Extension of residence permit in Turkey for foreigner

09.10.2023
how to renew your residence permit, read on the Basic Apartment website

A residence permit in the Republic of Turkey (ikamet) is a legal document that gives foreigners the right to reside in the country for more than 90 days on a legal basis. Residents with residence permit status gain access to social and economic programs: medical care, training in government institutions without additional fees, loans of all types, and employment.

Residence permits, compared to full citizenship, are of six types. Each has restrictions on the period of validity and conditions of receipt. The first ikamet is usually issued to a resident of another country for 1 year. The legal residence permit can be extended. To renew a residence permit, a foreigner submits an application and a package of documents to the migration service 60 days before the end of the card’s validity period.

Types of residence permit in Turkey for Russians

A residence permit card (ikamet) is a document identifying a resident of another country. It allows you to legally reside in the country for a certain period of time. It is stated at the legislative level that a Turkish residence permit can be of six types:

  • Short. The card is issued for a period of 6 to 24 months. The grounds for issuance can be very different - tourism activities, a long course of medical treatment or rehabilitation after injuries/surgery, business interests. Also, short-term ikamet is issued for investments in residential or commercial real estate from 50 thousand USD.
  • Long-term residence permit or permanent residence. The document can be obtained by nationals of another country who have lived in the Republic for 8 years or more.
  • Family Ikamet. The document is issued for three years to foreign nationals who are married to Turkish citizens. This type of residence permit in Turkey allows you to obtain full citizenship.
  • Humanitarian Ikamet. The validity period of the card for refugees or victims of emergencies (floods, earthquakes, fires, war, etc.) is limited to one year.
  • Student residence permit. Foreign citizens taking training or advanced training courses at local educational institutions can obtain permission to reside in the country for the entire duration of their studies.
  • Residence permit for victims of crimes based on human trafficking. A card for legal residence in the country is issued for a period of 30 days with the ability to renew the document within three years.

Most Russians and citizens of CIS countries received a tourist residence permit for 12 months in 2021-2022. The global situation in 2022-2023 has led to a massive influx of refugees and refugee tourists to the Republic of Turkey. The government has tightened the conditions for obtaining a residence permit for foreign citizens. Two main innovations:

  • First, the ikamet tourist card is now issued for a period of 6 months (until 2022, the validity period was 12 months). In addition, the migration service requires from foreigners an income certificate with an apostille and a tourist plan.
  • Secondly, since July last year it has been impossible to obtain a residence permit in a number of districts, provinces and municipalities - a total of 1,169 objects. This is due to the influx of migrants, that is, the density of the foreign population in these locations exceeds 20%. The closed regions include 62 districts in Mersin, 53 districts in Istanbul, 75 districts in Adana, 23 districts in Ankara. You can find out more about the list of closed regions on the website of the Turkish Ministry of Internal Affairs.

The restrictions do not apply to foreigners who obtained a residence permit in closed areas before the ban was introduced. They can apply for ikamet card renewal in due course.

When to start the card renewal procedure

A national of another state can legally reside in the Republic with a long-term or short-term residence permit. Regardless of the type of permit issued, the card must be renewed at the end of its validity period. The basis for extension must be the same as when obtaining a residence permit.

You need to start the ikamet renewal procedure 60 days before the expiration date of the foreign citizen’s card. If you submit an application before the specified deadline, the system will automatically reject the request. The 60-day period gives the applicant time during which he can safely renew the residence permit or apply for another type of ikamet in case of refusal. For example, apply to change a tourist card to an investment card with the right to obtain full citizenship.

In addition, a reserve of 60 days allows you to eliminate errors and long periods of consideration of the application by the migration service due to the increased workload on employees. For example, if you postpone the re-registration of a residence permit in Turkey until the last days of the card’s validity, then there is a risk of ending up in an illegal status with all the ensuing consequences. Therefore, do not delay re-issuing your residence permit.

Documents for extending a Turkish residence permit

To renew a residence permit in the country, a foreign citizen submits a package of documents. The list is the same as when receiving your first ikamet card. There is only one difference - you need to attach the original and a copy of the existing residence permit.

List of documents:

  • Health insurance policy. The insurance must be valid during the period of renewal of the residence permit in the country. If the validity period has expired, the insurance must be reissued. Without it, it will not be possible to extend the ikamet.
  • A valid foreign passport. A photocopy and original identification document must be submitted.
  • Papers that confirm legal presence/residence in the country. This could be a Tapu, a real estate lease, a tourist or student card. In the case of renting an apartment, house or commercial property, you must attach a copy of the passport of the owner of the real estate.
  • Receipts for payment of the state fee for issuing an ikamet card.
  • Original and copy of a valid residence permit.
  • Four biometric color photographs. The photographs must meet the requirements of the migration service. They can be clarified on the official website of the organization.
  • Printout of a form with the data of a foreign citizen for renewal of a residence permit. The application form to fill out is available on the migration service website.
  • Certificate of income, salary. An extract from a bank account or a certificate from the place of employment is provided (to confirm the financial solvency of the applicant).
  • Local Tax Identification Number (TIN). The TIN is registered at any tax office in the country upon presentation of a foreign passport.
  • Certificates of marriage, birth of children.

Important! All documents for renewal of an ikamet card are submitted to the service in Turkish. If the submitted list contains certificates and certificates obtained in another country, then they must be translated into the national language of the host country and notarized.

You also need to have a copy of your foreign passport certified by a notary, a real estate lease agreement (usually this is done by the owner of the property), copies of marriage and birth certificates (if available). In addition, the marriage certificate and birth certificate of children are certified by an apostille.

Procedure for renewing a residence permit card

The ikamet card can be renewed an unlimited number of times if the grounds for issuing a new document meet the requirements of the migration service. The registration procedure is similar to obtaining the first residence permit card:

  • A national of another state submits a request-application for renewal of permission to reside in the country (60 days before the expiration of the validity period of the existing card). The application is uploaded to the official portal of the Migration Service. On average, a request is processed within 14 days. Next, the system sets a date for an interview at the migration department to provide documents for a residence permit.
  • department to provide documents for a residence permit.
    On the specified date and time, the foreigner visits the service department with a prepared package of documents. Employees of the organization may request additional certificates and certificates depending on the type of ikamet. The list of documentation for registration/re-issuance of a residence permit is published on the official portal of the service.
  • Interview with employees of the organization. On average, the interview lasts 30 minutes. Due to increased service load, queues are possible - this must be taken into account before planning your visit and daily routine. Another point: the interview is conducted in English or Turkish. If the applicant does not speak these languages, a certified translator must be hired.
  • The result of the interview. The application status is updated automatically on the migration service portal. After checking the documents and grounds for legal residence in the country, the applicant is sent an SMS notification about the extension or refusal of the residence permit. If approved, the new card is sent by the postal service to the foreign citizen’s residential address. If it was refused, you can apply for a different type of card or re-examination.

Renewal costs

The cost of obtaining a second and subsequent residence permit cards, as well as related services, changes quite often. This is due to the economic and geopolitical situation in the world and the Republic itself. For the first half of 2023, the following prices are set:

  • Copies of foreign passport of a foreign citizen - 3-5 Turkish lira (TL). The applicant needs to make photocopies of the main page with the photo, number and organization that issued the document. You also need a copy of the page spread about your last entry into the Republic with the appropriate stamp.
  • Four biometric color photographs - 50-70 TL. The specific cost depends on the price list of the services of a local photo studio. But on average the amount for 4 photos is 50 liras.
  • Medical insurance - from 300 to 2,000 TL. The final amount is determined depending on the list of medical insurance services, the age of the foreigner and the number of cases of coverage.
  • The state fee for creating an ikamet card is 400 TL.
  • Annual tax for residence permit. The amount of the fee depends on the applicant's nationality. For Russians, the tax is 350-400 TL.
  • Postal service for card delivery - about 70 TL.

These are approximate costs for obtaining a second and subsequent residence permits. The final cost also depends on additional services. For example, notarization of documents, translation services, apostille, etc. On average, a Russian will need to pay from 1200 to 3000 TL, depending on the cost of health insurance and the list of additional work.

How to minimize the risk of failure

Obtaining a second and subsequent residence permit in Turkey usually goes without refusal if the foreign citizen responsibly prepares documents and follows the rules. Article 32 of the Civil Code of the Turkish Republic indicates the main reasons for refusal to issue a new or subsequent residence permit cards:

  • An incomplete package of documentation is submitted for consideration of the request.
  • The documents are filled out with errors, there are typos or other inconsistencies.
  • Incorrect or deliberately false information about the applicant is provided.
  • The fact of concealment of violations and criminal records has been established.
  • The purposes of obtaining a residence permit do not correspond to the actual activities of the foreign citizen.
  • The fact of violations upon entry into the country and living conditions was established.
  • The applicant does not have a stable income or the source of funding is questionable.
  • The validity period of the health insurance policy does not cover the desired duration of the residence permit.

To minimize the risk of refusal, a national of another country should adhere to the following recommendations:

  • First, when receiving the first, second or subsequent residence permit, it is advisable to attach to the list of documents an extract from a local bank, which confirms the presence of sufficient funds in the account. It is optimal if the amount is more than 1,000 USD per person per month.
  • Second, apply for an Ikamet card renewal in advance, that is, 60 days before the expiration date of the existing permit. This will give you some wiggle room if you get a refusal. For example, you can apply for another type of residence permit. In addition, a foreign citizen with a valid card can appeal to the judicial authorities if the application is rejected.
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