High-earning individuals, investors, and retirees can obtain permanent residency in the 10th smallest country in the world with the Malta Permanent Residency Programme.
Officially called the Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP), this visa allows qualified investors to gain permanent residency in Malta with an approved real estate investment.
It is important to note that the government previously offered a citizenship-by-investment program, but has since ended in 2021.
With English being an official language, Malta is one of the most welcoming and smart countries to obtain permanent residence. With favorable tax systems, gorgeous island views, efficient infrastructure, and an all-around comfortable place to live, the Malta Permanent Residency Programme is a no-brainer for many global citizens.
Overall, the application process can take from four to six months if applicants have submitted everything correctly.
If you aren’t sure whether Malta is right for you and your family, you can live in the country temporarily with the Nomad Residence Permit and work remotely for up to three years.
By the end of this article, you’ll know exactly how to apply for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme, the investment requirements, and the benefits that come with the MPRP. Plus, we’re sharing the number one helpful tip to getting your permanent residence in Malta smoothly and efficiently.
Benefits of the Malta Permanent Residency Programme
Besides obtaining permanent residency in Malta, the Malta Permanent Residency Programme offers so many more benefits that visa holders and their family members can take advantage of.
Visa-Free Travel in Schengen
While holding a permanent residence permit through the Malta Permanent Residency Programme, applicants may travel visa-free through the 26 Schengen Area countries.
This means you won’t have to apply for separate visas to cross borders into other countries that are part of this agreement. However, the rule of spending 90 days in 180 days still applies to Malta Permanent Residency Programme holders.
Family Reunification for Four Generations
One of the unique aspects of the Malta Permanent Residency Programme is the allowance of family reunification for up to four generations.
This means the grandparents, parents, spouses, and children of the Malta Permanent Residency Programme applicant may benefit from the visa. However, these family members must sign an affidavit that they are dependent on the visa applicant. Applicants may also add dependents after the visa has been granted.
Through family reunification, dependents may receive permanent residency status in Malta through the main applicant.
No Minimum Stay Requirement
Unlike other residency by investment visa programs, Malta does not require applicants to stay in the country for a certain period.
Technically, applicants will only have to visit Malta once to complete their biometrics appointment and receive the residency card. Other than that, applicants can obtain permanent residency and never actually reside in Malta.
However, if applicants plan on applying for citizenship through naturalization, there is a stay requirement.
Favorable Tax Rates
Malta has one of the most favorable tax rate systems in Europe. Many wealthy individuals choose to diversify their assets in Malta for this reason.
One of the major benefits of obtaining the Malta Permanent Residency Programme through investing in property is that there is no annual property tax.
Who is Eligible for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme?
There are a few basic requirements applicants must meet to be eligible to receive permanent residency in Malta by investment.
- Must be a non-EU/EEA or non-Swiss citizen
- Not be a citizen of sanctioned countries
- Have sustainable funds to support their lives in Malta without resorting to government resources
- Have a clean criminal record
- Does not pose a threat to public health, public policy, national security, or public interest
- Show capital assets of at least 500,000€, with at least 150,000€ of financial assets
Of course, applicants must also make the eligible investment requirements in order to apply for the program.
Malta Permanent Residency Programme Investment Requirements
If you meet the above eligibility requirements, then you may move forward with your qualifying investment and apply for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme.
Unlike other visa programs, Malta only offers a qualifying real estate investment option. However, there are options to purchase or rent a property.
Purchasing Property in Malta
One qualifying real estate investment for the MPRP is to purchase property in Malta.
If the property is located in the south of Malta or Gozo, the purchase amount must be at least 300,000€.
If purchasing a property in any other area in Malta, the purchase amount must be 350,000€.
When you purchase a qualifying property for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme, you will have to make a 68,000€ contribution to the government. There is an additional 7,500€ fee for each adult dependent, excluding spouses.
Renting a Property in Malta
If you do not wish to purchase a property in Malta, there is an option to rent one with a five-year lease.
When signing a lease for a property in the south of Malta or Gozo, the rent must be 10,000€ per year.
If renting a property in any other area in Malta, the rent must be equal to 12,000€ per year.
Renting a property in Malta to apply for the MPRP also requires you to pay a 98,000€ contribution to the government. There is an additional 7,500€ fee for each adult dependent, excluding spouses.
Additional Fees and Contributions
Along with purchasing or renting property and the government contribution, there are additional fees and donations applicants must make.
In total, there is a 40,000€ administrative fee paid to the Residency Malta Agency to process your application. 10,000€ of this is to be paid upfront.
Applicants must also make a 2,000€ donation to an NGO registered with the Commissioner of Voluntary Organisations. You can choose from philanthropic, artistic, cultural, sports, scientific, or animal welfare organizations.
How to Apply for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme
One of the special features of the Malta Permanent Residency Programme is the option to make your qualifying investment after you have begun the visa application process.
One important thing to note is that you must work with a registered agent to submit your application, though. Fortunately, Nomads Embassy is here to help connect you with hand-selected immigration lawyers who can help you apply for the program.
Step 1: Choose Your Investment
Since there are only two investment options for the MPRP, choosing your investment is fairly simple. You must decide whether to purchase or rent a property and hold it for at least the next five years.
Of course, there are some areas (South of Malta and Gozo) that offer a discounted investment option on real estate. This is something you may want to consider.
Choosing your investment option does not mean you have to move forward with it immediately. In fact, you will wait until due diligence is complete and your application is approved to make the investment.
Step 2: Find an Immigration Lawyer
The only way to apply for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme is through a registered agent. There are hundreds of lawyers who specialize in the MPRP, but finding the right, reliable one can take some time.
Fortunately, Nomads Embassy has saved you hours of your precious time! We have hand-selected the best immigration lawyers in Malta to work with our readers and assist them in applying for the MPRP to gain permanent residence in Malta.
With competitive rates and excellent customer service, you’ll find the process simple and straightforward. To request a consultation with our immigration lawyer partners, complete the form in this article.
Step 3: Apply for the Malta Permanent Residence Programme
Once you have hired your immigration lawyer, you can begin the MPRP application. Applicants may view the various forms required to apply here.
Upon submitting your application, you must pay 10,000€ of the 40,000€ administrative fee.
Some documents you may be required to submit include:
- Valid passport
- Proof of sufficient funds
- Proof of capital and financial assets
- Employment contracts (if applicable)
- Proof of business ownership (if applicable)
- Birth certificates
- Marriage certificates
- Health insurance coverage in Malta
- Proof of residence abroad
- Clean criminal record
- Dependency affidavit for parents or grandparents (if applicable)
The Residency Malta Agency may request additional documentation during the application process.
Once the application is submitted, the Agency will conduct due diligence to approve or deny it.
Step 4: Attend Biometrics Appointment
When the Malta Permanent Residency Programme application is approved, applicants will receive a Letter of Approval in Principle. Applicants and dependents are required to visit Malta to attend a biometrics appointment where their fingerprints will be collected.
Step 5: Make the Investment
Concluding the biometrics appointment, applicants may move forward with making their qualified investment to complete their permanent residency process.
Upon making the investment, they must also make the necessary donations and contributions as well as pay the rest of the administrative fee.
Step 6: Receive Permanent Residence Permits
Applicants will receive their permanent residence permits shortly after the application process has been completed.
These residency cards are valid for five years and must be renewed at the ID Malta office.
Dependents’ residency permits will expire one month after their birthdays, so it’s important to be aware of when to renew the permits.
Frequently Asked Questions
Applying for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme can be complicated, especially if it is your first time obtaining a visa of any sort. Below are some of the most commonly asked questions.
How Do I Renew My Residence Permit?
During the first five years of permanent residency in Malta, visa holders must maintain their investment and submit documentation of their lease agreements (if applicable) and health insurance policies each year.
To renew the residence permit, holders must visit the ID Malta office and prove they have met the requirements.
How Much Capital Do I Have to Prove?
To be eligible for the Malta Permanent Residency Programme, applicants must prove they have capital assets of at least 500,000€. Of this amount, 150,000€ must be financial assets.
Can I Sell and Purchase Another Property in Malta in the First Five Years?
Yes, Malta Permanent Residency Programme holders may sell and purchase another qualifying property in Malta during the first five years of their permanent residency.
How Much Are the Administration Fees?
To apply for the Malta Permanent Residence Programme, there is a 40,000€ application and processing fee. Applicants may pay this fee via bank transfer.
Upon first submitting the application, 10,000€ of this fee must be paid. The rest may be settled after making the qualifying investment, contributions, and donations.
Of course, it is important to account for the legal fees of the registered agent who will submit the Malta Permanent Residency Programme application too.
How Long Does it Take to Get the MPRP?
The processing time for the Malta Permanent Residence Programme is between four and six months if all of the documents and applications are correct.
Do I Have to be Physically Present in Malta to Hold Residency?
No, there is no minimum stay requirement to keep permanent residency in Malta through the MPRP. However, applicants must visit Malta for their biometrics appointment upon approval of their application.
Will I Owe Taxes in Malta?
If you spend 183 days out of the year in Malta, you will be considered a tax resident and owe local taxes.
It’s important to note that there is no annual property tax, which is a major benefit for applicants planning to purchase property in Malta.
Do I Have to Work with a Lawyer to Apply for the MPRP?
Yes, in order to apply for the Malta Permanent Residence Program, applications must be submitted by a registered agent.