Applying for a Visa in Bulgaria



Foreigners who are planning to move to Bulgaria will be needing a residence permit which, when granted, will also apply to the principal applicant's dependents. There are three types of residence permits that may be issued - pensioner, employee and freelance professional - and any of these will be granted depending on the applicant's status. For example, pensioners have to prove that they are receiving retirement income and that they have a bank account and a residence in which to stay in Bulgaria.  

A residence permit in Bulgaria can only be granted when one has obtained a Type D Visa which can be processed in the Bulgarian embassy of one's home country. It is advised that upon arriving in the country, one immediately process his residence permit, which usually takes about a week to be approved.   

A residence permit is valid for a year and may be renewed as the expiry date draws near. To renew a residence permit, one has to have stayed in Bulgaria for at least six months and a day. Those who are planning to stay in the country for good can apply for a permanent residence permit after they have stayed for at least five years. 

The requirements for applying for a Type D Visa will depend on the specific purpose a foreigner comes to live in Bulgaria. For example, those who come for business will need to submit a separate set of documents from those who are here for foreign investment. People who move to Bulgaria for personal reasons such as for retirement also need different to present different documents. Because there are certain grey areas surrounding Bulgaria's entry into the EU, it is best to consult an immigration lawyer so one may properly lodge a visa application and avoid delays and other inconveniences.