December 15, 2022
The Ministry of Interior of Montenegro finally adopted a rulebook defining the details of the digital nomad residence and visa conditions. This is the final step that actually makes the digital nomad residence possible in practice. As a reminder, the Parliament adopted the important changes in the Law on Foreigners which was the precondition for the rulebook.
So, how can a digital nomad apply for a residence permit or a visa?
Digital Nomad Definition in Montenegro?
First of all, do you fit the Government’s definition of a digital nomad? By this definition, a digital nomad is any individual who is doing remote work via the internet for a company that is not registered in Montenegro. This can be a company you are employed in or a company you own.
There is a minimum income requirement for the residence permit, and that is three minimal net salaries in Montenegro. This equals €1,350.00.
As we wrote before, it’s important that you are not associated with a company that is registered in Montenegro, and that you don’t provide services for Montenegrin companies.
Residence Permit for Digital Nomads in Montenegro
The residence permit for digital nomads is slightly different than the one based on work/company ownership. The main difference is that the digital nomad residence is granted for up to two years. So, there is a possibility to obtain a residence that is valid for one year longer than the employment-based residence. In addition, it can be extended for another two years. This means that your temporary residence can be up to four years long, after which you are not entitled to apply for permanent residence in Montenegro.
What are the document requirements for the digital nomad residence permit? If you plan to apply, note that you will have to provide the following documents:
- Non-conviction proof or police clearance from your native country, not older than six months, with an apostille;
- Work agreement which is concluded at least three months before the application, and clearly states the monthly salary of a minimum of €1,350.00;
- Original excerpt from the company registry in which your employer or company is registered (as proof that the company is active at the moment of your application);
- Bank statement or company payroll showing a minimum monthly income of €1,350 for the year prior to the application date;
- A notarized apartment rent agreement in Montenegro;
- Valid 30-day medical insurance.
If a digital nomad is coming from a country that needs a visa for Montenegro, they must obtain a D Visa prior to entering the country for residence permit application. To check if you need a visa, check out our Montenegro visa regime page.
The digital nomad residence period will depend on two factors – the lengths of your work and apartment rent contracts. If they are valid for one year after the application, your residence permit will be valid for the same period. If you want to obtain a two-year residence, both contracts will have to be for the same period.
D Visa for Digital Nomads
If you don’t plan to spend more than a couple of months in Montenegro, you can apply for a D Visa as a digital nomad. As for the residence permit, this includes showing that you are working for a company that is not registered in Montenegro and that you have sufficient funds for your stay. However, there is no minimum income requirement. If you obtain the D Visa, you will be able to stay in Montenegro for up to 180 days in total during a one-year period, with multiple entries if needed.
Digital Nomad’s Family Residence
If you are a digital nomad with a family, once you obtain your residence permit, your spouse and children can also apply on the grounds of family unification. As a family, the law considers spouse and dependents – your children up to 18 years old.
Digital nomads will not be eligible for taxes in Montenegro. This comes as a result of the fact that you are doing work for a company outside of Montenegro, so your income is not taxable here. Depending on the goal you want to make with a residence permit, this can be important as you will not be able to use this residence to reduce your taxes.
Remember That This is the Beginning
If you decide to apply for the digital nomad residence, please remember that this is a new area for the authorities and institutions. So, to be completely open with you, don’t be surprised or annoyed if there are certain hiccups in the process. However, the ground is finally set, and we expect that all institutions will be up to their task.
How Can We Help You?
Like a Bird Migration Consulting is offering a one-stop service for digital nomad residence permit consultancy. We will carefully review your case and help you plan the timeline and choose the best residence permit option. So, feel free to contact us or request a free consultation or an offer.
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