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To support the country's economy, Malta, located south of Italy in the Mediterranean Sea, is offering Maltese citizenship, i.e. the Malta passport, considered one of the strongest in the world, to foreign investors.
Malta citizens can benefit from a wide range of world-class social services, including free education and healthcare. Because Malta is a member of the European Union (EU), a passport from Malta conveys rights and privileges similar to the passports of Germany, France, or any other EU country. As such, Malta passport holders may live, work or study in any country belonging to the European Union.
International business executives, investors, VIPs as well as affluent citizens worldwide consider Malta citizenship a powerful asset and safety net should the living conditions at home become unfavorable, or to obtain a prestigious second passport to facilitate international travel. Because Malta allows dual citizenship, most applicants retain the citizenship of their home country in addition to receiving a second passport from Malta (EU).
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Malta's citizenship by investment program, the "Malta Naturalisation
for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment Regulations",
also referred to as the "Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalisation
(MEIN)", requires three main types of expenses: government-mandated
investments/donations, government application fees, and service
provider legal fees.
The applicant makes the required investments after receiving the citizenship approval in principle, and residing in Malta continuously during or after the residency period is not a requirement to receive citizenship.
The total number of citizenship certificates granted is limited to 400 per year. Please contact us to receive a detailed quotation.
Many affluent citizens around the world consider the passport of an EU member country a powerful tool for international tax planning and to provide their families with a better quality of life.
Because Malta allows dual citizenship, most applicants retain the citizenship of their home country in addition to receiving a second passport from Malta (EU).
Applicants realize that the Maltese citizenship can provide several benefits, including:
The Malta citizenship program extends to the entire family for future generations. This includes not only the main applicant but also a spouse or long-term partner (of any gender), children, parents, and grandparents. All family members covered by the program have the freedom to travel, reside, and work without constraints within the European Union.
Malta citizens and their affiliated companies enjoy the advantage of being able to seamlessly offer their products and services throughout the European Union member states. This unrestricted market access provides a significant opportunity for business expansion and collaboration within the EU, fostering economic growth and enhancing the competitive edge of Maltese entrepreneurs and enterprises on the European stage.
Holders of a Malta passport benefit from a range of financial and investment opportunities within the European Union. With the privilege of being able to transfer funds seamlessly between EU member states, Malta passport holders have the flexibility to manage their finances efficiently across borders. Additionally, they enjoy the freedom to purchase property in any EU country of their choice, providing them with diverse real estate investment options and the ability to establish residences according to personal preferences.
Malta stands out as a compelling financial center, drawing attention
for its highly advantageous tax system and strategic geographical
position at the nexus of three continents – Europe, Africa, and
Asia. The combination of these factors makes Malta an ideal destination
for individuals and businesses seeking favorable tax conditions
and a strategic location for international trade and commerce.
The favorable tax system in Malta encompasses various incentives and exemptions, contributing to the nation's appeal as a financial hub. Applicants are advised to secure the services of an independent tax specialist. Should you require assistance in this regard, we would be glad to facilitate an introduction to reputable tax specialists familiar with Malta's tax landscape.
Holders of Malta residency or citizenship enjoy an elevated standard
of living, attributed to their access to esteemed private schools,
reliable private medical facilities, and Malta's standing with one
of the lowest crime rates in Europe. In Malta, a harmonious coexistence
prevails among multiple cultures, fostering a peaceful and inclusive
community. The unpolluted air, codified property rights, and the
freedom of expression contribute to the well-rounded quality of
life that residents and citizens experience in Malta.
Because of the country's history as a former British colony the Maltese school system reflects the British structure. There are two school categories: state schools and private schools. State schools are free to all students (including free transportation and free books), while private schools such as international schools charge tuition fees. Attending the renowned University of Malta for an undergraduate or graduate/post-graduate degree is free for Malta citizens and their children.
Possessing a Malta passport offers a range of travel advantages,
eliminating the need for a visa when traversing within the European
Union. This facilitates seamless travel experiences for Malta passport
holders, allowing them to explore the diverse landscapes, cultures,
and opportunities that the EU member states have to offer. Additionally,
Malta passport holders also enjoy visa-free travel to numerous non-EU
countries, providing them with global mobility and accessibility.
Step #1: Application Start
The applicant retains our government-licensed immigration attorney to represent him/her throughout the application procedure.
Step #2: Residency Application
The applicant receives Malta residency status. Residency is issued in about two weeks and is valid for up to 36 months.
Step #3: Citizenship Eligibility Application
The Malta government determines if the applicant is eligible for Malta citizenship.
Step #4: Citizenship Application
Upon eligibility approval, the government processes the citizenship application and issues a conditional Approval in Principle.
Step #5: Investments
Upon citizenship approval, the applicant makes all required investments and fulfills all conditions, such as renting or buying a property.
Step #6: Oath of Allegiance
The applicant takes the oath and receives the Certificate of Naturalization / Malta passport.
The following are select questions frequently asked about the Maltese citizenship by investment program. If you don't find your answers here, please contact us at your convenience. Click here for a long version of all FAQs.
Q: Are your attorneys licensed by the Malta government?
A: Yes. Our immigration attorneys are licensed "Authorized Registered Mandatories" as designated by the Government of Malta (Aġenzija Komunita' Malta). Applicants are not permitted to file residency or citizenship applications themselves due to the complexities involved in preparing all government-mandated application forms.
Applications may only be submitted to the Malta government by
an agent licensed by the Community Malta Agency. Feel free to
peruse the profiles of our
Q: What is the minimum investment required to obtain
the Malta citizenship?
A: Applicants under the Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment Regulation are required to make a one-time financial commitment in support of the economic development of Malta.
Citizenship is available to qualified investors for a contribution, meaning a non-refundable donation, in the amount of EUR 600,000 (36 months residency option) or EUR 750,000 (12 months residency option) plus government application charges and legal fees.
In addition, the main applicant must make a philanthropic donation in the amount of EUR 10,000 to a registered philanthropic, cultural, sport, scientific, animal welfare or artistic non-governmental organization.
Further, the main applicant must establish a residence in Malta through either (a) purchasing real estate valued at no less than EUR 700,000 or (b) renting a property at no less than EUR 16,000 per year.
NOTE: The contribution/investment needs to be made only after the government has issued the Citizenship Approval in Principle. In other words, no investments need to be made before the citizenship application is approved.
Please use our contact form to receive a detailed cost estimate.
Q: How will new citizens be taxed?
A: In general, Malta taxation is only based on domicile (your permanent home), and not on residency or citizenship status.
Under Maltese Law, at birth you automatically acquire your domicile status (Domicile of Origin) from your father. If your father later changes his domicile to a new location (Domicile of Choice), yours automatically changes to this new location as well. On attaining the age of 18, you are allowed to acquire a new domicile of choice, but there is no such requirement.
This means if you don’t make Malta your domicile, then only income and capital gains generated from activities inside Malta are fully taxable. Income arising outside of Malta and not sent to Malta is not taxable. In addition, capital gains arising outside of Malta even if brought into Malta are not taxable for non-domiciled residents.
In other words, tax is due only on (a) income generated inside of Malta, (b) capital gains arising inside of Malta, and (c) income generated outside of Malta and remitted to Malta.
Other Tax Considerations:
Because taxation is a serious matter, we recommend conferring with your trusted tax advisor.
Q: Can I include my family with my Malta citizenship
A: Yes. The main applicant for Maltese citizenship may include a spouse or long-term partner (gender neutral), children under 18 years of age, financially dependent adult children under the age of 29, and parents and grandparents over the age of 55.
Q: Will my citizenship expire?
A: No. When you acquire Malta citizenship you and your family enjoy full citizenship for life, which can be passed on to future generations by descent.
Q: Do I need to move to Malta or live in Malta for a
minimum number of days during the year to qualify for residency
A: No. Applicants do not need to move to Malta or live in the country for a full year to satisfy the one year (or three year) residency requirement when applying for citizenship. Instead, an applicant can meet the requirement by proving a genuine link with Malta as evidenced by, for example, several visits per year, showing water and electricity bills, having a club membership, engaging in any business activity in Malta, and similar. Our attorneys will assist you to be in full compliance with Maltese regulations.
Q: How long does the application processing take until
I get citizenship?
A: In general, application processing can take as little as 12 to 18 months. The Malta citizenship application process is performed in two stages: the first stage is Malta residency, the second stage is Malta citizenship.
The residency stage takes approximately 15 working days to process, after which residency status is conferred upon the applicant. The main applicant and any dependents are provided with an E-Residence document which is equivalent to a Schengen Visa, granting Malta residency and borderless travel to all Schengen countries.
After you receive residency status your assigned attorney will work with you on preparing your citizenship eligibility application. The application can be filed immediately after you have been in residency status for 12 months or 36 months, depending on your choice of investment option.
Lastly, processing times also depend on how fast the applicant can provide supporting documentation.
Q: Can you help me find suitable real estate in Malta?
A: Yes. Feel free to browse available properties with pictures and prices on our Malta real estate page.
In addition, we offer a full range of professional real estate services to buyers; please request our "Malta Real Estate Services" brochure for details.
Further, we are associated with licensed real estate agencies and developers in Malta and can help you find a property that fulfills all application requirements. We will ensure that your preferred property meets the minimum standards of your residency or citizenship application as many properties currently do not meet these requirements. Having rented or bought a property that does not meet the government regulation can lead to a lot of frustration and additional expenses when trying to bring such a property up to code.
Our professional relationships in Malta guarantee to our clients a smooth, comprehensive service that includes identifying suitable properties, providing transport for property viewings, drafting/reviewing legal contracts, and/or liaising with local notaries and architects as needed.
When you decide on a property for purchase we can set up a Power of Attorney to appear on your behalf without the need for you to travel to Malta to finalize the transaction.
Q: How soon can I sell my Malta real estate?
A: The property needs to be held for five years. After this period, property in Malta can be sold completely exempt from tax if it has been held for three years as the resident’s sole and ordinary residence. If the property is sold before having been used as the resident’s sole residence for three years, a final property tax of 12% is chargeable on the selling price.
Q: Do I need to invest in a Malta company and create
jobs to qualify for the program?
A: No. Unlike other programs such as the EB-5 Investor Visa in the United States, Malta has no requirements to invest in a business or create new jobs.
Q: Will the Malta citizenship automatically grant me
A: Yes. Because Malta is a member of the European Union its citizens are automatically European citizens, which means you are allowed to live, work or study anywhere in Europe.
However, please note that the total number of citizenships (total number of passports) the Maltese government has made available under the new regulation is limited to only 400 per year! If you are ready to file an application please contact us for additional information.
Q: What is the difference between the Naturalisation
for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment Regulation and
the Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP)?
A: The Malta Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment Regulation (Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalisation / MEIN) is a program that offers qualified applicants, including EU nationals and non-EU nationals, Malta residency and citizenship (the Malta passport) in return for a one-time contribution to the Malta economy as outlined in the section "Investment Amounts and Fees" above.
The Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP), on the other hand, leads to permanent residency, meaning the permission to live in Malta as long as desired, and visa-free travel to all European countries within the Schengen area for 90 out of 180 days. The application process usually takes 4 to 6 months, but it does not lead to the Maltese (EU) citizenship or the Malta passport. Residents may file a citizenship application after 6 years in residency status, but there is no guarantee that an approval will be granted, and approvals typically take 10 to 15 years.
For additional information about Malta's residency programs please visit our Malta Residency page.
Q: What is Malta's position on fintech / crypto-currency / blockchain
A: Malta is fast establishing itself as the premier destination for cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. The government's regulatory framework will cover traders, asset management, and exchange platforms, thus making Malta the world’s friendliest jurisdiction for the sector. Our associated crypto / blockchain professionals are published experts in this field who can advise you on best practices for fintech-related topics in Malta. Please use our fintech contact form for additional information.
Q: What does "Schengen Area" mean?
A: Malta residency/citizenship allows you to travel without restrictions across the "Schengen Area" of the European Union. The Schengen zone is a group of 26 European countries that have abolished passport and immigration controls at their common borders. It functions as a single country for international travel purposes, with a common visa policy. Source: Wikipedia
Q: Will I be able to travel to the United States with
the Malta passport?
A: Yes. The Malta passport will allow you to travel to the U.S. under the visa waiver program which allows citizens of participating countries to travel to the United States without a visa for stays of 90 days or less. Source: U.S. Government
Please contact us for a detailed cost estimate or confidential consultation in person, or by phone, Zoom, or email. Our attorneys are ready to assist you with attaining your investment objectives and answer any questions you might have about immigrating to Malta.
Residency & Citizenship by Investment
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