Armenia is a modern and fast-growing country with rich history and traditions, beautiful nature, excellent cuisine, and a very low crime rate. Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, is considered to be one of the safest cities in the world. The cost of living is very low compared to other European countries.
An Armenian residence permit grants you the right to visa-free travel and unrestricted stay in the country and the right to engage in any lawful activities, such as doing business, working, studying, or simply retiring. A resident may sponsor his/her family members to become residents and may invite other foreigners to Armenia. Residents enjoy constitutional rights and freedoms, including rights to work, healthcare, social security, education, property and privacy rights, freedom of speech, conscience, religion, and belief. Armenian residents are not obliged to serve in the military.
Types of Residency Permits
There are three types of residency permits in Armenia, Temporary, Permanent, and Special. They are granted for a year, five years, and 10 years respectively, and can be renewed indefinitely. While a resident is required to have a physical address in the country, there are no residency requirements so an individual may remain outside the country while accruing time for citizenship eligibility.
Temporary Residency Permit
A temporary resident permit (TRP) is issued for a year, and it may be renewed indefinitely but keep in mind you must submit the application at least 30 days before your visa or residency permit expires. In addition, you will need to demonstrate a valid reason for requesting a TRP such as a work permit, owning/operating a business, studying, and the means of supporting yourself or your family.
FEES and REQUIREMENTS
The completed application is then submitted to the Passport and Visa Department of the Armenian Police in Yerevan (OVIR). The processing time is usually 30-45 days.
After three years of being a temporary resident, you may apply for a permanent residency, and in the case of marriage to an Armenian, it may be done after two years. The main qualifying categories for permanent residency are marriage and work or business activities in the country.
FEES and REQUIREMENTS (same as the TRP except for the following)
The processing time is the same as a temporary permit, 30-45 days.
This category usually applies to ethnic Armenians that were born abroad although exceptions are sometimes made for foreigners that are involved in economic and cultural activities inside the country. This permit is valid for 10 years and allows the holder to legally work, study, and own land in their name without having to establish a legal entity. It also serves as a path to citizenship and a Special Residency holder may after three years.
FEES and REQUIREMENTS
The processing time is about 60 days, and it can be filled remotely through a power of attorney.
The final step for many is citizenship and the qualifying categories are similar to a permanent resident. They are married to an Armenian, of Armenian descent, through residency, or by exception.
Marriage to an Armenian Citizen: The marriage has to be officially registered for at least two years and you must have resided in the country for at least a year or have a common child who is an Armenian citizen.
Being of Armenian Descent: This category applies to ethnic Armenians born abroad. While they are exempt from the language and residency requirements, they must prove their ethnicity. This is usually done through baptism certificates or government documents stating Armenian nationality.
Residency: Having been a temporary or permanent resident for at least three years. In addition, the applicant must demonstrate fluency in the Armenian language and be familiar with the Constitution of the Republic. This requirement does not apply to ethnic Armenians.
By Exception: This particular category must be approved by the president, and it is not granted often. Usually, it involves a contribution that improves the country’s welfare such as a large donation or creating jobs. There is no legal definition of the amount that qualifies but there have been cases of it being granted to individuals who have invested more than $100,000 or donated $50,000 in the country.
Investors: Investors can also qualify for a residence permit in Armenia on the same terms as the business owners. the law does not specifically require the applicant to be actively engaged in the day-to-day management of the business. Therefore, the same rules that apply to regular business owners will also be applicable to investors.
Real Estate Investment: Owning real estate by itself will not qualify you for a residence permit. However, you have the option of 1) developing real estate or 2) purchasing and operating the rental property. You should qualify for residency if you turn the property into an income-generating business asset. You would still have to register as a taxpayer in Armenia and pay taxes on your income (rental income is normally taxed at 10%).
Investment in an Existing Business: It is possible to qualify for residency by purchasing an existing business or a share in an existing business. Such transactions usually are more complicated because of the due diligence checks and appraisal matters.
Other Assets: Investment in publicly-traded government or corporate bonds, and corporate stock may also qualify you for residence.
Step 1: The client travels to Armenia or, in case of the remote application, mails the necessary documents to Armenia, including a power of attorney and a legalized copy of his passport (or the original passport) (approx. 2-3 weeks)
Step 2: The client is registered with the tax office and is issued a taxpayer identification number (2-3 days)
Step 3: Income from business or employment is reported to the tax office and taxes are paid (approx. 3-6 weeks)
Step 4: Residence permit application is filled. In the case of remote applications, the client mails his/her original passport. After a few days, the passport was sent back to the client. (1-2 days or approx 2-3 weeks in case of remote application)
Step 5: Residence permit application is examined and approved (30-50 days).
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Privacy World can also help you with incorporating your company in Armenia, assisting in getting you settled in the country, and coordinating with you so that this experience will be less of a hassle.
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Dual citizenship has been allowed in Armenia since 2005, as long as the government is notified upon acquisition of additional nationality.
Yes, you can include your spouse, children, parents, siblings, grandparents, and grandchildren.
There is no minimum stay requirements in Armenia.
Foreigners can be 100% owners of real estate in Armenia. They can acquire, hold, lease, sell, bequest and otherwise dispose of their property on equal basis with locals.
It takes 3 years of legal residence in Armenia, good knowledge of Armenian, acquaintance with the Constitution of Armenia.
Residents are liable for tax on their worldwide income.
Non-residents are liable for tax only on their Armenian-source income.
There is no net wealth/worth taxes in Armenia.
There is no inheritance taxes in Armenia.