Residence Permit 

The Law on Foreigners and International Protection No. 6458 (“Law No. 6458”) regulates the residence permit. Residence permit is special implementation to reside anywhere for a while due to some reasons without becoming citizen of any country. This implementation can be concluded positively as long as laws permit it. 

Residence permit which helps foreigners to reside in determined time period in different countries by applying to relevant institution with essential documents, is acquiring reside right. Consulting a lawyer may be beneficial for implementing procedure because many subjects are required sensitive approach such as application period, application renewal, and duration of staying on abroad.

People, who are excluded from residence permit, were stated in relevant laws. For example, persons who are excluded from residence permit, came to Turkey by visa exemption or by visa for maximum 90 days, have an ID card document about being stateless, are responsible as diplomats, consulate officers and their families and agencies of international institutions in Turkey are excluded in accordance with mutual agreements.

Types of Residence Permits


There are several types of residence permits, depending on the purpose of the visit of the foreign person. The types of residence permit are listed as short-term residence permit, family residence permit, student residence permit, long-term residence permit, humanitarian residence permit and victim of human trafficking residence permit under Article 30 of Law No. 6458. It should be mentioned that each type of residence of permit requires detailed documentation depending on the status and legal purpose of applicant.

short-term residence permit is regulated under Articles 31 to 33 of the Law No. 6458. As per these articles, a short-term residence permit may be granted to foreigners who arrive to conduct scientific research in Turkey; own immovable property in Turkey; establish business or commercial connections; participate in job training programs; who arrive to attend educational or similar programs as part of student exchange programs or agreements to which Turkey is a party; who wish to stay for tourism purposes; who intend to receive medical treatment, provided that they do not have a disease posing a public health threat; who are required to stay in Turkey pursuant to a request or a decision of judicial or administrative authorities; who attend a Turkish language course; who attend an education program, research, in­ternship or, a course by way of a public agency; who apply to a higher education program in Turkey within six months upon their graduation. 

A family residence permit is regulated under Articles 34 to 37 of Law No. 6458. Within this framework, a family residence permit may be granted to a foreign spouse; foreign children or foreign minor children of their spouse; dependent foreign children or dependent foreign children of the spouse of Turkish citizens.

student residence permit is regulated under Articles 38 to 41 of the Law No. 6458. As per these articles, a student residence permit shall be granted to foreigners who shall attend an associate degree, undergraduate, graduate or postgraduate program in a higher education institution in Turkey. A student residence permit shall not entitle the parents as well as other family members of the foreigner to obtain a residence permit

A long-term residence permit is regulated under Articles 42 to 45 of Law No. 6458. Pursuant to Article 42 of Law No. 6458, long-term residence permits shall be issued by the governorates, upon approval of the Ministry, to foreigners who have continuously resided in Turkey for at least eight years with a permit or, foreigners who meet the conditions set out by the Migration Policies Board. Pursuant to Article 43 of Law No. 6458, having a long-term residence permit depends on certain conditions such as having continuous residence in Turkey for at least eight years; not having received social assistance in the past three years; having sufficient and stable income to maintain themselves or, if any, support their family; be covered with a valid medical insurance; not being a threat for public order or public security.

humanitarian residence permit may be issued under the conditions regulated under Article 46 of Law No. 6458, upon approval of the Ministry. A humanitarian residence permit may be granted and renewed by the governorates without seeking the conditions required for other types of residence permits. A related permit is generally issued in cases of extraordinary circumstances. 

residence permit for victims of human trafficking is, as per Article 48 of Law No. 6458, a residence permit valid for thirty days which shall be granted to foreigners who are victims of human trafficking or where there is strong evidence that they might be victims of human trafficking in order to allow them to mitigate the impact of their negative experience and decide on whether they would like to cooperate with the competent authorities or not. 

Application for Residence Permit

Applications for residence permit may be made to the consulates of Turkey in the foreigner’s home country or, in certain cases; the application may be filed in Turkey

In principle, applications for residence permits shall be filed to the consulates of Turkey in the foreigner’s country of citizenship, or legal residence, as per Article 21 of Law No. 6458. Consulates shall convey the residence permit applications, together with their remarks, to the General Di­rectorate. The General Directorate shall, after finalizing the assessment of the applications, inform the consulate to issue a residence permit or to refuse the application, seeking the opinion of the relevant institutions when and if necessary. The assessment of the applications shall be finalized within ninety days at the latest.

Applications for residence permits may be filed to the governorates in Turkey in certain exceptional cases. Where the related application is pertaining to a long-term residence permit, a student residence permit, a humanitarian residence permit and a residence permit for victims of human trafficking, it is possible to apply to the governorates in Turkey to obtain a residence permit. Moreover, in cases where there is an administrative or judicial decision, or when leaving Turkey is not reasonable and possible for the foreigner, an application may be made to the governorates in Turkey for obtaining the residence permit. The possibility to apply to the governorates in Turkey may also be used for a residence permit which conforms to the new reason for staying, in cases where the reason for which the valid residence permit was issued no longer apply or has been changed.

Renewal of Residence Permits

Pursuant to Article 24 of Law No. 6458, the duration of a residence permit may be extended by the governorates. Applications for renewal shall be made to the governorates within sixty days prior to the expiration of the residence permit and, in any case, before the expiration of the residence permit. Foreigners who apply for the extension of the duration of a residence permit shall be provided with a document; and even if their residence permits have expired, such foreigners may reside in Turkey by virtue of this document until the decision regarding their application has been taken.

Work Permit as Residence Permit

As a result of an increasing amount of foreign investment in Turkey, foreign citizens who come to Turkey for work has correspondingly increased. These foreigners are required to obtain a work permit. Within this framework, Article 27 of Law No. 6458 brings an important novelty; a valid work permit shall be considered as a residence permit. 
Cancellation of Residence Permits

In some cases, residence permit may be cancelled. To illustrate this point, if there is any restriction on applicant or entry prohibition into Turkey or judicial investigation, in that case, residence permit might be cancelled. The examples can be increased. In some cases, administrative supervision and deportation issues may occur. Consulting a lawyer in these situations might be beneficial.

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