How to Obtain a Long-Term Residence Permit in Turkey

How to Obtain a Long-Term Residence Permit in Turkey

There are various ways to establish legal residence in Turkey, but obtaining a long-term residence permit allows you to settle in the country for an extended period without the need for frequent renewal. Unlike other types of permits, a permanent residence permit is indefinite, granting its holder the same rights as Turkish citizens. However, there are a few exceptions, including the right to run for public office, access to specific government positions, and exemptions from customs duties when importing vehicles.

Read on to learn how to get a long-term residence permit in Turkey.

Grounds for Obtaining a Long-Term Residence Permit in Turkey

You are eligible to apply for a long-term residence permit once you have lived in the country for a minimum of eight years. This duration encompasses most types of residence permits, including student permits. The exceptions are residence permits granted to refugees and those with humanitarian reasons.

In addition, you are required to do the following:

  • Demonstrate your financial stability, as evidenced by your ability to maintain suitable living conditions for both yourself and your family, and by not having received any social assistance from the country for at least three years prior to your application.
  • Provide proof of valid health insurance coverage that applies throughout Turkey.
  • Maintain a clean legal record and have no outstanding issues with law enforcement.

Applying for a Long-Term Residence Permit: Step-by-Step

When applying for any type of residence permit in Turkey, you will be issued a special ID card. In the case of a permanent residence permit, this card has no expiration date and does not require renewal. To obtain this card, you must follow these steps:

  • Ensure that you meet all the requirements for obtaining a long-term residence permit.
  • Register on the e-ikamet website and submit your application.
  • Pay the fees, which consist of two components:
  • Card fee updated annually by the government. In 2023, it was 356 Turkish liras ($14).
  • A residence fee, which varies based on your citizenship. For instance, citizens of Tunisia, Morocco, and Egypt are required to pay only $0.5 per month, while citizens of Czech Republic, Denmark, and Syria are exempt from this fee.

The system will automatically calculate the total amount due after you submit your application. You can choose to make the payment immediately on the website or at a later time at a bank or tax office. Please note that your application will only be processed after payment confirmation.

  • Schedule a personal appointment at the migration office.
  • Attend your appointment at the designated time and ensure you have all your original documents with you.
  • If your application is approved, await the issuance of your ID card. The application processing period is 90 days from the date when all original documents were submitted. In the event of a rejection, you have the option to either appeal the decision or reapply, though the latter is only possible after a waiting period of six months.

Istanbul. Photo: christian hardi (Pixabay)

Required Documents to Apply for a Long-Term Residence Permit

To acquire a long-term residence permit, you must complete the appropriate application form on the e-ikamet website and provide a photocopy of your passport along with four biometric photographs.

In addition, you should upload copies of the following documents to the website and bring the originals to your appointment at the migration office:

  • Your previous residence permit (ID card).
  • Certificate of no criminal record.
  • Confirmation of financial solvency.
  • A certificate from the Social Assistance Fund confirming that you have not received social assistance during the past three years
  • Receipt of payment for the card fee and residence fee
  • Health insurance
  • Confirmation of your legal place of residence in Turkey. This could include a sales or rental agreement, a certificate from a student dormitory or hotel, and so on. If you have a residence registration, you should also bring the corresponding certificate, which can be obtained online through the government services website.

Library of Celsus. Photo: 12019 (Pixabay)

Common Reasons For Losing Your Long-Term Residence Permit

To retain your long-term residence permit, you must maintain continuous residence in the country. If you leave for a period of one year or more without a valid reason, your permanent residence permit may be revoked. However, your residence permit will not be affected if you leave the country for medical treatment, educational purposes, or due to compulsory public service in your home country, provided you can provide official certificates to confirm these reasons. Your permanent residence may be revoked if you pose a significant threat to public safety.

Subsequently, you can apply for the recovery of your long-term residence permit. In this scenario, you won't be required to meet the eight-year residency condition. It's worth noting that such applications are given priority status and are typically processed within one month.

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In a Nutshell

With a long-term residence permit, you can reside in Turkey without any time limits. To obtain this type of residence permit, you must have legally resided in the country for eight years and have sufficient income to support yourself and your family. It is also important that you have no problems with the police and have not received any social assistance from the government for at least three years before application. After obtaining your long-term residence permit, you cannot leave the country for more than a year without a substantial reason; otherwise, your residence permit will be cancelled. These rules for obtaining a long-term residence permit do not apply to refugees, holders of a humanitarian residence permit, and individuals under protection.

Cover photo: 2427999 (Pixabay)

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