Austria Overview

The Republic of Austria offers one of the highest living standards in the world. Although one of the smaller states of Europe, it has a world-class capital, Vienna, with a rich cultural and historic heritage. But Austria also boasts beautiful countryside with Alpine peaks and spectacular scenery. It is an excellent place to establish residence within the European Union and is the only EU country besides Slovakia with an established practice of offering citizenship and a passport to substantial investors without prior residence requirements on the basis of a capital contribution in the country.

Residence for Persons of Independent Means

For persons of independent means, Austria offers the opportunity to become resident in the European Union with minimal requirements. The key criteria are that you have sufficient funds, a university degree that is recognized in Austria or knowledge of the German language at A1 level, accommodation in Austria and health insurance that provides full cover in Austria. An Austrian residence permit allows you to travel to all Schengen states without the need for a visa. After ten years of legal residence, you may apply for Austrian citizenship.


Section 10 (6) of the Austrian Citizenship Act states that the government can reward foreign persons with citizenship in cases of extraordinary merit. This may take various forms, including economic ones, and can include capital contribution or other economic benefit brought to Austria. However, citizenship is not granted on the basis of a capital contribution alone. The foreign investor must make an extraordinary contribution alongside his investment, such as bringing new technologies to the country or creating a substantial number of new jobs. Significant direct investment is generally required. Passive investments in government bonds, real estate, etc. do not qualify. Each case is handled on an individual basis. Read more...

Key Advantages of Austria

  • Possibility of establishing residence as a person of independent means
  • Austrian residence permit gives visa-free access to all Schengen States
  • Citizenship may be available after 10 years of residence
  • Citizenship-by-Investment possible without prior residence for substantial investors
  • Under Citizenship-by-Investment no need to spend any particular time actually residing in Austria
  • Attractive lifestyle and healthy environment
  • Excellent transport and communications

Services of Henley & Partners

To establish yourself or your business in Austria, you will need to set up relationships with key partners such as lawyers, bankers and government officials. As a client of our firm, you will be able to rely on us to receive the right advice, but also to help you build a network of contacts, to take advantage of your new environment and to achieve your goals.

The specialized services of Henley & Partners are a resource and a complement to other firms advising international private clients. We regularly help law firms, private banks, family offices and other wealth management professionals with the unique and specific details required by the relocation and immigration process for their clients.

Further Information

Please contact us for more information on residence and citizenship in Austria for investors and financially independent individuals, or to arrange an initial personal consultation.

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