What documents are needed for a residence permit in Turkey?

What documents are needed for a residence permit in Turkey - how to properly fill out an application for a residence permit

Since 2022, the number of citizens who want to move to Turkey and obtain a residence permit has increased significantly. A Turkish residence permit (ikamet) gives the right to stay in the eastern state's territory legally. The migration service determines the length of stay in the country. Goals are taken into account. Having a family or long-term ikamet gives the right to get an official job in Turkey, conduct business, and send children to school.

But if previously it was possible to easily obtain a tourist residence permit, then in 2023 the law was amended to make it much more difficult to obtain. Such changes are associated with a large influx of migrants. Along with tightening the rules, the list of areas where ikamet cannot be obtained has also increased.

Types of ikamet:

  • Short. It is issued for a period of up to two years. Foreign citizens who have real estate in the country, as well as persons who study at a university, are participants in student exchange programs, and are treated in local hospitals can receive ikamet.
  • Long term. This ikamet has no expiration date. Available to foreigners living in Turkey for more than 8 years.
    Family. Valid for 3 years. Issued to spouses of Turkish citizens, their children and minors under their care.
  • Student. Issued to persons who receive secondary education and do not have a family residence permit, students of higher educational institutions, as well as those who improve their qualifications at Turkish universities.
  • Humanitarian. The Turkish state provides ikamet for 1 year. Requested when unusual situations arise. For example, if a foreign citizen needs the opportunity to return home.
  • Tourist. Can be obtained by any citizen who has the opportunity and desire to get to know Turkey while living on its territory.

The registration rules are the same for everyone. The main condition is to provide reasons for staying in the country and collect the necessary documents.

List of documents for residence permit in Turkey

Preparing references before submitting your application is fundamental to approval. To legalize and recognize some documents at the international level, an apostille will be required. The procedure applies to:

  • birth certificates, marriage (divorce) certificates;
  • certificates of family composition;
  • certificates;
  • diplomas;
  • certificates and certificates of additional education, advanced training, etc.

Before submitting an application for a residence permit, you must clarify in advance where an apostille is required.

Now let’s take a closer look at the list of basic documents for obtaining ikamet.


The initial application is completed on the website e-ikamet.goc.gov.tr. It must be filled out while in the country, otherwise the application will be automatically rejected. During registration, you specify your email address (gmail, yahoo, outlook, hotmail or yandex). Filling out the form became an innovation in 2023 (when submitting documents for a tourist residence permit). The questionnaire indicates the purpose of arrival in the country, sources of income for the required period of stay, etc. After filling out all the fields, the site will ask you to select a date for a face-to-face interview with the migration office. The completed application is printed, signed, and placed in a folder with other documents.

International passport

The passport must be valid for another six months after the expiration of the Ikamet. For example, if a residence permit is issued for a year, then the passport must be valid for at least 1.5 years. The passport is translated, and copies certified by a notary are attached to the application. We need pages with photos and stamps placed at the Turkish border's last crossing. It is prohibited to transfer documents and personal data to strangers. Such actions may result in identifying information being associated with illegal transactions. Therefore, we recommend that you take the issue of preparing documents seriously.

Biometric photos

There are several requirements for biometric photos, but almost all Turkish salons know them. The citizen is photographed against a white background (no later than 6 months before applying ikamet). The photo cannot be taken in a group or against a dark background. This will make it difficult for the citizen to identify himself and the ikamet application will be rejected. In addition, you will need a digital version of the photo, which can be used in case of disputes.

  • Dimensions - 5x6 cm (as for a passport).
  • The face and hairstyle are located strictly in the center and are visible.
  • Approximately 80% of the photo is devoted to the face, meaning that from the bottom to the top of the head, the distance is 32-36 mm.
  • There should be no blurry, overexposed areas or other unclear areas. The effect of altered eye color is prohibited.
  • You cannot be photographed wearing headdresses (except for religious occasions).
  • The ears and neck are freed from hair.
  • If a headdress is worn, the face is completely exposed. No shadow should fall on it.
  • It is forbidden to squint your eyes. The face should be relaxed.
  • Light makeup is possible, but it is better not to tint your lips. Earrings must be removed.
  • Photos are printed on matte paper.

Similar requirements apply to children's photographs. The child must be alone in the photo (without a parent).

Confirmation of grounds

The basis for obtaining ikamet is the purpose of staying in Turkey. Recently, the rules have become stricter in relation to some residence permits. Thus, foreigners who provide rental housing as a basis began to receive refusals more often. And those who received a residence permit earlier can no longer renew it on similar grounds. You will have to give other arguments to get a positive decision from the migration service.

To be approved, you will need to attach the following to your application:

  • paid hotel reservations, plane tickets;
  • a detailed travel plan with a list of cities and attractions;
  • agreement on the purchase of real estate, agreement on ownership;
  • implemented business project;
  • certificate of completion of training or internship at a university;
  • certificates, extracts from Turkish clinics about treatment;
  • lease agreement, etc.

Medical insurance

Insurance is a key aspect without which it is impossible to obtain a residence permit. It must be issued in the Republic of Turkey and cover the entire stay. When applying for the first time, a foreigner-only needs to take out a health insurance policy. This can be done at any company that issues such insurance. After a year of residence, the law obliges you to take out a compulsory health insurance policy SGK. To obtain insurance, you need to undergo a medical examination. If a citizen has dangerous diseases that threaten others, the conclusion of an insurance contract may be refused. People over 65 also often face problems when obtaining health insurance. Companies do not continuously issue policies to such individuals. They tend to be more expensive.

The Migration Service requires that the insurance must include the following nuances:

  • provision of emergency medical care;
  • reimbursement for medications;
  • service in public clinics;
  • hospital treatment.

For persons under 18, taking out a policy is voluntary except for family ikamet, when each family member must have health insurance.

Fee for card and residence permit

The foreigner bears the costs of a residence permit. They start from $118: the amount is affected by the validity period of the ikamet and the applicant's citizenship. A foreigner pays a state fee for the card of 356 TRY (approximately $19). The card is an identity document and acts as an analogue of an internal passport. Fees can be paid online, through a POS terminal, or at a bank. Receipts for payment of residence permits and cards are placed in a folder with all documents.

Documents on the applicant's solvency

When filling out the application, all income is declared. They must be sufficient to stay in Turkey for the stated period. But sometimes the migration service requires you to provide documents about your level of income and financial stability:

  • For working citizens - a certificate of income in Turkish, certified by a notary and at the Turkish consulate. The document is needed to confirm that the citizen has an amount in his account that exceeds the minimum wage in Turkey (for 2023, this is 11,402 liras).
  • For pensioners - an extract on the amount of pension certified by the consulate. The certificate is translated into Turkish. The pension must be at least 4,500 liras per month. If the amount needs to be increased, information about additional sources of income is provided. If they are not available, the issuance of a residence permit may be refused.

Certificate of ownership of real estate or lease agreement

One of these documents is required to confirm your residential address. In addition to the certificate of housing ownership (TAPU) and the lease agreement certified by a notary, certificates from the hostel (for students) are accepted. In case of living in rented housing, copies of the apartment owner’s passport and TAPU are attached to certified copies.

Certificate of no criminal record

The foreigner provides a certificate of no criminal record. It is issued by the competent authority in the state he is a citizen. In Turkey, it can be obtained from the Police Headquarters (Emniyet Genel Müdürlüğü). The certificate is issued based on a certified copy of the passport and an application for receipt. The waiting time is 5-7 working days. The certificate is valid for one year from the date of receipt.

Local Taxpayer Identification Number

An individual tax number is an analog of an identification code. Consists of 10 digits. You receive it once and do not change throughout your life. The TIN will be needed to pay the state fee (for obtaining a Turkish residence permit). You can obtain a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) remotely on the Tax Administration website. The application is submitted by filling out a particular form. An electronic copy of the international passport is attached to the application. You can also contact the tax office at your location. It will only be possible to obtain a residence permit with a TIN.

The validity period of the residence permit

The period for which a residence permit is issued in Turkey depends on the purpose of the stay. If necessary, it can be extended. Student ikamet is issued for the entire study period, family - for three years, and short-term - for one year. If a citizen leaves the country, the permit will be revoked. A long-term residence permit is granted to citizens who have been in Turkey for at least eight years and have not left it for more than a year in 5 years and for more than 180 days a year.

Typically, a residence permit is issued to everyone who has collected the necessary package of documents and provided compelling reasons for staying on the state's territory. Even despite the tightening of requirements for candidates, the refusal rate remains at a consistently low level. If inaccuracies are identified in the documents or the required evidence is missing, 30 days are given to eliminate the inaccuracies.

Everyone has their reasons for relocation. For some, this is an opportunity to set up a business, for others, it is a desire to live in a comfortable climate, for others, it is an investment in the future. Buying property in Turkey is not only about investing money. Real estate provides the opportunity to obtain ikamet. The Basic Apartment company assists everyone who dreams of owning their home in a sunny country. We will select comfortable apartments and offer support at all transaction stages. We comply with legal regulations. Contact realtors and tell them about your preferences so that they can choose the best option.

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