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American-Hellenic chamber of commerce 1932
Greece: The Path From A Great Past To A Great Future

Philadelphia Greek Law Blog

George Kounoupis speaks in Athens at International Meeting for Mediation

On Monday, March 20, Attorney George Kounopis, partner and co-founder of our firm, spoke along with several other renowned presenters about the state of mediation as it pertains to Greek-American relations. The International Meeting for Mediation event was held in Athens, Greece, at the behest of the Greek Prime Minister. It was co-sponsored by a number of key international finance and commerce organizations, including the:

  • ADR Promotion Organisation
  • American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce
  • British-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce
  • CCI France Grèce
  • The Hellenic Dutch Association of Commerce and Industry
  • The Hellenic Bank Association
  • The Hellenic German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Deutsch-Griechische Industrie und Hamdelskammer)
  • Italian-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce (Camera di Commercio Italo-Ellenica di Salonicco)
  • Hellenic-Canadian Chamber of Commerce

Greek property tax totals up considerably in recent years

Different countries undergo different trends when it comes to property taxes. Recent data points to Greece being in a trend of rising property tax totals in recent times.

According to the data, Greek property taxes came in at 3.5 billion euros in 2016. This is up several times from where the totals were just a handful of years previous. For example, the total amount of Greek property taxes paid in 2009 only came up to 500 million euros.

Report recommends further structural reforms in Greece

Greece has seen many legal reforms in recent years. This includes reforms of legal systems related to business activity.

A recent report by the Center for Planning and Economic Research looked into what sort of business environment is coming out of current Greek legal systems.

Survey: Greek hotels have been moving towards the luxury side

Among the foreign real estate investments some individuals make are hotel-related investments. Some Greek American investors may desire to make such investments in Greece. There are many things it can be important for such an individual to give due regard when investing in Greek hotels.

One are the legal issues related to the particular hotel investment they are thinking of making, including issues related to Greek real estate and tax laws. Properly addressing such issues as they come up could help with preventing unexpected complications from arising in connection to transactions or other matters involving this type of property. So, what sort of legal guidance a Greek American has when dealing with such issues could be quite impactful.

U.S. citizen living in Greece? Don't forget your tax returns.

If you are an American or permanent resident (or you have dual citizenship) and lived in Greece for a substantial portion of 2016, you may owe taxes on any income you earned while living in Greece or from a Greek business. U.S. tax laws require any American citizen residing in Greece who makes more than $10,350 a year as an individual or $20,720 as part of a married couple to file an American tax return by June 15 of the tax year.

This tax filing burden is in addition to any issued by the Greek government or as part of FATCA or FBAR compliance governing accounts held in foreign banks.

Inheriting property in Greece

Issues involving Greek law can come up for Greek Americans in a variety of situations. This includes when they have discovered that a deceased loved one has left them property, such as real estate or a bank account, in Greece.

Now, Greek laws regarding the probate process are not the only Greek laws that can end up mattering quite a bit for a person when inheriting property in Greece. Other laws that could be relevant include Greek laws on taxes, titles, property and real estate.

Report: Business taxation in Greece among Europe’s highest

Among the many issues that can come up for a Greek American when they own a business in Greece are issues regarding Greek taxes. Companies in Greece can face quite a bit in the way of taxes. A recent report put Greece near the top of Europe when it comes to level of business taxation.

The report was from the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises. According to the report, when it comes to taxation of companies and executives, Greece is second highest among European Union countries. One wonders what impacts this is having on owners of Greek businesses, including those who live here in the United States.

Divorce and the Greek economic crisis

Divorce trends and issues in a given country can be affected by many things. This includes economic conditions. Given this, one question that comes up when it comes to Greece is: What impacts has Greece’s economic crisis had on divorce in the country?

Divorce statistics in Greece covering the time since the crisis began indicate that trends in divorce numbers in the country have shifted as the crisis has progressed.

Starting a business in Greece

There are many types of business ventures a person may try to take on. One is starting a new business in another country. For example, a Greek American entrepreneur may desire to start up a company in Greece.

Starting a business, on its own, can have a fair amount of challenges connected with it. When the business in question will be in another country, a lot of additional challenging aspects could come up. For example, when a Greek American is starting a business in Greece, various complicated issues related to things like Greek business laws, Greek tax laws and European Union laws on businesses could arise in relation to their startup. Skilled U.S-Greek business law attorneys can provide Greek American entrepreneurs with guidance on the unique legal matters related to starting a business in Greece.

Challenges to setting up business in Greece

Oftentimes, a Greek American wants to set up a business in Greece but lacks the necessary knowledge to navigate the challenges that one encounters trying to set up such a business. Let's take a look at some of the main points that need to be kept in mind while embarking on such an enterprise.

In recent times, Greece has been dealing with an economic crisis that has left many companies teetering on the brink of collapse. Not only has this crisis affected businesses, but also the consumers, with customers showing increased wariness before placing their trust in new companies or products.

Hahalis & Kounoupis, P.C. - Greek Law Group
Phone: 610-628-1336
Toll Free: 877-509-4333
Fax: 610-691-8418

U.S. Offices:
20 East Broad Street 
Bethlehem, PA 18018
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New Jersey
1015 New Durham Road
Edison, NJ 08817
(By appointment only)
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Greece Offices:
18 Valaoritou Street
4th Floor
Athens, 10671
(By appointment only)
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10 Ermou Street
Thessaloniki, 54625
(By appointment only)
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Hahalis & Kounoupis, P.C. - Greek Law Group