• Transition of Residence Permit System Creates Online Renewal Process; Causes Backlogs
  • August 18, 2015
  • Law Firm: Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen Loewy LLP - New York Office
  • Foreign nationals filing permit applications may see long lines at the Migration Directorate office due to the transition of the residence permit application process. The transition has also caused a temporary system outage and new processes for residence permit applicants and those seeking exit documents.

    Changes Affecting Initial Residence Permit Applicants

    It may be possible for applicants with appointments booked prior to the closing of all Istanbul Residence Card application centers except Vatan to keep their appointment dates. However, the Migration Directorate has not provided clear guidance on this issue.

    Initial residence permit applicants must appear at an appointment for their spouse and both parents must appear at an appointment for children. Powers of attorney are no longer accepted.

    Initial residence permit applicants can request exit documents - which provide clearance to leave Turkey during application processing - at their appointment. Those seeking residence permit renewals must present a ticket for international travel without an appointment at the Migration Directorate office to obtain exit documents.

    Online Renewals Possible

    Applicants can now file Residence Card renewal applications online without an in-person appearance. Applicants must apply to renew their Residence Card at least 60 days prior to expiration, print out a confirmation page and send it to the Migration Directorate within 30 days. A new Residence Card is mailed to the applicant.

    Process Changes at the Migration Directorate Office

    If a Residence Card fails to be delivered to an applicant, the card will be returned to the local Migration Directorate office instead of the police, as was previously done.

    Lastly, amendments to applications must now be completed in person at the Migration Directorate office.

    What This Means for Foreign Nationals

    Foreign nationals will face additional administrative hurdles when seeking Residence Cards until the Migration Directorate clarifies the new procedures. However, Residence Card renewal applicants should benefit from the new online application process.

    Foreign nationals with appointments for initial residence permits booked prior to the closing of the application centers should contact their immigration professional to determine how to reschedule their appointments.