Monaco Residency Advantages
Monaco residency is appealing for many reasons. With its growing economy and political stability, Monaco has much to offer those who choose to live in this beautiful seaside principality. With its reputation for excellent schools, quality healthcare, low crime rates, environmental responsibility, and a family-friendly atmosphere, it’s no wonder that nearly two-thirds of the residents of Monaco are foreigners.
The Monaco Residence Card (Carte de Residence) is highly desirable, especially by High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) and Ultra-High Net Worth Individuals (UHNWIs), mainly for the tax advantages it provides. The Principality of Monaco does not collect capital gains tax or wealth tax. Income tax was abolished in 1869, meaning that most foreigners officially residing in Monaco are exempt from taxes. There are certain exceptions, for example, French nationals must still pay income tax even if they have residency and reside in Monaco full time.
Monaco Residency Requirements
Those who have become enamoured with the charms of the Mediterranean lifestyle in Monaco may soon find themselves investing in real estate so they can take full advantage of the many benefits the country has to offer. Often, people mistakenly believe that purchasing or renting an apartment provides automatic residency. While having a suitable place to live is a necessary part of gaining residency, it is only one of the requirements in the process of becoming an official resident of Monaco.
There are three general conditions that must be met in order to gain a Monaco residence permit. First, one must have a residence that provides suitable living conditions for all family members. The next requirement is to prove a source of income or demonstrate financial stability. The final condition is to provide a copy of a clean criminal record for the previous five years.
Monaco Residence Permit Application Process
Those who are not European Union citizens must first apply for a visa or long-stay permit. This can be done at the French Embassy in Monaco or at a French consulate in the country of residence. Citizens of the European Union do not need a visa to apply for a residence permit.
The next step is to collect the documents required to show suitable accommodations, adequate finances, and proof of identity. Appropriate documents must be in French and may include:
> Evidence of accommodation: Contract, tenancy agreement, most recent electric bill
> Evidence of sufficient funds: A certificate from the Employment Office, proof of pension, reference from a bank, evidence of financial resources
> Proof of identity: Criminal record, passport, identity card, birth certificate.
In addition to the required documentation, there is an application form that needs to be filled out. Forms can be obtained from the Residents Section of the Directorate of Public Security or downloaded from the Public Services section of the Monaco Government website.
The final step in the application process is to schedule an appointment with the Residents Section. During the interview, all documentation will be reviewed and verified. If the necessary documentation is in order and the request is approved, a residence permit will be issued.
Maintaining Residency and Obtaining Citizenship
After an application is approved, the first Monaco residency card, Monaco Carte de Resident Temporaire, is issued and must be renewed each year for the first three years. Then a Monaco Carte de Resident Ordinaire is issued with renewal required only every three years. After ten years, it is possible to apply for Carte Privilege, a permit for long-term residency. If long-term residency is not granted the applicant can continue to renew the three-year resident’s card. Even if all criteria are met, the Principality does have the right to refuse a residence permit.
Before purchasing or renting property in Monaco, it is advisable to consult with a local lawyer or a consulting firm regarding the intent to apply for residency. Local real estate agents also have an understanding of the process. At Monaco Estate, we offer to our clients a complimentary evaluation with an experienced Monaco lawyer.