity and is required to prove that you are of legal age to marry.
  2. Any additional documents relating to a change of surname or previous marriage. If you have previously married or changed your surname, you will need to provide apostilled certificates to confirm these changes.
  3. A certificate stating that you are not yet married. You can obtain this from your country’s consulate in Greece.

Obtaining a Greek residence permit for family reunification

A Greek citizen or a foreigner who legally resides in the country can bring their family with them.

To qualify, you must be the spouse, child (including unmarried adult children), parent or domestic partner of a Greek citizen or permanent resident.

The process of obtaining a residence permit for family reunification begins by submitting an application for a residence permit to the relevant Greek immigration authorities.

A residence card is issued after entry with a national type D visa. The time frame for obtaining a residence permit for family reunification is 1–3 months. A long-term type D visa allows the holder to enter and stay in Greece for more than 3 months.

After reviewing the application for a residence permit for family reunification, the Greek immigration authorities will decide whether to grant or refuse the permit.

Documents required to obtain a Greek residence permit by marriage

In order to obtain a residence permit by marriage, you must meet a number of requirements and provide the following documents:

  1. Application for a residence permit. This is the main document required to obtain any type of residence permit in Greece.
  2. Passport or other document proving your identity.
  3. Certificate of marriage to a Greek national.
  4. Birth certificate.
  5. Certificate of no criminal record (for both spouses). These documents certify that neither you nor your spouse have any problems with the law.
  6. Proof of financial stability. This may be a certificate of employment, recent bank statement, rental agreement or any other relevant document that shows you have sufficient funds to live in Greece.
  7. Medical documents. In some cases, a medical examination may be required.
  8. 4 colour photographs (35×45 mm).

Validity of a Greek residence permit by marriage

Normally, a residence permit based on marriage is valid for a maximum of 5 years.

To extend a residence permit based on marriage in Greece, you must contact the Greek immigration authorities 3 months before the expiry date of the document. To renew your residence permit, you must meet all the requirements set by the Greek government. These usually include requirements for work, study, sufficient means of subsistence and documents confirming these facts.

In the event of a breach of Greek law, the residence permit may be revoked and the applicant will be forced to leave the country.

Benefits of a Greek residence permit by marriage

This type of residence permit has a number of benefits, which are listed below:

1. Right to work and business opportunities

One of the main benefits of obtaining a Greek residence permit by marriage is the right to work on equal terms with Greek citizens. This means that you can find a job in Greece and earn the same salary as Greek nationals. In addition, holders of a Greek residence permit by marriage can also start a business in Greece, invest and contribute to the growth and development of the Greek economy.

2. Right to study

Another benefit of a Greek residence permit by marriage is the opportunity to study at any educational institution in Greece on an equal basis with local students.

3. Healthcare

Holders of a Greek residence permit by marriage have the same right to healthcare as Greek citizens. They can consult doctors in public and private clinics and receive free or almost free medical care.

4. Simplified entry

Holders of a Greek residence permit by marriage have the right to enter and leave Greece without the need to obtain a visa for a certain period of validity of the residence permit.

However, a residence permit does not confer citizenship or the right to vote or to obtain a national passport.

Greece citizenship by marriage

Greece citizenship by marriage is the process of granting Greek citizenship to a foreigner who marries a Greek national. This process is one of the most popular ways to obtain Greek citizenship.

In order to obtain Greece citizenship by marriage, a foreigner must meet certain criteria, namely:

  1. Be the legal spouse of a Greek citizen.
  2. Have a long-term visa or residence permit in the country.
  3. Submit the citizenship application to the local government office within the specified time limit.
  4. Apply for citizenship after 7 years of permanent residence in the country (with marriage certificate, proof of financial support and photographs).

However, apart from the legal requirements, the government’s decision to grant citizenship may be influenced by other factors. For instance, if the foreign spouse has a criminal record or engages in activities that threaten the security of Greece, the application may be rejected.

In general, the process of acquiring Greece citizenship by marriage is relatively straightforward and transparent, provided that the foreigner meets the established criteria.

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