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Turkish Residency Application

Many people moving to Turkey now apply for a Resident Permit in Turkey and is a straightforward procedure.
Enclosed are the main points when applying for a Turkish Residence Application.

Why and how to get a Turkish Residency Permit

Why get a Turkish residency permit ? A residency permit allows you to reside in Turkey for longer than the standard 90 day tourist visa issued at the airport on arrival allows. The government are trying to put a stop to those that simply pop out of the country on visa trips and return a few hours later with a new visa. Recently there have been talks that authorities intend to only issue tourist visas for a 90 day period in every 180 days. This is fine for most tourists visiting infrequently, but for those intending to stay for longer, or reside in their property on a more permanent basis, they would be limited simply to 90 days in every 180. On a good note, since April 2011, the authorities have reduced the cost of 1 to 5 year residency permits so it is now affordable.

How long does a residency permit last ? It is possible to apply for a permit for between a one and 5 year period. A 2 year permit is normally issued on first application. Prices differ according to length of permit applied for. To renew, you must reapply within 15 days of expiry and Turkish Kimlik (citizenship) can be applied for after 5 years residency.

How to I apply for a Turkish residence permit ? It is best to know what the process entails before setting out to get a Turkish residence permit. Since the prices of permits changed in 2011 and numbers applying have increased, a growing number of local companies and experts willing to walk you through the process for a small fee can now be found advertising in local foreign press. This is certainly worth considering the first time as it can be a decidedly time consuming and frustrating procedure unless set out early, have a lot of patience, know what you are doing, have a grasp of the language and know where you are going! Our guide below is intended to show you what you need and help you best tackle the process if you are going it alone.

  • Make sure you have everything you need in advance.
  • You will need the following:
    • 8 Passport size photos.
    • 2 copies of your rental agreement stating where you live etc. or your TAPU/ Turkish title deeds. (Take the original with you as well in case they ask to see it).
    • 2 Passport Copies (ensure your passport is valid for the full time you are applying for the permit)
    • Your Turkish tax number
    • A plastic residency folder (go to a stationers and ask for a folder for residency application, it is just a simple plastic folder but they dont accept just any folder so best get the correct one to save time in advance!)
    • A bank statement issued recently proving you have sufficient funds to look after yourself whilst residing in Turkey. If you have a Turkish bank account you can ask them for a printed breakdown of funds in your accounts.

NB: It is best to carry all the above with you on the day you are applying. Also note that it is best to start early, government offices shut between 12.00 and 13.30, nothing official will get seen to during this time.

How to start the process of applying for Turkish Residency ?
(If re applying keep in mind that the passport police do not tend to give you the forms or accept an application unless it is within 14 days of your residency permit expiry)
  • Got to the Passport Police. Take your passport, previous residency book if you have it and your tax number. They give you 2 forms; the Kaymakamlak Makamina that gets stamped as you go around and the Yabancilar Tarafindan Verilecek Ikamet Beyannamasi, the declaration for a residency permit, this normally has to be typed and not filled in by hand (do this at the end of the procedure) but check with them in advance. Also check if they accept the fee for the residency book or if you have to go elsewhere, normally the PTT (post office), pay and get a receipt of payment for them to accept it.
  • Register with your local Muhtar. You will need 2 passport photos, your Tapu or rental agreement saying you live in their area and a passport copy. It has been said that many Muthars now charge a fee for their services, this is a controversial subject as fees can differ considerably.
  • Go to the Tax Office (Maliye) and pay your residency fee. You will need to take your tax number, forms from the passport police and register to gain a slip first, then head to the cashier with your issued slip and make the payment and collect and keep the receipt.
  • Go to the Kaymakamlik (Government Building). Take your forms and gain another stamp.
  • Pay for your residency book. Areas differ so ask the passport police if they accept payment and issue this or if you have to go elsewhere.
  • Get your declaration typed if necessary (see first point).
  • Return to the Passport Police. Put all your documents in your special plastic folder and take them back to the Passport Police who will then look through and check, take your passport and let you know how long your application will take and when your passport and residency book will return for collection.

This may sound like a lot but if you find out where the offices etc. are in advance it can be completed in a few hours. If in any doubt, employ the services of a local specialist or a take a trusted Turkish speaker with you.

Disclaimer: The provided info is intended as general awareness and advice only and relevant based on personal experience of our customers and the author at time of publishing. You should be aware that processes, laws and procedures change regularly and check with your local authorities or a specialist in your area if in any doubt.