Hungarian residence permit for IT professionals and investors

The Hungarian legislation can be applied from January 2022. The aim of the provision is to grant a so-called Hungarian “White Card” for professionals working in the IT sector and for investors to enable them to enter other countries in the Schengen Area also.

As the Hungarian legislator’s aim shows, the IT community’s presence could further enhance the Hungarian technological sector and start-up culture, while further increasing the attractiveness of Hungary on an international level. Tax conditions are favourable in Hungary, there are many co-working offices, internet access is fast and stable, Wi-Fi coverage is ideal, there is a bustling night life, and last but not least, the inspiration for IT businesses is ensured by the active international community.

Who is eligible for the White Card?

The White Card is a new type of residence permit which is a perfect fit for digital nomads. People outside of the European Union may obtain it if they have

  • an employment status in another country or
  • equity in a foreign business with verified profits,

and they conduct their work or lead their business from Hungary, using a developed digital technological solution.

The White Card’s period of validity

The White Card’s period of validity is maximum one year, but it can be extended once, for a period of maximum one year. The White Card cannot be the basis of a permanent residence permit. The period of residence because of the White Card cannot be included in the required period of residence necessary for issuing the permanent residence permit.

The White Card does not imply a right for family reunification: the family members of the owner of the White Card cannot obtain a residence permit solely because of the owner of the Card.

What not to do with the White Card

If you establish a company or are engaged in an occupation in Hungary, you lose your White Card, however, you can request a residence permit for conducting business which is valid for 2 years.

People with the following purposes of residence cannot obtain a White Card:

  • engaging in an occupation in Hungary, or
  • conducting business as a member of a Hungarian company’s management, or
  • carrying out any paid activity independently (e.g. as an individual entrepreneur) in Hungary.

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