Residence permit for foreigners in Serbia

Despite the fact that the Republic of Serbia is known for the immigration of its residents, it is also increasingly becoming a destination for immigrants.

For various reasons, a large number of foreigners come to Serbia and stay in Serbia. Serbia’s immigration rate continues to grow, and foreigners in transit and foreigners seeking asylum are not considered.

There is no doubt that most foreigners staying in Serbia are married to Serbian citizens, while the other major groups are foreigners who conduct business activities in Serbia or are employed by domestic and international employers registered in Serbia.

The Serbian government has revised the “Individual Income Tax Law” and the “Social Security Contribution Law”, and adopted many tax relief measures for the employment of citizens and foreigners. It should be noted that the Serbian government has also recently passed Regulation 1, which came into effect on February 22, 2020. The regulation stipulates the following criteria for residence permits:

Foreign innovative entrepreneurs;
Foreign citizens with a higher degree of education;
Investor in Serbian company.
Considering the importance of this regulation for obtaining a residence permit in Serbia, it deserves special attention, and we will explain it in detail in one of the following blogs.

In any case, we will go back to clarify the foreigner’s residence and residence permit for foreigners in the Republic of Serbia. First of all, we should explain what legal acts govern the residence permit and right of residence of foreigners in Serbia.

The residence permit of foreigners in Serbia is governed by the Aliens Act. In addition to this law, it is important to mention the “Foreigners Employment Law”, which stipulates the conditions and procedures for hiring foreign employees in the Republic of Serbia. However, before the foreigner even starts to work in Serbia (that is, to engage in business activities in the Republic of Serbia), a residence permit should be granted on the grounds prescribed by law, which is a precondition for obtaining a work permit.

The Aliens Law divides the residence of foreigners into three types:

The longest stay is 90 days;
Temporary residence
Permanent residency.
What are the conditions for foreigners to enter the territory of the Republic of Serbia?
Before granting a foreigner’s right of residence in Serbia, the foreigner should be granted the right to enter the Republic of Serbia, that is, a visa should be obtained.

We should point out that international treaties and government decisions allow certain foreign citizens to enter the Republic of Serbia visa-free, and the government also has the right to decide to allow citizens of certain countries to enter Serbia only with an ID card and not a passport. Unless otherwise stipulated in international treaties, foreigners who can enter Serbia without a visa or passport can stay in Serbia for no more than 90 days within 180 days from the date of first entry. .

There are three types of visas in the legal system of the Republic of Serbia:

Airport transit visa (visa “A”);

Short-term visa (“C” visa)-allows entry into the Republic of Serbia within any 180 days, transit in the Republic of Serbia or stay in the Republic of Serbia for no more than 90 days from the date of first entry. It shall be issued in the Republic of Serbia once, twice or more times;

Long-term visa (“D” visa)-allows entry and stay in the Republic of Serbia between 90 and 180 days in order to apply for and obtain a temporary residence permit.

What does “stay up to 90 days” mean?

The longest period of residence of foreigners in Serbia is 90 days, that is, within 180 days from the date of first entry (unless otherwise stipulated in the international treaty) without a visa, the residence time shall not exceed 90 days (unless the international treaty otherwise Regulations), as well as on a short-term visa (visa “C”) based on the length of stay.

Do I need to register the visit and stay of foreigners to the police station?

Yes it is!

Legal entities and persons that provide foreigners with monetary compensation accommodation, as well as legal persons and individuals that receive foreigners for private and family visits, must report and notify the status of such stay within 24 hours from the date the foreigner arrives in the country Police station. Stay. If a foreigner uses the accommodation in the above-mentioned other ways, the foreigner is obliged to report his residence and change of residence within the same deadline.

Where should the right of abode of foreigners be registered?

The residence of foreigners in Serbia should be registered as follows:

At the police station of the foreigner’s place of residence,
What is the basis of temporary residence in Serbia?
Temporary residence is a residence permit issued to foreigners who intend to stay in the Republic of Serbia for more than 90 days. All reasons for temporary residence permits should be divided into three categories:

  1. According to work, namely:

Specialization, professional training and practice;
The performance of commercial activities or other professional activities (the establishment of a corporate body);
Perform religious ceremonies.

  1. According to the educational process, namely:
    School or study the Serbian language;
    Participate in international exchange programs for students;
    Scientific research or other scientific research or educational activities.
  2. Based on personal reasons, namely:

family gathering;
Medical or nursing
Ownership of real property or real property;
Humanitarian reasons
The status of victims of human trafficking.
In addition to these clearly stated reasons, the above-mentioned “Government Regulations” also provide new reasons for temporary residence of foreigners.

The application for the temporary residence permit or its extension shall be submitted by the foreigner to the competent authority in person. The application for extending the issued temporary residence permit should be submitted within three months to thirty days before the expiration of the temporary residence permit.

The maximum period of approval for temporary residence is one year, and the same period can be extended according to the reasons for the stay and the reasons for the temporary stay. The temporary residence permit should be affixed with a temporary residence label on the foreigner’s passport.

How to obtain a permanent residence permit?

First, we should explain the right of permanent residence in Serbia.

Permanent residence is a permit for foreigners to stay long-term in the Republic of Serbia.

Foreigners should be granted permanent residency based on five reasons. All foreigners who meet the following conditions should obtain permanent residency:

  • According to the temporary residence permit, have lived continuously in the Republic of Serbia for more than five years;
  • Married a citizen of the Republic of Serbia or a foreigner with a permanent residence permit on the grounds of family reunification or spent at least three years on a temporary residence permit in the form of a civil union;
  • Be a minor with temporary residence in the Republic of Serbia, if one of the parents is a citizen of the Republic of Serbia or a foreigner with a permanent residence permit;
  • Originated in the Republic of Serbia;
  • If a temporary residence permit is required for humanitarian reasons or for the benefit of the Republic of Serbia.

A foreigner’s application for permanent residence in the Republic of Serbia shall be decided by the Ministry of the Interior within 60 days from the date of application, and the permanent residence permit shall be placed in the foreigner’s passport in the form of a sticker. In addition, according to the right of permanent residence, foreigners have the right to obtain a foreigner’s ID card.

Is the procedure for obtaining a residence permit complicated?

If you are applying for a residence permit for a maximum of 90 days, a temporary or permanent residence permit, or if you are applying for a visa, you must be very patient. The information provided in this article is for reference only, so it is necessary to determine in each case whether the conditions for the approval of the residence permit or visa are met, and the timetable that should be determined at the time of application.

Moreover, the speed of the application process depends on each specific case, the documents that must be submitted, and the person who decides to apply.

In order for you to simplify the whole process as much as possible, complete it as soon as possible and ensure that all necessary documents are collected and submitted before the deadline, it is recommended that you contact a lawyer to obtain accurate and complete information. Instructions before performing any such operations.

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