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All foreign citizens (both EU and non-EU) who are planning on staying in Bulgaria for longer than 90 days must apply for a "Long Term Residence Permit" (ID Card) at the National Migration Directorate in Sofia or at the Immigration Department at their local Police Station. The National Migration Directorate is in charge of issuing, cancelling or extending residence permits in Bulgaria and can be found in local police stations.

The Long Term Residence Permit is issued for one year to non-EU citizens and for five years to EU citizens. After a student has applied, a temporary residence certificate is issued and the long term residence card is issued within three weeks. If any documents are missing, an applicant has seven days to collect and submit them.

EU citizens (including those from non-EU countries that have signed a treaty on visa-free entry) can enter the country using their passport or ID and must apply to the National Migration Directorate for Long Term Residence Permit within 90 days of their arrival in Bulgaria.

On the other hand, non-EU citizens whose countries do not enjoy such bilateral agreements with the Bulgarian state must apply for a "Student type D Visa" prior to entering Bulgaria (valid between 3 to 6 months) at Bulgarian embassies or consular offices in their home country, and must submit an application to the National Migration Directorate for the Long Term Residence Permit upon arriving to Bulgaria before their Visa expires.

After the Bulgarian Long-term Residence Permit has been issued, foreigners failing to present these identification documents to authorities are fined. Lastly, any change of address needs to be reported within five days to the local Police Station.

The procedure for issuing a Residence Permit is described below:

  1. The following documents must be collected by students before they apply for their residence permit:
    1. An application form. The form is in Bulgarian and must be completed in Bulgarian. The following information is required on the form:
      • Applicant's parents' or legal guardians' full names
      • Applicant's children's full names
      • Applicant's full name
      • Applicant's nationality (and any other nationality also held)
      • Applicant's Date and place of birth
      • Applicant's national identification document (passport or ID) number, Date of issue, Date of expiry (if applicable)
      • Applicant's reason for requesting residence permit in Bulgaria (for example, home owner, employment, long-term visa, student type D Visa)
    2. For EU students: two copies of their passport or personal ID. For non-EU students: two copies of their passport with which they have entered Bulgaria and two photocopies of its pages containing the last Bulgarian entry stamp. The passport must be valid for at least a year and a half after the date of the Bulgarian ID card application. A valid passport must be shown every time applicants go to the Migration Office.
    3. For non-EU students: a copy of the Visa with which they have entered Bulgaria.
    4. For returning EU and non-EU students: copy of their Bulgarian ID card
    5. For both EU and non-EU students: 1 passport size photograph - 3.5 x 4.5 cm
    6. For both EU and non-EU students:
      • If the applicant lives on campus: Housing certificate* from the residence hall director.
      • If the applicant lives off campus - a notarized copy of the contract from his or her landlord.
    7. For both EU and non-EU students: Health certificate*
    8. For both EU and non-EU students: Document from the Medical University that the applicant has paid his or her tuition and housing*
    9. For both EU and non-EU students: Certificate from a local bank that the applicant has opened an account with the deposited amount of:
      • 1,500 BGN (£562), If the applicant lives on campus
      • 3,480 BGN (£1,292) for one year duration permit or 1,740 BGN (£642) for 6 month duration permit, if the applicant lives off campus (private accommodation).
    10. For both EU and non-EU students: Enrollment certificate in Bulgarian ("uverenie") issued by the Medical University.
    11. For non-EU students: A Police clearance report* issued in the applicant's home country, certifying that he or she has never been convicted. This document can be used in Bulgaria within 6 months of the issuing date (it is not required for renewal of the Bulgarian ID card). It needs to be legalized and translated into Bulgarian. The translation must be made by the Bulgarian Embassy in the applicant's country or an authorized translation agency in the University town in Bulgaria.
  2. The applicant should take all documents listed above to the Migration Office. There, the applciation shall pay a service fee of 7 BGN (£2) if he or she is an EU citizen or 11 BGN (£4) if a non-EU citizen. The application should be made no later than 14 calendar days before the Visa expires (non-EU students) or before the 90-day entrance period ends (EU students). If the resident permit application is made by a non-EU applicant within a period that is closer than two weeks (less than 14 days) before the visa expiration date, the applicant incurs a fine of 30-100 BGN (£11-37), and if the resident permit application is made by a non-EU applicant after the visa expiration date, the fine is between 500-5,000 BGN (£183-1,862) and the applicant is obliged to leave the country and come back with a visa (non-EU students).
  3. The applicant should go back to the Migration Office in two weeks time. He or she should carry his or her passport, a copy of its first page, and a copy of the housing certificate or rental contract, which is invariably Bulgarian. As the Bulgarian ID card will contain biometric data, a digital photo will be taken and fingerprints. An Application Form ("zaiavlenie") will be printed and checked, filled in and signed and sealed by the National Migration Directorate. The language of the form is in Bulgarian.
    Additionally, the applicant should also pay the following fees (prices are subject to change by the Bulgarian Government):
    • EU students: for ID card processing in 30 days, 18 BGN (£7). For 10 days processing, 36 BGN (£13).
    • Non-EU students: for ID card processing in 30 days, 48 BGN (£18). For 10 days processing, 95 BGN (£35). For 3 days processing, 225 BGN (£95). Additionally, the Stay Extension Fee is 510 BGN (£190) for one year or 210 BGN (£41) for 6 months.
  4. The applicant should go to the police station in three weeks' time to pick up the ID card and bring it to the Medical University Office to make a copy. Usually, Police working hours for the public are 8:30 am - 12:00 am and 1:00 pm ⣓ 4:30 pm.

 

*Legalization Requirements
Only Bulgarian translation at a Bulgarian Embassy without legalization and ApostilleApostille and Bulgarian translation at a Bulgarian embassyLegalization in the Bulgarian embassy and Bulgarian translation
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