The information found in this article may be of interest to wealthy individuals who would like to legally reside in the Principality of Monaco. Citizens of any country – European or not – are eligible to apply for residence in Monaco. Becoming a tax resident in the country can also bring serious fiscal benefits, as taxes in Monaco are almost non-existent. The country is also perfect for asset protection purposes and is one of the safest places in the world for you and your family.
- Why should a self-sufficient person acquire legal residence in Monaco?
- Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: who is eligible to apply and under what conditions
- Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: what documents need to be submitted by non-EEA residents?
- Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: what documents need to be submitted by EEA residents?
- Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: opening a bank account, acquiring insurance, and integrating with the local community
- Can a foreign national become a full citizen of Monaco?
- Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: what services can you obtain from a licensed immigration agent?
Why should a self-sufficient person acquire legal residence in Monaco?
There are multiple reasons who you should consider relocating to Monaco. Below we quote ten main arguments that support such a move.
- Monaco is an independent European state with stable institutions. The country is politically neutral and it serves as a model for other national states in many respects.
- Monaco has a beneficial tax regime that allows minimizing the fiscal burden. Monacan residents can easily open bank accounts all around the world.
- Monaco has a highly beneficial geographic location at the center of Europe on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The country also has an advanced transportation network and it is easily accessible from anywhere in Europe, via Nice airport.
- A united multicultural community is found in Monaco (people of over 120 nationalities live there in harmony). English is very widely spoken in the country.
- Monaco is a highly popular tourist destination with numerous entertainment facilities, wonderful hotels, and beautiful marinas.
- A great number of sports and cultural events that take place in Monaco on a regular basis can make life in the country extremely entertaining.
- Living in Monaco is perfectly safe as public security is one of the Government’s highest priorities. Besides, educational, medical, and social services in the principality are top notch.
- Monaco applies a unique socio-economic model. The country has no state debt and its budget is balanced. The diversified and easy-to-predict local economy in a combination with a beneficial tax system allows Monaco to prosper. The dynamic labor and consumer markets affect the neighboring countries (France and Italy) in a positive way.
- Government officials in Monaco are easily accessible and they are always willing to cooperate with individuals and legal entities. The authorities in the country will help you solve any issues that might appear.
- The country pursues ecologically sustainable policies and it practices social responsibility.
Be it love at first sight, or some down-to-earth reasons such as tax efficiency – every person who moves to Monaco finds a perfect home there.
Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: who is eligible to apply and under what conditions
Any foreign national above 16 years of age who wants to spend more than three months a year in Monaco has to apply for a residence permit. The permit issuance procedure is governed by the Neighborhood Convention signed between France and Monaco on May 18, 1963 (Convention Franco-Monégasque de Voisinage).
The authorities of the Principality have different requirements for citizens of EEA countries vis-a-vis citizens of all other countries when it comes to obtaining legal residence in Monaco. There are some requirements, however, that are applicable to all foreign nationals wishing to obtain Monegasque resident permits. These include the following ones:
- The applicant shall demonstrate having residential accommodation in Monaco of sufficient size. The applicant can:
- Be the owner of a house or apartment in Monaco; or
- Be the director of a company that owns a house or apartment in Monaco; or
- Rent a house or apartment in Monaco; or
- Live in a house or apartment in Monaco owned by his/ her relative, spouse, or partner.
- The applicant shall also demonstrate having sufficient financial resources. The sources of income can include the following ones:
- A salary; or
- Income from professional activities; or
- Profits from a private business venture; or
- Financial support on the part of another person (a relative, spouse, or partner); or
- A substantial bank deposit (what amount will be deemed sufficient depends on the Monegasque authorities).
- The applicant shall also prove that he or she is a law-abiding person. This means that a police clearance needs to be supplied and separate background checks will be carried out.
Applications for legal residence in Monaco are to be submitted to the Residence Department of the Police. At their website you can find the forms to be filled out in addition to other information. The Department is responsible for the following procedures:
- Processing all documents related to legal residence acquisition (applications for residence, residence permit extension, naturalization documents, etc.) and issuing temporary permits as well as IDs for foreign minors;
- Keeping statistics on foreign residents in Monaco;
- Legalizing signatures and document copies;
- Issuing document loss certificates as well as various documents for administrative purposes such as residence certificates, for instance.
When applying for legal residence in Monaco, you will have to make an appointment with an officer of the Princely Government’s Police Residence Department. When you pay a visit to the Department, your application for residence will be promptly examined and registered. You will be asked to submit the document originals that will be returned to you when the interview is over. If your application is approved, you can pick the residence permit from the same Department. The procedure normally takes not more than six weeks.
The first residence permit that you will acquire is valid for one year only. The holder of this permit does not have any limitations as to the number of days he/ she has to spend in Monaco. The permit issuance fee is € 10.
Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: what documents need to be submitted by non-EEA residents?
The procedure of applying for Monegasque residence can be divided into four steps.
Citizens of non-EEA countries need to obtain a short- or a long-term visa in order to file applications for Monegasque residence.
In case you have been a legal resident in France for over a year, you can apply for transfer of residency via the French embassy in Monaco. If you have not been a legal resident in France for over a year, you need to apply for a D-type (long-term) visa via the French embassy/ consulate closest to you. (You can find a map of French consulates by following this link: http://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/fr/le-ministere-et-son-reseau/annuaires-et-adresses-du-maedi/ambassades-et-consulats-francais-a-l-etranger/ ).
As having residential accommodations of sufficient size is an essential condition for obtaining legal residence in Monaco, you will have to supply proof of owning or renting such accommodation in the principality. You will need to submit one of the following documents:
- If you own a house or an apartment in Monaco, an extract from the property Register or the purchase/ sale agreement. Besides, a recent utility bill may also be required.
- If you are the director of a company that owns residential property in Monaco, you can supply any of the following documents:
- A notarized property ownership certificate (if you are also the owner of the company); or
- The company Charter and a proof of your participation in the company’s registered capital. A document confirming your company directorship is also required.
- If you are renting a house or an apartment in Monaco, bring a rental agreement that has been previously registered with the tax authorities.
- If you live in your relative, spouse, or partner’s house in Monaco, bring a letter of consent from this person to provide housing for you for free as well as one of these documents:
- The rent agreement if this person is renting the house or apartment;
- The property ownership certificate if the house or apartment belongs to the person.
You must also demonstrate having sufficient financial resources to sustain yourself while in Monaco. This can be done by supplying relevant documents. Please bear in mind that if the documents are not in either English or French or Italian, they have to be translated into one of these languages. The following documents can be submitted:
- If you are self-employed or of you are a company manager or director, bring one of the following documents:
- An extract from the Trade and Industry Register confirming the fact; or
- A copy of the Kbis certificate if your company is located in France.
- If you have (or if you are forming) a business in Monaco, bring a confirmation document from the local (Business Development Agency).
- If you are employed in Monaco on an employment agreement, you have to bring a confirmation letter from the local employment office. Note, however, that you cannot become a hired worker in Monaco unless you have a residence permit there. So this document can be used only when extending your residence permit.
- If you are retired, bring documents certifying that you are paid a pension.
- If you receive financial support from a relative, spouse, or partner, you will have to bring a letter from this person that confirms the fact. In addition, documents certifying the availability of financial resources to your sponsor will also be required.
- In other cases, you can bring a bank statement from a Monegasque bank that confirms your having enough money in the account (you will have to discuss this issue with the bank manager).
- If there are other types of documents that can confirm your well-being, the Residence Department will be able to confirm if they are acceptable on a case-by-case basis.
Some additional documents written in English, French or Italian (or translated into one of these languages) are required:
- Valid passport with a long-term Monegasque or French visa;
- French residence permit, if available;
- Children’s birth certificates if you are applying with your family;
- Police clearance (casier judiciaire) issued by the authorities of the last country or two countries in which you have resided in the five years prior to your arrival in Monaco.
- Marriage certificate if you are married;
- A letter from the university if you are a student;
- If you are divorced or separated, you will have to supply one of the following documents:
- Divorce certificate; or
- Court-ordered separation certificate.
- The following documents are required for children under 16:
- Passport or another ID;
- Child custody certificate, if applicable;
- Child adoption certificate, if applicable;
- Education certificates, if applicable.
Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: what documents need to be submitted by EEA residents?
Naturally, obtaining a legal residence permit in Monaco is simpler if you are a citizen of an EEA country. You can skip the first step completely even though you will have to meet all the necessary conditions anyway.
This simplified scheme for acquiring Monegasque residence is available to the citizens of the following countries: Germany, Austria, Andorra, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Spain (including the Balearic and Canary Islands), Estonia, Vatican, France (Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, Reunion), Finland, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal (including the archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores), Czech Republic, Romania, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, and Switzerland.
Here we should note that the list of countries includes Portugal and Malta that administer their own investment immigration programs. This means that if you have already acquired citizenship of Cyprus, for example, it would be easier for you to obtain residence in the Principality of Monaco.
Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: opening a bank account, acquiring insurance, and integrating with the local community
To qualify for Monegasque residence, you will need to open a bank account in the country and acquire a suitable medical insurance policy. There is a wide choice of banks in Monaco and all of them (as well as other financial institutions in the country) are members of the Association Monégasque des Activités Financières (AMAF). Experts at InternationalWealth are frequently in contact with banks in the Principality and will be pleased to make suitable referrals at no charge. Check our bank accounts page (insert link) for more details, and be sure to specify that you are considering applying for residence in Monaco when you get in contact with us.
As far as the medical insurance is concerned, the information about all the insurance companies, agents, and brokers can be obtained from the Insurance Chamber in Monaco (Chambre Monégasque de l’Assurance; CMA). This information will help you to choose the most reliable insurer. Please note that the insurance industry in Monaco works by rules similar to those in other European countries such as France, for example. In some cases, additional insurance policies will be required (vehicle insurance, for instance).
When you finally obtain the coveted Monacan residence permit, the local authorities will go out of their way to help you integrate into the local community. They hold special events for newcomers that help the latter to obtain some practical information about living in Monaco. You can learn about the healthcare system, education, transportation, business opportunities, and other spheres of life that you will inevitably come into contact with.
These events are organized by the Welcome Office in Monaco and are also open to prospective residents, so it’s a great idea to visit if you are thinking about applying for residence in Monaco. The Welcome Office describes itself as a “one-stop shop for everyone wishing to relocate to Monaco, whether for private or professional reasons.” With dedicated and attractive premises, the Office welcomes and assists individuals and entrepreneurs. This Service offers visitors useful tools, essential contacts and information for their administrative procedures. It can also put them in contact with key local bodies, both public and private, who can help with setting up life and business in the Principality.
There is also a non-for-profit organization in the country called CREM (Club des Résidents Étrangers de Monaco – Monaco Foreign Residents Club) that helps newcomers integrate. They lecture in English, French and Italian on all topics relevant to finding your way around in Monaco.
Can a foreign national become a full citizen of Monaco?
The temporary residence permit that you can acquire if you follow the scheme described above can be renewed again and again. If you spend more than six months of each calendar year in Monaco over a ten-year period, you become qualified for a permanent residence permit. Can you become a full citizen of Monaco? Theoretically – yes. In practice – probably not.
The first thing to take into account is that dual citizenship is not allowed in Monaco. Thus, even if you did have that magical opportunity to become a Monegasque, you would have to renounce your current citizenship (all citizenships that you have). Then again, some countries do not allow you to renounce citizenship and Monaco authorities have been known to allow people from such countries to keep their existing citizenships when acquiring Monaco citizenship by naturalization.
Theoretically, you can become a citizen of Monaco if you provide some extraordinary services to the country. It is not enough to be a world-famous or an extremely rich person to qualify for Monegasque citizenship. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s application for Monegasque citizenship was been rejected for example. And he is an Austrian-born ex-Governor of California! Being a close personal friend of the Prince, or a lifetime of unwavering loyal service to the Royal Family, is however probably enough to be granted citizenship of Monaco for extraordinary services.
You can become a citizen of the country if you marry a person who is already a citizen of Monaco. However, citizenship will only be granted to you after the marriage has lasted for at least 10 years. Besides, this route to Monegasque citizenship will fail if the person you marry has acquired citizenship of the country through a previous marriage.
Children born to Monegasque parents or adopted by them are eligible for citizenship of the country. This holds true even if only one of the parents is a citizen of Monaco. Babies found in Monaco of unknown parents are also entitled to citizenship.
Around 38,000 people live in Monaco and only around 9,000 of them are full citizens of the country. This shows that becoming a Monegasque citizen is an almost unattainable goal. For now, a legal residence permit will suffice for you to enjoy the natural beauty, safety and business-friendly environment of this sophisticated little country.
Residence of Monaco for self-sufficient individuals: what services can you obtain from a licensed immigration agent?
You might wish to consider the services of a licensed immigration agent who will simplify the acquisition of a legal residence permit in Monaco for you. Our partner office in Monte Carlo can provide the following services:
|Service type||Service cost|
|Complete support package in applying for Monegasque residence||15 000 EUR|
|Agent’s assistance on your visit to the French consulate in Monaco||1,000 euros|
|Assistance in opening a bank account in Monaco||3,000 euros|
|Assistance in registering property in Monaco||3,000 euros|
|Assistance in registering a company in Monaco||The cost of the service will depend on the type of company that you would like to register. For instance, if you are registering a SARL (Société à responsabilité limitée), the cost is going to be around 8,700 euro: 8,000 euro as the service cost and 700 in state duties payable.|
|Accounting services for Monaco-registered companies||From 1,000 euros per year|
|Yacht registration||contact us|
If you have any questions related to acquiring a legal resident permit in Monaco, please do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You are also welcome to use a messenger or our live chat. We always respond quickly!