Cyprus Golden Visa: No More Senior Dependents, Annual Proof of Income and Investment
On Friday, the Cypriot Ministry of Interior announced that the new regulations for its investor permanent residency (golden visa) program would take effect tomorrow, the 2nd of May.
The Cypriot Council of Ministers approved the changes on April 21st to ” shield the scheme’s process and eliminate weaknesses that were observed and could potentially leave room for its exploitation.”
Same investment criteria but tougher renewal requirements
The PR program’s investment criteria remain unchanged but the program will see modifications in dependent eligibility and renewal criteria. The three primary changes in the program’s conditions are as follows:
- Parents and in-laws no longer counted as dependents
The new rules reduce the range of family members who qualify alongside the main applicants as dependents. Parents and parents in-law of the main applicant and spouse no longer qualify as dependents. Henceforth, these would need to qualify independently by making investments of their own.
- Minimum income requirement raised
Previously, the Cypriot golden visa mandated a minimum annual income of EUR 30,000 for the main applicant and an additional EUR 5,000 per dependent. Those figures are now raised to EUR 50,000 for the main applicant, a further 15,000 for a spouse, and EUR 10,000 per child dependent.
- Proof of maintained investment and income level required at renewal
Applicants will have to prove, on an annual basis, that they are still receiving an income that corresponds to the minimum required according to family size. Moreover, investors must prove they have not divested from their original EUR 300,000 minimum investment asset. Investors who fail to document that they continue to meet the income and investment requirements would see “their immigration permit and that of their family canceled,” according to the Ministry’s statement.
The new regulations will not affect those who entered into contracts to purchase property with the Department of Lands and Surveys between 02/01/2023 and 28/04/2023, whose applications the government will process under the previous regulations.
Cyprus Golden Passport Trial to move ahead
In other news emanating from Cyprus, the closely followed “golden passports trial”, in which former House President Demetris Syllouris, former Akel MP Christakis Giovanis, lawyer Andreas Pittadjis, and Antonis Antoniou face five charges, will be moving forward after the Nicosia Criminal Court rejected the defendants’ pre-trial objections regarding the charges.
The defendants face five charges, including illegally influencing a public official and conspiracy to defraud the Republic. The trial began in October but has been bogged down at the pre-trial stage since then. The defendants’ lawyers requested a further stay of the trial, claiming some of the charges their clients face were based on laws that were non-existent at the time of the accusation, and hence present a clear violation of their clients’ rights.
Syllouris’ lawyer, Chris Triantafyllides, argued that “his client is being charged for actions which ultimately were rubberstamped by the government.”
However, the court has rejected the pre-trial objections, and the Golden Passport Trial is set to continue on the 15th of May, 2023.
Ahmad Abbas is Director of Content Services at Investment Migration Insider and a six-year veteran of the investment migration industry.