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Bulgaria – Residency

Bulgaria is a beautiful country located in Southeast Europe that offers a rich history and culture, as well as stunning natural scenery. To live and work in Bulgaria, foreign nationals need to obtain residency status. There are different types of residency available, depending on the length of stay and the purpose of the visit.

Types of Residency in Bulgaria

Short-Term Visa

A short-term visa is suitable for individuals who wish to stay in Bulgaria for a period of up to 90 days. This type of visa is granted for tourism, business, or family visits, and does not allow for work or study.

Foreign nationals who wish to stay in Bulgaria for longer than 90 days must apply for an extension of their short-term visa or obtain a different type of residency.

Long-Term Visa

A long-term visa is suitable for individuals who wish to stay in Bulgaria for a period of up to one year. This type of visa can be granted for purposes such as work, study, or family reunification.


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To obtain a long-term visa, foreign nationals must provide evidence of the purpose of their visit and meet the eligibility criteria for the specific visa category. They may also be required to provide proof of financial means to support themselves during their stay, as well as a criminal background check and a medical examination.

Permanent Residency

Permanent residency is suitable for individuals who plan to live and work in Bulgaria indefinitely. Permanent residency can be granted to foreign nationals who have lived in Bulgaria for at least five years, or who have made significant contributions to the country’s economy or society.

To obtain permanent residency, foreign nationals must meet the eligibility criteria, which can include a points-based system that takes into account factors such as age, education, work experience, and language proficiency. They must also demonstrate their financial means to support themselves and their dependents, as well as provide proof of health insurance coverage.

Applying for Residency in Bulgaria

The process for applying for residency in Bulgaria varies depending on the type of residency that is being sought. In general, the process involves the following steps:

  1. Determine the appropriate visa category based on the purpose of the visit and the eligibility criteria.
  2. Prepare the application and the required documents, which can include evidence of financial means, health insurance coverage, criminal background check, and medical examination.
  3. Submit the application and the required documents to the Bulgarian embassy or consulate in the applicant’s home country.
  4. Pay the application fee, which varies depending on the type of residency that is being sought.

The processing time for residency applications can vary depending on the type of residency and the volume of applications, but it can take several weeks.

Documents Required for Residency in Bulgaria

To apply for residency in Bulgaria, foreign nationals must provide a number of documents, including:

  • Valid passport
  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage certificate, if applicable
  • Criminal background check
  • Medical examination
  • Proof of financial means
  • Proof of health insurance coverage

It is important to note that these requirements can vary depending on the type of residency that is being sought. Applicants should consult the Bulgarian embassy or consulate in their home country for detailed information.

Registration in Bulgaria

Foreign nationals moving to Bulgaria must register with the local immigration authorities within 30 days of arrival.
-This can be done at the local police station or immigration office.
-The residency card must be carried at all times and must be presented to immigration officials upon request.

Up-to-Date Information on Residence in Bulgaria

-The official website of the Bulgarian Ministry of Justice provides reliable and up-to-date information on residency in Bulgaria.
-The website includes information on the types of residency available, the process for applying for residency, and the required documents.
-The website is available in both English and Bulgarian and can be accessed at https://www.justice.bg/

-The Bulgarian embassy or consulate in your home country is another source of information on residency in Bulgaria.
-Embassy staff can provide advice on the process for applying for residency and can assist with the preparation of the required documents.
-Contact information for the Bulgarian embassy or consulate in your home country can be found on the official website of the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, available at https://www.mfa.bg/en/pages/default.aspx.


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