Applying for Malta Citizenship FAQs

December 14 17:08 2015 by The Editor Print This Article

Which Malta Government Entity is responsible for the IIP?

Identity Malta Agency has been established and entrusted with powers for the purpose of discharging duties in terms of the Malta Individual Investor Programme (IIP)  . Identity Malta falls under the responsibility of the Ministry for Home Affairs and National Security.  However, Identity Malta does not receive applications directly from applicants.  Applications should be filed through an approved law firm in Malta.  Since its original release, the programme allows any Maltese law firm that has undergone the appropriate licencing process to handle applications directly with Identity Malta.  There is no monopoly in providing services in this area but accredited persons are strongly regulated.

Who can I contact for information on Malta Citizenship?

Contact Us using this online form.

On approval, is Maltese Citizenship granted for Life?

Yes, upon obtaining the certificate of naturalisation, the Applicant and his dependants become holders of Maltese citizenship for life.

Can Maltese Citizenship be revoked?

Revocation generally takes place on the basis of any of the exhaustive grounds that the main Act stipulates. However, the Act prescribes that the Applicant under the IIP may be deprived of his Maltese citizenship if he fails to comply with the requirement to purchasing or leasing a residential property in Malta or to make investments in Malta or if he becomes a threat to national security or involved in conduct that is seriously prejudicial to the vital interests of Malta. Read more on the Revocation of Maltese Citizenship under Maltese Law.

Are persons naturalised as Maltese citizens entitled to dual citizenship?

The Maltese Citizenship Act grants the grant to dual citizenship to all Maltese citizens without any distinction. However, a Maltese citizen may only hold the citizenship of another state where the law of such state also provides there for.

In virtue of European Union (EU) law, every Maltese citizen is also a European citizen.

What are the timeframes for an Application for Maltese Citizenship?

The process to final approval is expected to be completed within 4  to 6 months with an maximum time limit established by law at 2 years for difficult cases.  For persons not already resident in Malta, this 

meant to be complete within two years which start to run from the date of application. The minimum period is that of six months. However, a period of twelve months of residency must be considered as a requirement that must be fulfilled immediately prior to the date of application.

What's the cost of obtaining Citizenship?

The Contribution that must be paid under the IIP towards the National Development and Social Funds (NDSF) are the following:.

  • EUR 650,000 for the Main Applicant [EUR 10,000 thereof is a non-refundable deposit that shall be paid prior to the submission of the application];
  • EUR 25,000 for the Spouse;
  • EUR 25,000 for every child below the age of 18;
  • EUR 50,000 for every unmarried child between the age of 18 and 26;
  • EUR 50,000 for every dependant parent above the age of 55.

The Due Diligence Fees payable to Identity Malta:

  • EUR 7,500 for the Main Applicant;
  • EUR 5,000 for the Spouse;
  • EUR 3,000 for every child between the age of 13 and 18;
  • EUR 5,000 for every unmarried child between the age of 18 and 26;
  • EUR 5,000 for every dependant parent above the age of 55.

Passport Fees

  • EUR 500 per passport.

Bank Charges

  • The bank charges fee due per application is of EUR 200.

What initial contribution must be paid prior to approval of an Application?

The sum of EUR 10,000 is to be remitted as a non-refundable deposit, together with the official application and due diligence fees as well as the professional fees chargeable by the approved Maltese law firm of your choice.

What part of the fees are non-refundable?

The initial contribution of EUR 10,000, the due diligence fees and bank charges are non-refundable. In addition, passport fees are refundable only in case it was not applied for.

What checks are to be made on the Applicant and his dependants, if any?

Every application undergoes a four tier process of due diligence checks. Identity Malta remains solely responsible for the proper carrying out of the due diligence tests.

Identity Malta will check that the background of the Applicant and his dependants as well as the information provided in the Application have been verified by one or more independent due diligence agents. The Agency will also check that the source of all funds has been verified and that an appropriate risk weighting has been carried out.

Who is allowed to take the Oath of Allegiance?

Any dependant who is at least eighteen years of age and not physically or mentally challenged, and who is living with and is fully supported by the Applicant, is deemed to be capable of taking the Oath of Allegiance himself.

Where may the application form be obtained?

Request using this online form.

What documents will be required by the Main Applicant to apply for a residence permit for the purposes of the IIP?

Request using this online form.

What is a certified copy?

Where a photocopy of an original document is certified either by a duly licensed lawyer or a notary public or a Maltese consular or diplomatic officer then it is deemed to be a certified copy thereof.

What is an Apostille document?

An Apostille document is either a stamp or a printed form that consists of ten numbered standard fields. These ten numbered standard fields are: (1) the country where the document is drawn; (2) name of the person(s) by whom it is signed; (3) the capacity thereof; (4) the seal or stamp of the authority whom it is certified; (5) the location; (6) the date; (7) the name(s) thereof; (8) the Apostille registration number; (9) the seal or stamp of the authority giving the Apostille and (10) the signature of the authority giving the Apostille.

Why is an Apostille document required?

This is because when a lawyer or notary public certifies a document to be a true copy of the original, such must be authenticated by an Apostille, which must comply with the provisions of the Hague Convention of 5th October 1961 since Malta is a party to the Convention.

In what language must all Application docs be submitted?

The Application form and any other accompanying documents must be in English, and where the original language of a document is not English, including the Maltese language, then such shall be accompanied by an authenticated translation.

Who can translate documentation for the IIP process?

Any certified translator may translate any document that is in a language other than the English language.

What should be done in case that original documentation cannot be obtained?

Where original documents are not available, such as a birth or marriage certificate, then a certified copy must be submitted. Identity Malta is bound to confirm with the relevant Embassy the content of thereof.

What are the requirements to be eligible for the IIP?

Legal Notice 47 of 2014 lists exhaustively all the requirements that must be fulfilled by the Applicant. These requirements briefly include a certificate from a reputable health system to prove that the Applicant is in good health; a police certificate that the Applicant is of good conduct and due diligence documents that show that he is a fit and proper person.

The Applicant is also required to present an undertaking to remit the full contribution owed by him; an undertaking to purchase to take on lease immovable residential property in Malta as well as an undertaking to make such other investments in Malta. The Applicant is also obliged to present any other document that Identity Malta may request from time to time by means of a notice.

Is knowledge of the Maltese language mandatory?

There is no legal provision that imposes knowledge of the Maltese language on the part of Applicants. However, since the IIP is a mode of acquisition of Maltese citizenship through naturalisation, the general provisions of the Maltese Citizenship Act apply mutatis mutandis. On this account, an Applicant must have adequate knowledge either of the Maltese or the English language as the two official languages of Malta. 

When is proof of residence required?

The Applicant must prove that he has been residing in Malta for a minimum period of twelve months prior to the issuance of the certificate of naturalisation.

Are dependants of the Applicant required to give the same undertaking in respect of residence?

The law only imposes the residence requirement on the Applicant himself.

Will a naturalised citizen be entitled to participate within the political sphere?

Under the Constitution of Malta, every citizen of Malta is entitled to participate by exercising its voting rights. This provided that he or she has been a resident of Malta for six months during the eighteenth month period prior to the election.

How will a person know that a person is an Accredited Agent?

A person may only act as an Approved Agent if it is an audit firm, a law firm, a financial advisory firm, an intermediary firm or any other person or body authorised by Identity Malta. In practice, those persons who act as Approved Agents may be identified by accessing the Identity Malta website.

Where will a Maltese passport be recognised?

A Maltese passport is recognised in 163 countries around the globe. Moreover, EU law also entitles persons to the right of establishment within the EU territory, that is, in 28 Member States.

Which are the necessary documents that the Applicant must submit to apply for a Residence Permit for the purposes of the IIP?

The Applicant must fill in two forms and attach the required number of passport photographs to be counter-signed by a professional authority such as a doctor. Documentation such as identification card, private health insurance documents and so on are also needed.

Will the Applicant have his Residence Permit withdrawn if the IIP Application is rejected?

Where a Residence Permit is applied for solely for the purposes of the IIP then it will be withdrawn if the IIP application is rejected.

Is the Applicant entitled to obtain an e-Residence card?

The Applicant, being an EU or EEA or Swiss national, may download the application form from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ website and submit all the necessary documentation. If the Applicant is a non-EU national, then he is required to visit the Department for Citizenship and Expatriate Affairs in person so as to follow the biometrics requirements, namely photographic image; fingerprints and signature.

What is the required age for a dependant to have his biometric data taken?

Where a dependant has reached the age of six then he must attend in person either at the Passport office in Valletta or at an Embassy or at the High Commission or a Consular Office.

Is there any suitable time for the Applicant to apply for a Residence Permit?

Since the procedure is rather lengthy and it may take up several months for its completion, then it would suitable if the Applicant submits his application and the necessary documentation as soon as possible. It is good practice that in order to reside in the Maltese Islands one is supposedly registered as a resident as the first step towards acquiring Maltese citizenship.

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