A Comprehensive Guide on How to Obtain Bulgarian Residence
There are three types of Bulgarian residency status – temporary (also called extended), permanent and long-term. This article will explain the most common category to obtain a temporary residency card.
Common grounds to obtain Bulgarian residence
All foreign nationals who would like to obtain Bulgarian residence must first apply for a long-term D visa in the nearest Bulgarian embassy or general consulate. There are 5 primary instances for which a D visa is granted:
1. Registration of a Trade Representative Office of a foreign company in Bulgaria;
2.Registration of a Bulgarian limited company employing at least 10 local citizens for no fewer than 6 months;
3. Setting up a foundation
4. Investment in real-estate property – 312,000 €; You may learn more how to buy a real-estate in Bulgaria;
5. Non-EU citizens who are pensioners and have sufficient funds & accommodation to support their stay in Bulgaria;
6.Family reunification in Bulgaria;
7. Bulgarian residence for European citizens.
Our team of immigration lawyers is recommended by the prestigious Legal500.
Our experience shows that the most convenient and affordable way for a foreign national to obtain a Bulgarian D visa and Bulgarian residence permit is by way of registering a foreign company’s trade representative office in Bulgaria. Registering a trade representative office with our law firm, we will not charge you maintenance or annual fees for the registered office address of your trade representative office.
Who is eligible for Bulgarian temporary residence ?
Foreign persons who are otherwise entitled to operate a business in their home country or abroad may establish a trade representative office of their foreign company in Bulgaria. Registering a trade representative office in Bulgaria, you may apply for a long-term D visa and Bulgarian residence permit.
What benefits do I receive on Bulgarian temporary residence permit?
- You receive a Bulgarian ID card for foreigners that allows multiple entries and stay in Bulgaria;
- Holders of a Bulgarian residence permit can stay legally in Romania, Croatia and Cyprus for 90 days in any 180 days period visa free;
- You may renew your Bulgarian residency card for up to 5 years;
- Holding a temporary residence permit for 5 years, you are eligible to apply for a Bulgarian permanent residence permit;
- Foreign nationals who hold Bulgarian permanent residence and reside in Bulgaria for 183 days annually in any 60 months period can apply for a Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization;
- You enjoy a relaxed visa application process among Schengen Area countries;
- You may apply for family reunification in Bulgaria.
How long can I stay in Bulgaria with a temporary residence permit?
A Bulgarian temporary residence permit is valid for either 6 or 12 months, and it can be renewed for a period of up to 5 years. If you are not eligible for a Bulgarian permanent residence you still can renew your temporary residence.
How many years do I have to stay in Bulgaria to obtain a Bulgarian permanent residence?
You have to live in Bulgaria for 30 months in any 5 years period in order to change your temporary residency card to permanent residency. The registration of a trade representative office in Bulgaria allows foreign persons to easily obtain a temporary residence permit that is valid for up to 1 year, and is renewable annually. The Bulgarian permanent residence card is valid for 5 years.
How many years do I have to stay in Bulgaria to obtain a Bulgarian long-term residence?
You have to live in Bulgaria for 50 months in any 5 years period in order to change your temporary residency card to long-term residency.
How many years do I have to stay in Bulgaria to obtain Bulgarian citizenship?
The Bulgarian Citizenship Act allows non-EU nationals who resided in Bulgaria for five years on permanent residency to apply for a Bulgarian citizenship and passport. The immigration lawyers at Markony Immigration Services LLP can assist you to file your Bulgarian citizenship application with the Ministry of Justice.
How long does it take to register a trade representative office in Bulgaria?
The average time required to register a trade representative office in Bulgaria, and to prepare the requisite set of D visa application documents is approximately 15 working.
Am I allowed to conduct business under the trade representative office?
The sole purpose of a trade representative office is to promote, and eventually expand, your foreign business in Bulgaria. You are not allowed to be involved in any economic activities of the TRO. We recommend a Single Person Private Limited EOOD company for doing business in Bulgaria.
How many representatives am I allowed to add to the TRO?
The Bulgarian law allows foreign companies to register up to 3 foreign trade representative personnel.
Do I need to employ local citizens?
Registering a trade representative office, you are Not required to hire Bulgarian employees.
Do I need to pay for a registered office address?
No fee for a registered office address. We will provide a top location registered office address for your Bulgarian representative office free of charge for as long as you need!
Do I need to pay maintenance fees for the TRO?
No maintenance, annual or hidden fees!
Can I bring my family to Bulgaria?
Holders of Bulgarian residence can apply for family reunification in Bulgaria for their family members. The term “family” strictly refers to a spouse and dependent children who are under the age of 18 years old and not married.
What is the embassy fee for a D visa application?
The non-refundable embassy fee for a Type D visa application is 100 €.
How long does it take for my D visa application to be considered?
The Bulgarian embassy processes all D visa applications within 30 working days on application.
Do I need to attend an interview?
All applications for a Bulgarian D visa must be submitted in person. There is no formal interview process.
Please contact us for more information about registration of a trade representative office in Bulgaria and applying for a Type D visa and Bulgarian residence permit.