Types of residence permit in Turkey: A Guide for Foreigners

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If you’re a foreigner planning to stay in Turkey for a certain period, you must have a residence permit document. This document is issued by competent authorities, and it allows you to live in a specific location in Turkey for a particular time. This document is crucial in ensuring public order and protection, and it is issued upon request and application by the foreigner together with the necessary documents to prove that he or she fulfills the related conditions. In Turkey, there are different types of residence permits granted by the Immigration Administration.

Here are the types of residence permits in Turkey:

1. Short-Term Residence Permit

Foreigners who:

  • Come to Turkey for scientific research
  • Establish businesses or commercial connections
  • Own immovable property
  • Participate in on-the-job training programs
  • Attend educational or similar programs
  • Wish to stay for tourism purposes
  • Intend to receive medical treatment
  • Are required to stay in Turkey under a request or a decision of judicial or administrative authorities
  • Transfer from a family residence permit
  • Attend a Turkish language course or an education program, research, internship, or course by way of a public agency
  • Apply within six months upon graduation from a higher education program in Turkey
  • Do not work in Turkey but will invest within the scope and amount determined by the Council of Ministers
  • Their foreign spouses, their foreign minor children, or foreign dependent children can apply for a short-term residence permit.

Family Residence Permit

A family residence permit can be granted to foreign spouses, foreign children, or foreign minor children of their spouse, dependent foreign children or dependent foreign children of their spouse of Turkish citizens, persons within the scope of Article 28 of Law No 5901, or foreigners holding one of the residences permits as well as refugees and subsidiary protection beneficiaries.

Student Residence Permit

Foreigners who will receive primary or secondary education and do not hold a family residence permit or shall attend an associate, undergraduate, graduate, or postgraduate program or receive education for specialty in medicine (TUS) or dentistry (DUS) are issued residence permits.

Student residence permits to ensure the student is only the supporter of spouse and children in family residence permit applications. It does not provide any rights to the other relatives about residence permits.

2. Long-Term Residence Permit

It will be given to foreigners who have invested more than 400,000 in one of the fields such as buying a property, blocking money in the bank, or any kind of other investment.

On the other hand, the long-term residence permit can be issued by the governorates upon approval of the Ministry to foreigners that have continuously resided in Turkey for at least eight years on a permit or to foreigners that meet the conditions set out by the Ministry.

Refugees, conditional refugees, and subsidiary protection beneficiaries, as well as persons under temporary protection and humanitarian residence permit holders, are not entitled to the right of transfer to a long-term residence permit.

Humanitarian Residence Permit

A humanitarian residence permit may be issued in situations where:

  • The best interest of the child is of concern
  • Foreigners cannot be removed from Turkey, or their departure from Turkey is not reasonable or possible
  • The absence of a removal decision in respect of the foreigner under Article 55
  • There is a judicial appeal against the actions carried out, throughout the removal actions of the applicant
  • Foreigners should be allowed to enter and stay in Turkey due to emergencies or given the protection of the national interests as well as reasons of public order and security
  • The absence of the possibility to obtain one of the other types of residence permits due to their situation precludes granting a residence permit.

Permit for Victims of Human Trafficking

A residence permit for victims of human trafficking shall be granted to foreigners who are victims of human trafficking or where there is strong circumstantial evidence that they might be victims.

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