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12 benefits of EU citizenship


Since the early 2000’s the European Union has included more and more countries through offering the benefits that they would be eligible to participate in as part of the EU. Even with the recent confusion of how strong the EU actually is since the UK decided to leave it; even Brexit doesn’t undermine the appealing nature of freedom of movement of goods and persons between the participating countries.

As such, holding any passport of any country that belongs to the EU (“henceforth”: member states) grants one an access to the whole of the EU and, as a European citizen, they receive full citizen rights of the country the passport of which they are holding, and extensive rights of residents in any other European country belonging to the EU.

Thousands of people from around the world apply for European passports in order to either expand their employability, study, travel, visit, allow their children and grandchildren to obtain the citizenship of a given member state. There is no good or bad reason as to why one should obtain an additional citizenship, subject to the law of their country of origin. Subject to the applicant’s eligibility, the passport can be obtained in a relatively coherent and user-friendly manner. It is usually advised to go for an “easier-to-deal-with” country in terms of bureaucracy since, regardless of the passport that you are holding, you will be granted equal access to goods and services within the EEC, subject to temporary limitations on new member states. In order to check your eligibility, speak with a qualified consultant that will offer advice and guide you through the process.

I have listed below 11 benefits of holding a European passport:

1. There is no need to apply for entry visas. Living in Europe I have never had a doubtful pleasure of having to apply for visas. I travelled to any country I wanted, studied in any country I wanted, went for city-breaks to any country I wanted - because my passport had the power of granting me the same rights as the local residents in the given country. As a citizen of an EU member state you can travel between all member states without any restrictions and no time limitations. You can have breakfast in Paris, go shopping in Antwerp and end your evening in Austria as if you just travelled between different neighbourhoods in the same city.

2. You receive full work and residential rights in every member state.

Citizens of EU member states, nationals of the EEA and Switzerland are legally eligible to live, learn, work in any of the member states. All you need really for a successful transition is the language of the country and you are good to go. Any attempt to get a work visa for an non-European citizen can be both very expensive and unachievable, unless you represent a unique set of skills that your employer will endorse and will sponsor your visa. It is an additional expense for them and the lack of the regulated status within the country could become problematic for them. In short, the employers prefer not to get involved in such matters, when they can obtain a local employee who is a citizen or a resident.


3. Subsidised higher education.

There are many reasons to study in the EU: reputable universities, opportunities for international networking and career development, famously diverse cities, high quality of life, and, of course, the opportunity to study in different countries with free or very affordable tuition fees. The European universities also offer internal international student exchange programs, meaning that you can enroll for a course at a University in Berlin, but actually study for a year at a university in Madrid. As part of the EU funding, home and EU students get financial assistance to cover their everyday expenses, including accommodation, some bills and food.

4. You can set up your own company, a start up and get European funding for research* (check available programs before applying).

As an EU citizen, you can register a company and launch a branch of an existing EU-based business in any EU country, Iceland, Norway or Liechtenstein quickly and easily. In most EU countries, you can set up a new company for less than EUR 100 in less than 3 working days, completing all procedures on line through a single administrative body. There are many different EU funds and initiatives available to support start-ups and SMEs, such as the Start-up Europe Club, European Investment Advisory Hub or the Start-up Europe Partnership platform. If you are interested to increase the visibility of your business or seek funding, you can register your project on the European Investment Project Portal. The aim of these initiatives is to remove obstacles to investment, provide technical assistance and to make better use of financial resources. Business owners with dual citizenship benefit from the single economic EU zone without facing the restrictions applied by non-EU citizens. 5. You get the right to consular protection by EU member states in non EU states. The EU citizens in a non-EU country where their own national state has no representation is entitled to protection by the diplomatic or consular authorities of any other EU country. This right is enshrined in article 46 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. All member states are represented diplomatically in only three countries, namely the United States, China and Russia. In the rest of the world, many EU citizens are unrepresented by their national embassy or consulate. During emergencies, the EU member states must help an EU citizen in question evacuate as if they were their own nationals. Protection also covers everyday situations, like a passport being stolen, a serious accident or illness. 6. You get access to national health care benefits. Under the current EU laws, the EU citizens benefit from national and all-encompassing healthcare when they are in any of the European Union’s member states. These rights apply whether they are travelling temporarily between the EU member states, for example, on holiday or studying abroad, residing permanently in another EU country, or when travelling to another EU member state to receive medical treatment. 7. You have a right to vote in regional elections and you have a right to hold a public service position. All citizens of the EU have the right to vote and to stand as a candidate at elections to the European Parliament in the EU country in which they reside, under the same conditions as nationals of that country. They are also entitled to vote and to stand as a candidate at regional elections in the EU country in which they reside. The EU citizens are entitled to be recruited under the same conditions as nationals of the country in which they are seeking work and cannot be asked to meet any additional requirements. This means that citizens apply for any job vacancy advertised in any EU country, including public sector jobs. Some public service posts, of course, may be restricted to nationals of a particular country for security and accessibility reasons. 8. Increased privacy. The EU has introduced the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which covers data collection, storage and usage and allows individuals to move their personal data from one service provider to another. The EU regulations offer a layer of privacy regarding taxation that is not available in many parts of the world. Privacy laws in Poland are even stricter than elsewhere in Europe and many people value this level of personal protection above anything else. For assistance with accessing data and information stored in Poland, speak with our consultant. 9. You can fast-tracked through customs. If you have ever had to stand in a long queue with non-EU citizens before getting out of the airport, you will appreciate having an EU passport even more. 10. You always have a plan “B”. In today’s dynamic and somewhat unstable political, economical and social environment, an EU passport allows unlimited travel, safe passage and consular assistance for you and your family in situations beyond your control. 11. You can own property in every member state. Another benefit of the EU citizenship is the ability to own property in any of the EU countries without a permit. Diversifying your portfolio in European real estate might be better than it has been in more than a decade. Although several European countries are still recovering from property crises, international investors are positive about the European real estate market — with the exception of the UK, which has been shaken by Brexit. 12. Connect to your European heritage. To check your eligibility and speak with the consultant, contact us on esther@ehnewton.com for scheduling a phone call.

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