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Hungary’s new visa programme 2024

Extensive experience in supporting your investments in Hungary and across CEE/SEE

In December 2023, Parliament passed a bill to reform the Hungarian immigration system. Act XC of 2023, which entered into force on 1 January 2024, introduces the guest investor residence permit with effect from 1 July 2024, thus re-launching the Hungarian “Golden Visa” programme. This presents new opportunities for third-country nationals and their family members seeking long-term residence in Hungary through investments.

Available investment options:

  • EUR 250,000 – Acquisition Bonds (Hungarian Real Estate Fund) registered with the Hungarian National Bank, or
  • EUR 500,000 – Purchase of an unencumbered residential property in Hungary, or
  • EUR 1,000,000 – Making a financial donation to a specific higher education or cultural institution.

Investor rights:

  • A ten-year residence permit is granted, allowing free movement within the Schengen area, renewable once for another 10 years.
  • Family members can join through family reunification.
  • The investor and family members can maintain their residence permit without residing in Hungary.
  • Both the investor and family members are free to work and start a business.

The administrative procedure:

Step 1: Applying for a Visitor Investor Visa
Interested parties must apply for a Visiting Investor Visa at the Hungarian consulate in their home country or country of habitual residence.
The visa application must be accompanied by a signed letter of commitment to carry out the investment and proof of the availability of financial resources. The visa is valid for two years.
For applicants from a country that does not require a visa, this first step can be omitted.

Step 2: Arranging Investment Details
Ensure compliance with the deadline in point 3.

Step 3: Entry into Hungary, Finalization of Investment, Residence Permit Application
Within 93 days of entry into Hungary, applicants complete the investment commitment and submit a residence permit application to the National Directorate-General for Aliens Policing of Hungary.

Step 4: Fulfilling Maintenance Obligations Linked to Residence Permit:

  • Real estate bond: A 5-year maintenance obligation, with the provision that renewal requires a bond again in the amount of EUR 250,000.
  • In the case of purchase of real estate: the investor must register a five-year ban on alienation and encumbrance of the purchased property. After the 5-year period, the property may be disposed of, with the proviso that in the event of an extension request to the residence permit, the investor must hold a property in the amount of at least EUR 500,000.
  • In the case of a donation: A one-time donation suffices; no additional donations are required for permit extension.

For any further information regarding the details of the Golden Visa, please contact Wolf Theiss. Our team of multi-disciplinary experts stands ready to assist you with both immigration and investment issues and provide you with a comprehensive service during the implementation of the Golden Visa programme.