Foreigners who would stay in Turkey beyond the duration of a visa or visa exemption period (in general, longer than ninety days) should obtain a residence permit. Residence permit is the ID which is being issued by the Ministry of Interior of Republic of Turkey and gives the holder the right to stay in Turkey legally within the validity period. However, for working in Turkey legally an additional work permit should be obtained and residence permit alone cannot be sufficient.

As it is envisaged by the Turkish laws regarding international migration, it will be possible to lodged with the consulates in the foreigner’s country of citizenship or legal stay for obtaining a residence permit in Turkey. However this system has not become operational yet and start date of this application will be announced by the relevant authorities in the future as soon as the system will be adopted. Till the adoption of this procedure, applications for residence permits shall be lodged with the governorates and local Migration Directorate offices within Turkey.

Pursuant to the Law on Foreigners and International Protection No. 6458 of Turkey regarding migration, accompanying to another foreigner is no longer possible and, thus, each individual should apply for the residence permit and residence permit documents following their applications shall be issued separately for each foreigner.

Turkish residence permit applications can be made in person as well as by legal representative, consultant or lawyer of the foreigner. However, if the administration deems it necessary, it may also require foreigners to be present at the time of application or during the interview to be executed.

By the International Labour Code No. 6735, the provision stating that residence permit applications may also be made through Authorized Intermediaries has been included in the scope of Article 21 of the Law No. 6458. Authorized Intermediary refers to the institutions or organizations authorized by the Presidency of Republic of Turkey and their qualifications and task frameworks shall be set forth by regulation. However, as of the date of this essay, there is not authorized intermediary appointed in Turkey for accepting the residence permit applications, thus the application for a residence permit should be made to the Migration Institution directly via online system.

Six types of residence permits shall be issued in accordance with the Article 30 of the Law on Foreigners and International Protection No. 6458, and first, extension or transfer applications shall be made online via e-Residence system (

Note that, applying with wrong or false documents and making errors while application may result with refusal of residence permit and/or deportation from the country. Thus, residence permit application requires special care and expertise. As another important point, if an application is refused the foreigner might have additional right to re-apply if he/she can meet the certain conditions.

For more information about the application procedures and requirement for a residence permit in Turkey and for re-applying for your refused residence permit applications please consult to one of our experts.

by Bünyamin Esen, Senior Migration Expert and Founding Partner