NBLO helps optimise new Start-up visa in Bulgaria

29 June 2022

Since acceding to the EU, Bulgaria has developed its start-up ecosystem, which has now matured considerably. Originally mostly the preserve of locals, over the last 10 years, tech founders from both within and outside Europe have come in to set up in Bulgaria.   

New Balkans Law Office is committed to an effective legal framework for startups. 

One aspect of this is the ability of non-EU nationals to move to live and work in Bulgaria for as long as their startup requires. The Start-up Visa proposed in Bulgaria in 2021 is intended to do this. 

While on the statute book for more than 1 year, the start-up visa has remained a merely theoretical possibility for founders, since both the government units intended to handle applications and the procedures intended are lacking.

NBLO has contributed to the drafting of the start-up visa regulatory framework including alongside the Bulgarian Startup Association (“BESCO”).  

Our combination of legal expertise in startup, administrative, immigration and private client laws and an international-first perspective means we are uniquely placed to assist. 

We have proposed a number of simplifications and clarifications; ensured a distinction between high-technology and innovation such that either qualifies; attempted to minimise the need for discretion; tightening of the decision-making timetable; a greater permanence of the composition of the decision-making body, and other changes. The procedure is intended to be electronic only but since this pre-supposes a government IT procurement process, we have suggested that it can kick off with paper applications. 

The regulations ought to be introduced in the next 2-3 months and will then enable the making of applications for the startup visa from summer 2022.

If you are interested in obtaining more information on the Bulgarian start-up visa, please do not hesitate to contact us. We would be happy to assist you with any questions or concerns that you may have.

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The Bulgarian and dual-qualified lawyers of New Balkans Law Office are regulated by the respective Bar of their registration. New Balkans Law Office is a brand name of Legal Services EOOD, a company registered under Bulgarian law. Reg’d No. 202331677. Further details are available here.

© New Balkans Law Office 2024