Bulgarian residence for EU citizens
EU citizens can apply for Bulgarian residence and Bulgarian ID card by having a proof of accommodation and sufficient funds to support their stay in Bulgaria. This is administrative service provided by the Migration Directorate. The residence application is lodged at the local Migration Office in the district where the accommodation is located.
Why should I become a resident of Bulgaria?
The residency card granted by the Migration Office, a part of the Ministry of Interior is a precondition to obtain a Bulgarian tax residency granted by the Tax Office, a part of the Ministry of Finance. Tax residency is definitely the strongest reason to consider applying for a Bulgarian residency card.
Apart form tax residency, the residency card is goot for applying for opening bank accounts in Bulgaria and family reunification.
Time to obtain Bulgarian residence
EU citizens are granted Bulgarian residence within 3 working days after the application is received. If you decide to proceed with our services, you can expect the below schedule:
Day 1 – you will lodge your application
Day 2 – you will be photographed in the local Migration Office
Day 3 – your residency card is issued and you can collect it
If you cannot stay for longer than 2 working days in Bulgaria, you can grant a power of attorney to our law firm and we will collect the residency card on your behalf and courier to your address abroad.
Bulgarian residence for UK citizens
UK citizens can apply for Bulgarian residence as EU citizens by end of 31.12.2020. After the Brexit transitional period, UK citizens will be required a long-term D visa in order to apply for Bulgarian residence. A D visa applicant has to satisfy the requirements of one of the 15 D visa categories. UK citizens can obtain a D visa and Bulgarian residency by way of establishing a trade representative office in Bulgaria.
Family members of UK citizens
Family members of UK citizens can apply for family reunification by 31.12.2021 if the main applicant got Bulgarian residence by the end of the Brexit transition period of 31.12.2020.
Family reunification for non-EU family members of EU citizens
Once you have been granted Bulgarian residency you can apply for family reunification for your non-EU family members. The family members have to enter Bulgaria on a valid Bulgarian C visa or a valid Schengen visa. The family reunification application is considered within 3–5 working days of submission.
Our law firm can assist you with the preparation of a sponsor letter for your family members who intend to apply for a Bulgarian C visa. When applying for a C visa with the nearest Bulgarian embassy or general consulate, you have to show substance in Bulgaria by one of the below ways:
- Setting up a limited company in Bulgaria
- Getting registered as a freelancer in Bulgaria
- Exchanging an EU/ UK driving license for a Bulgarian one
- Registering with a local General Practicioner
Family reunification for unmarried cohabiting couples
Since the begining of 2019 cohabiting couples can no longer apply for family reunification in Bulgaria. To be eligible for family reunficiation, you have to be married and provide a legalized marriage certificate.
Who is considered a family member?
- Children below 21 years of age
Siblings and extended family members are not allowed to apply for family reunification in Bulgaria.
Advantages of applying for family reunification in Bulgaria
- Family members are not required to provide a CBR check.
- Renting or buying a property in Bulgaria is more affordable than in any other EU member state.
- Legal fees in Bulgaria are much lower than that of immigration lawyers in the United Kingdom or in any other EU member state.
- Bulgarian migration authorities are trying to attract an educated labour force from non-EU member states and therefore, there is a relaxed immigration policy on non-EU citizens.
What do you get when you are granted Bulgarian residence?
- The Bulgarian residence is a precondtion to qualify for tax residency status in Bulgaria.
- You can apply for family reunification for your non-EU family members.
- The Bulgarian residency card will guarantee hassle-free visits to Bulgaria and other EU countries for British citizens after Brexit.
- The Bulgarian ID card is a precondition to exchange your driving license for a Bulgarian driving licence.
- Holding a Bulgarian ID card, you don’t need your passport or national ID card to register a company in Bulgaria.
- Holding a Bulgarian ID card, you can register your car in Bulgaria and start saving taxes.
For more details about obtaining Bulgarian residence, please feel free to contact us.