I am married to Bulgarian woman/man or I am planning to get married soon. What are my options in order to obtain residence permit in Bulgaria?

Is our marriage legal if concluded outside of Bulgaria? What is the procedure for obtaining legal residence and is my residence permit guaranteed as a spouse of Bulgarian citizen?

The marriage is usually one of the happiest moments in life. It is often associated with love, honeymoon, travel around the world, exotic places and romantic resorts, just to name a few. When your spouse is citizen of another country though, there are often some formalities that need to be followed. And if you have chosen your future country of residence to be Bulgaria, you should carefully take into account the following particularities:

EU citizen marrying Bulgarian national

If you are citizen of an EU country and you have married Bulgarian national, the procedure is quite straightforward and simple. We will therefore not waste our readers’ time to explain the administrative formalities. A worth mentioning is the situation of British nationals married to Bulgarian citizens after (and if) the Brexit becomes reality. We will dedicate additional article about this phenomenon, its legal consequences and the administrative hurdles that will need to be addressed.

Non-EU citizens to marry Bulgarian

The much more complicated scenario is when the marriage is between a Bulgarian national and a citizen of non-EU country. There are more and more marriages between Bulgarians and nationals of USA, Canada, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Afghanistan, Jordan, Syria, Libya, South Africa, Russia, Ukraine, China, Malaysia, Turkey, etc. When the couple has decided to live in Bulgaria, the non-Bulgarian partner has to go through the process of, first, obtaining his Bulgarian immigration visa type “D” and then applying for his annual residence permit. It is often the case, when the residence in Bulgaria is chosen not only because of the country’s beautiful countryside and golden beaches, but also because of the fact that certain term of legal residence in Bulgaria provides the opportunity to apply for full citizenship and Bulgarian (EU) passport. This allows visa free travel to most countries worldwide alongside with free movement and working within the European Union.

The Bulgarian law

According Art.15 of the “Law for the Foreigners of Republic of Bulgaria”, a long term visa with a validity of up to 6 months and allowed stay of up to 180 days can be granted to foreigners who intend to stay long term or permanently in Bulgaria. This visa is to be applied for and received from the Bulgarian Embassy in the country of residence of the foreigner. This process, although quite bureaucratic, is only the first hurdle into achieving the final goal – the EU residency. You will be required to present “certificate for good conduct”, official marriage certificate, legalized as appropriate as well as other documents and declarations. We always recommend using legal support at this stage as failure to meet the requirements of the Bulgarian diplomatic mission in your country of residence may result in very serious consequences, preventing you to obtain legal residence. This visa is to be received from the Bulgarian embassy in your country of residence.

The second step

The second step is applying and receiving the residence permit itself from the Bulgarian immigration authorities. According to Art.24, par.1, p.18 of the “Law for the Foreigners of Republic of Bulgaria”, a permit for long term residence can be obtained by foreigners, holders of visa (as explained above) who are family members of Bulgarian citizen as per Art.2, par.6. It is worth mentioning that as “family members” are considered the spouses who are living together in one household. In other words, if you don’t intend to live together with your spouse in Bulgaria, you are not eligible for residence permit. You will have to present a lot of paperwork, such as, your marriage certificate, police record for lack of criminal convictions, declarations, etc. The most important part of the process is that the immigration authorities, together with the police and the “State Agency for National Security” will carry out a thorough check (including an interview with the spouses) in order to verify that:

1) You do not present any thread to the national security. You have to understand, that bearing in mind the current situation in EU (and elsewhere), these checks will be done with utmost scrutiny and there will be a policy of zero tolerance. Even minor convictions or “irregularities” in the past history of the applicant, or any documentary discrepancies, will be deemed as serious breach and the application can be refused.

2) That the marriage is real and is not made with the sole purpose to provide the possibility to the foreigner to obtain residence permit. Art.26, par.3 from the “Law for the Foreigners of Republic of Bulgaria” clearly stipulates this. Moreover in the same Article, par.4, p.1 states that the spouses must be living together and if not, the residence permit can be refused. There are also many other reasons when the permission for residency will not be granted or can be even withdrawn. Please be advised that the spouses will be simultaneously interviewed and their statements compared. Even the slightest doubt of the immigration officer about their honesty can result in immediate refusal and consequential deportation. Therefore we strongly advise all of you, who are facing application for legal residency trough marriage, to consult immigration lawyer before applying yourself.

Attention! Fake marriages!

The statistics show that in recent years, especially after Bulgaria joined the EU and its citizens enjoy the visa free travel as EU members, the amount of fake marriages has skyrocketed. Please be advised, that unless you can prove your marriage to be legitimate, you are not only risking refusal and deportation, but are also subject to criminal convictions, including jail terms. We urge you to employ a licensed Bulgarian lawyer in order to prevent any such possibilities!

103 Comments

  1. Hello,

    Is it possible to obtain a 5 year long term residency if my wife is bulgarian and i am non EU citizen ? Thank you .

    1. Author

      Hello Max,
      It is possible, yes. You will have to renew your residency card though.
      For further assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. Hello i m from non eu country and my husband is bulgarian citizen .we got married now going to one year and we have one kids how can i apply bulgarian citizens ? thank you .

        1. Author

          Hello,
          Obtaining Bulgarian citizenship through marriage is a comprehensive and time consuming process. We recommend you reading more about Bulgarian citizenship.
          Your first step will be however to apply for visa D and later to obtain Bulgarian residency permit. Please note that the rate of rejection is very high lately, due to high amount of fake marriages.
          If you want your application to be 100% legally compliant and your chances of approval maximized, we urge you to contact us for assistance.
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

      2. Am about to married Bulgaria woman in Nigeria how long is going to take for us to get honeymoon visa

        1. Author

          Hello,
          You are asking the wrong question. The right one should be “what are my chances to get immigration visa as spouse of Bulgarian citizen?”.
          First of all, there is no such thing as “honeymoon visa”. Such exists in the USA for example, the so called “fiance visa”. In the USA, there is then another visa issued after the legal marriage is concluded and legalised. In Bulgaria you only have immigration visa type D (AKA visa under article 15).
          Now about your chances of getting it. While we are not aware of your personal circumstances, from what you are writing, the situation doesn’t look rosy. Marriage in Nigeria will be considered in Bulgaria as highly likely to be a sham marriage. If you are seriously determined to obtain Bulgarian visa and residence permit, provided that your marriage is legit, we would advise you to contact our offices for further assistance from the very beginning.
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

    2. Hello ,,
      Im married to bulgarian citizen 2 years ago and have 1 baby and have another on the way. We live in lebanon at this time and we are willing to move to bulgaria as soon as i get the visa from the embassy. How much time it will take me to get the permanent residence.

      Thank you

      1. Author

        Hello,
        It all depends on whether you have already obtained long-term residency or not. If you have, you may be eligible for permanent residency as soon as after 3 years. This is subject to the fact that you have a baby (presumably Bulgarian citizen). And of course, you must have lived in Bulgaria for certain time. All in all, this is complicated matter and we recommend you contacting our offices for further information.
        Regards,
        Posolstvo.eu

  2. Taking residence permit is a long process, and you have to renew it yearly, and its take up to three weeks for renew !

  3. good day my name is Amos olashile oluwaseun I have a fiance in Bulgaria she want to send me invitation letter to come and meet her in Bulgaria and as we all know invitation letter is valid for 90 days my question is this will it possible for us to get married during the 90days and obtain the long term residency / stay to be living with her as a family please I need your advice

    1. Author

      Hello,
      90 days are more than enough to get married in Bulgaria with your fiance. It is important however to bring with you all the necessary documents, such as certificate that you are not married elsewhere, etc. Please also note that under normal circumstances, you will need to travel back to your home country (after getting married) in order to obtain visa D.
      For any further information you might need, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. I and my wife to be met online and has been communicating for over a year. Technology has really helped us so much as we spend hours on video chat everyday. We know each other family very well but has not yet met in person. My visa was denied last year , an opportunity to meet her in person and her family, she was adviced that we should get married and we decided to get married. My question is, given that we have not met in person, will it be a problem in denying me visa? We have registered at the marriage registry and she has an interview with the immigration.

        1. Author

          Hello,
          We assume that you didn’t get married yet, right? And you haven’t met in person yet, right?
          Where, at what marriage agency have you registered in that case? And what is your future wife doing at the immigration at this point?
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

      2. hello
        i just want to know without marriage how i can take marriage certificate ?

        1. Author

          Hello,
          Without marriage you can even make children, but unfortunately you can not get marriage certificate. 🙂 Good luck and please, STAY LEGAL!

      3. Hello i m Indian citesensship and i m planing to merrid with my fiance in Bulgaria ,but after that she will settle in Canada ,m i alow with that merrige certificate to trawel with her in Canada if i don’t have a resident over there?

        1. Author

          Hello,
          In Canada you will enjoy different advantages as a spouse of EU citizen. However, you may need to apply for and obtain Bulgarian residency permit first, in order to take advantage of these. The Bulgarian long-term residency permit is in plastic credit card format as the majority of all EU national identity card. The residency permit will prove to the Canadian authorities that your marriage is legitimate and it is registered in Bulgaria. Bulgarian nationals can travel of course visa-free to Canada.
          For any additional questions, please call our offices.
          Posolstvo.eu

  4. Hello,
    I wanted to ask how much time does it take to obtain the 5 year visa for me as a non-EU citizen after I marry my bulgarian girlfriend?
    Thank you!
    Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

    1. Author

      Hello,
      There is no such as 5-year visa. You are maybe referring to “permanent residency” status. Such will be obtained after 5 years of marriage or in case you have a child, this period may be shortened to 3 years. Please note also that there are also certain other conditions that need to be met in order to obtain permanent residency.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. Thank you for your answer!
        So the permanent residency is obtained after 3-5 years, but till then am I supposed to renew my Visa D every 6-12 months?
        Me and my girlfriend want to live and work in London together so can I renew my permit from there without coming to Bulgaria? (Please exclude the Brexit rules at the moment in your answer)

        1. Author

          Your visa D will be cancelled once you get your your first residency permit (in form of credit card photo ID). You will indeed need to renew this permit every 6-12 months.
          You can not renew it from London without some special arrangements.
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

  5. Hi sir I’m non eu and my wife from Bulgaria we married in uk last 2 and half year
    Now we want to go in Bulgaria is there I need again take five year or same visa change in Bulgarian visa system

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Your question is not very clear. Have you already applied for Bulgarian visa type D?
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. I am non eu and legally married with bulgarian a year ago. I am a D visa holder, what if within 5 years resident permit my husband dies. Process of citizens automaticlly closed or not.

        1. Author

          Your question sounds creepy to be honest. In case the worst happens, your residence rights will be cancelled.

          P.S. To all unmarried (Bulgarian) guys around – please guys, please think twice before taking one of the most important steps in your life. Think twice, not to make this be your last step in life LOL. The Bulgarian law luckily protects you during the first 5 years – after that, stay married on your own risk!

          1. sorry if my question was wrong and too frankly bothered you. anything can happen that we have to accept even the worst. Btw my ID card has not been issued because of a difference in name, the marriage certificate includes the husband’s surname and on the passport without a family name. it is not easy in my country to change the name on the passport. is it possible to change the name on the marriage certificate

          2. Author

            Hello,
            If you want, please contact our offices for further assistance as the matter is obviously complicated.
            Regards,
            Posolstvo.eu

  6. Hello,
    I am looking for some advice and I hope I have come to the right place.
    I am a non-EU citizen and my boyfriend is a Bulgarian resident. We have been together for 18 months now – both making the (lonnng) trip to and from Australia during that time. We intend to marry and I have decided to make the move and make Bulgaria my home, however, I am unsure if the marriage alone would allow me to remain there.
    Do I need a separate visa prior to/during this period?
    I am not seeking permanent residency as such, just at least 1-2 years with my love before we intend to return to Australia.

    Any information you can provide would be much appreciated.
    Thank you.

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Marriage with legal resident of Bulgaria is ground for obtaining residency permit for yourself. You will need separate visa type D and there are number of other formalities that will need to be observed as well.
      If you need any further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. I am non EU and i’m married to Bulgarian permanent resident holder for 7 years and we have daghter 6 years, she recently applied for citizenship. I am interested to know ,when she take bulgarian citzenship ,can i take permanent resident since we were married more then 5 years??

  7. Dear sir or madam

    I am karunarathna from Sri Lankan I am now working Cyprus i have marry with Bulgaria wife I like to know after 3 years I can apply Bulgarian citizenship or I have to live in bulgaria 3 years please let me know because I have to plan my life next 3 years thank you so much

    Best regards
    Karunarathna

    1. Author

      Hello Karunarathna,
      Marriage by itself will not lead automatically to Bulgarian citizenship. You have to first apply for long-term residency. After that there are other requirements that need to be met too. If you are serious about following all legal procedures and obtain Bulgarian citizenship, please contact our lawyers accordingly.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  8. I am harpreet from India but I came in Hungary as a work permit now I have Hungary Visa and I married with Bulgaria girl ..can u tell me how many years I will get Visa after marry ..I want to apply Visa in Germany

    1. Author

      Hello,
      If you are married to Bulgarian citizen, you are entitled to immediately apply for visa D. Consequently you can obtain Bulgarian long-term residency permit. Once you are legal resident in Bulgaria, you can arrange your residency rights in Germany accordingly.
      If you need any assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. I am non EU and i’m married to Bulgarian permanent resident holder for 7 years and we have daghter 6 years, she recently applied for citizenship. I am interested to know ,when she take bulgarian citzenship ,can i take permanent resident since we were married more then 5 years??

        1. Author

          Hello,
          This is very interesting question.
          Our opinion is that you should be eligible for permanent residency after your souse becomes Bulgarian citizen, subject to the other legal conditions of the law being met. Please note that the conditions do not differ much between marriage with Bulgarian citizen and with foreigner with permanent residency.
          Our feeling is however that the immigration authorities may deny your permanent residency application, so your only option may be to appeal in Court.
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

  9. Hello Sir,
    I am Haque. I am from Bangladesh. I got married a Bulgarian woman in cyprus on 2017. Now i am living in germany with her. I was make my marriage registration on Bulgaria on 2017. But i need passport or id card from Bulgaria so what i have to do now? I have to stay in bulgaria or i can apply from here? Please if you answer me i will be happy.

    1. Author

      Hello,
      You have to apply for visa D from our embassy in Germany first. Once received, you will need to travel to Bulgaria and obtain residency permit, which will allow you to travel and work in Bulgaria without any restrictions. Please note that the procedure is quite comprehensive and you should proceed with extreme legal compliance in mind. Please also read our other relevant article. Also be advised that Cyprus is known as hub for “marriages” and this may raise a red flag when applying for residence permit in Bulgaria.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  10. Hi Sir,
    Thanks For reply. And sorry for disturb you again. I have Germany visa until 2022 with that visa i can move any EU country. So why should i have to take again D visa for Bulgaria? And if i don’t need and i go Bulgaria i can apply for ID-Card? And where i have to go and apply for ID-Card? please let me know. Thanks for your Support. Hope get reply soon. Thanks again for your support.

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Although you have valid German visa, you still need to obtain Bulgarian immigration visa D. Even if you were from a country, with which Bulgaria has visa-free regime (ie Canada), you would still need visa D. This is the law (art.24 and art.15 from the Law for the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria), although it may sound strange to you. If you go to Bulgaria without visa D, you can not apply for ID card.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      P.S. Please be sure to proceed with extreme legal compliance in mind, as marriages that are concluded in Cyprus are often being viewed as to hold higher risk for the system. Please read (in Bulgarian) https://posolstvo.eu/bg/blog/trafik-na-hora-s-cel-brak/

  11. My question is, icame aclose a certain lady from Bulgaria and she loved me very much, am non European citizen, she needs to invite me to her country, is it possible to get residency in Bulgaria if she marries me,

    1. Author

      Hello Allan,
      Yes, it will be possible. Please be prepared that the process may be not as straightforward and easy as you may be hoping for. If you need assistance, please let us know.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  12. Hello,
    I’m a Non-EU Citizien and i’m living in Bulgaria at least 2 year and a half. I had residence permit untill february 2020 with ground of business.
    I would like to ask , if i get married now with Bulgarian girl for how long i can get the Residence permit again?
    6-12 months the same or it can be more longer?
    Thank you in advance!

    1. Author

      If you marry Bulgarian citizen now and want to apply for new residency permit, you will need to re-apply for visa D and re-enter Bulgaria. Your residency permit will be then issued for the same 6-12 months period.

  13. Hello
    I’m a Non-EU Citizen and i’m living in ITALY and i have ASYLUM valid cad valid for 6 math and proof of adress i married with EU NATIONAL who is form ROMANEA and then i legalised my marriage form Bulgaria conciliate and they stamp on it after i pay there fee
    know she move form Romania to Bulgaria and
    she is working there and she have proper home for two person and she have Bulgaria ID CARD as EVERY EU National can get long term
    know she want me to join her in
    Bulgaria FOR D VISA i am trying to get appointment
    form Bulgaria Embassy in Milan and i have send 4 mail to them and they confirmed but they are not give me D VISA appointment so know i am planing to come with my EU NATIONAL WIFE ALONG WITH ALL
    LAGAL PAPER LIKE CERTIFIED Marriage CERTIFICATE , HOUSE ACCOMMODATION LATTER,
    FINANCIAL SPONSOR SHIP LATER , AND she bring her Bulgaria id card which EU CARD AND all paper is translated and NOTARIZE
    PLEAE ADVISED ME BY LAW I READ SOME WERE I CAN TRAV IN EU STAE TO AN OTHER EU STAE ALONG WITH MY EU SPOUSE AND SHOWNG MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE TO BODER POLICE ITS ALOW OR NOT WHAT IS YOUR OPINION ABOUT THAT

    FOR D VISA I WILL DISCUSS AFTER YOUR REPLY

    THANKS

    1. Author

      We strongly advise you to immediately apply for and obtain visa D and then Bulgarian long term residency permit.
      The EU directives are complicated legal matter and their implementation is often left to the national authorities. The border authorities are trained to recognize wide range of ID travel documents, such as ID cards and international passports. They are even able to recognize other documents, in some cases. It will be difficult however to imagine the border officer to be able to recognize all EU member states marriage certificates, especially bearing in mind they do not have unified format (as ID cards, passports or driving licenses have). Or even worse, house accommodation letters, etc.

  14. Thanks
    for your reply, however the border force is capable to verify those documents what you advised in earlier reply of our marriage, passport ID and all other documents are genuine I’m not scared to face them I just want to know in Europe and ( Bulgaria )
    as I red travelling with EU spouse non EU partner
    can travel for limited time to other European state for less then 90 days can you pleas confirm this information what I get because I consider your advice. Because your company have very good solicitor.
    As before you strongly recommend me apply for D visa. In your experience how long that will take to answer and about their appointment as I have explained you Bulgarian embassy in Milan they are not replying me for D visa appointment so is there any other way to get an appointment if you know please let me know.

    THANKS

    1. Author

      We stand by our advice, which is to arrange your visa D and residency permit asap. If you want us to assist you for that, please contact our offices at your earliest convenience.
      As to your other concerns, we recommend you reading our article (in Bulgarian) – https://posolstvo.eu/bg/blog/zaqvlenie-v-migraciq/

  15. My wife and daughter are Bulgarian, we had registered our marriage in Bulgaria many years ago around 15 or 16 years, we are married in Greece, i am a Greek citizen, how can i get a Bulgarian id, i come only for a vacation, but i think to move there we have a house, i wrote everything to my family, i have only the marriage as a proof even the bank refuse me to open an account,,, how you tell me what is going on, thanks

    1. Author

      Hello,
      You don’t have to feel discriminated, because the banks in Bulgaria don’t open you a bank account. You are not the only one who has been refused. We are warning our customers since very long time about this problem and that without professional assistance, the bank account opening is almost impossible. Please read more at http://www.euroformat.eu/open-bank-account.
      As to your other issue, we recommend you to contact us asap in order to obtain Bulgarian ID. We will either provide you with comprehensive instructions on how to do it yourself or, if you find the hassle just too much, will arrange the whole process ourselves.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  16. Thanks for your quick reply , I will keep that in mind when I will make a decision, thanks again

  17. Hello, am new here..I want your advice. Covid-19 pandemic messed our marriage plans in Germany, it takes 6 months there and we dont want to wait this longer time again. I am non-EU, I want me and my German fiancée to get married in Bulgaria when the borders (EU to EU) and (EU to the outside world) are open. Is this possible? If yes, how can I be able to make this easy and faster? What documents and Visa is needed.? Thanks in advance for your help..

    1. Author

      Hello,
      In order to get married in Bulgaria, you will need to have an official residential address in the country. Without an address, your marriage can not be registered.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  18. Hi, I am Bulgarian citizen and my fiance is Indian. We live in Germany and planning to marry in Germany. How and where can we marry in Germany?
    Thank you in advance

    1. Author

      Hello,
      You can best marry in the Bulgarian embassy in Germany if you plan to obtain Bulgarian residency permit for your husband later. We recommend you reading our article about the story of our customer in similar situation as yours (https://posolstvo.eu/blog/visa-d-rejection/).
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  19. If we marry in Bulgarian Embassy, is he allowed to stay in Germany?

    1. Author

      You will have to apply for residency permit in Germany, based on your marriage. He will be not automatically allowed to reside or even enter Germany. If you need our assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards, Posolstvo.eu

  20. HELLO
    i married with Romanian girl in Pakistan after that i legalise my marriage with Bulgaria Embasse in Pakistan also MOF attest and register there
    know i call in Bulgaria Embasse for D VISA appointment they ask me be four i come i have to register my marriage in Bulgaria .
    my question is were my wife in which office she can register this marriage please let me know
    THANKS

  21. Author

    Hello,
    You have to register your marriage in Bulgaria, not in the embassy. If you are currently outside of Bulgaria, please make sure to consult the current covid travel restrictions.
    If you need assistance, please contact us for support.
    Regards,
    Posolstvo.eu

  22. THANKS
    for your reply i’m in ITALY but my wife she is in Bulgaria and i want to know where she go in which
    office , local counsel or were because my marriage is
    already done in and legalise so in Bulgaria in which
    local office she can register

    THANKS

    1. Author

      If your wife is in Bulgaria, please ask her to call us so we can explain her what the options are.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  23. Author

    All our contact details are listed in the contact section of our website at https://posolstvo.eu/contact/
    But if your wife “cant speak our language”, then there is something very wrong with it.

  24. Hello! I was married with a Bulgarian citizen for about 3 years. Lately we were having a lot of scandals and we decide to divorce. In the mean while I met the love of my life (also a Bulgarian) and we would like to married. Will I manage to renew my resident permit after my second marriage or I suppose to apply for a new visa in my home country, or it’s okay with one what I have from my firsth marriage?
    Thank You!

    1. Author

      Hello Aleksandra,
      According to the Foreigners Law, marriage with Bulgarian citizen is legal ground to obtain visa D and long-term residency in Bulgaria. The regalement to the law foresees additional cumulative conditions. For example, the family needs to declare that the marriage is “real” (please check sham marriages in Bulgaria), that the foreigner will be financially supported and so forth. Eventual divorce will not only void the legal marriage, but it will also void all additional conditions. A new marriage will lack the properties of the first one, namely there will be no declarations that the marriage is “real”, no declarations for the financial support of the foreigner, etc.
      With all that being said, a divorce will automatically cancel the legal ground for your stay in Bulgaria. A consecutive marriage will not rectify this situation automatically. This means that you will need to re-apply for visa D and go through the process of obtaining long-term residency again, based on your new marriage.
      Its worth mentioning, that according to article 24, par.5 of the Bulgarian Foreigners Law, you may obtain a one time extension of your current residency permit after your divorce (even if you are not married yet). This will be only allowed if you and your (ex) husband have been living together in Bulgaria during the last 2 years without interruptions. Once this extension expires, you will need to either leave the country or apply again for visa D if you have legal grounds to stay in the country.
      If you need any additional assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  25. Hi, I am British national and got married to a Bulgarian woman in April. I have been working in Bulgaria for over a year now – we are living together (I got the long-term residency permit before our marriage), and we have been together for 10 years before getting married in April. Can I apply for the spouse visa or would I need to keep extending my long-term residency? (taking Brexit into consideration). Thanks.

    1. Author

      Hello Josh,
      The best you could do is to apply for spouse visa and residency permit asap.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  26. Good Day. My Fiance and I will be marrying in the next 6 months. He is Bulgarian and I am South African. We will be moving to Bulgaria in the next 6-8 months, as we are clearing our home and selling assets in the meantime. My question is, I am full time employed and my daughter and granddaughter is currently living with me (I am their primary caregiver). We will all be moving to Bulgaria as a family and live with his family. Can I bring my daughter and granddaughter as part of our family with us?

    1. Author

      Hello Ina,
      After you marry with your fiance, you will be eligible to obtain visa D and long-term residency permit. Your eligibility comes from Art.24, par.1, p.18 from the Bulgarian law on the foreigners. The said article stipulates that “family members of Bulgarian citizen” can obtain long-term residency permit, subject to some conditions being met. Please note however that the Bulgarian immigration authorities are rejecting similar applications massively, so you better prepare everything in advance with extreme care.
      The term “family members of Bulgarian citizen” is explained in Art.2, par.6 of the foreigners law. These are namely the spouse (you fit into this category), all descending of both the foreigner and the spouse (foreigner) who are younger than 21 as well as those who are older than 21, but can not support themselves financially or have serious medical condition, requiring the Bulgarian citizen to personally take care of them. As family members are also considered the parents of the spouses as well as other family members who are entirely supported by the family.
      Given all that, it will be theoretically possible to include your daughter/granddaughter with your application and to obtain for them residency permit. Knowing how the immigration authorities handle similar cases however, we think that such an application will be most probably rejected (unless done extremely well), so you will be left with the only option to appeal in court and prove your point there. The court appeal unfortunately is both expensive and time consuming. You can read about some of our similar court cases on https://blog.bglaw.eu/.
      If you need any further assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  27. Hi Alex, thank you for your reply. My daughter is older than 21 but both mentally and physically handicapped and is receiving a monthly disability grant from the SA Goverment as her only income. She is not working.

  28. Hi,

    I am a British citizen married to a Bulgarian for 7 years and have a child also. We live in UK but currently on holiday in Bulgaria. What can we do right now ahead of Brexit in December as I would like long term/permanent residence here with eventually Bulgarian citizenship if possible and not be restricted by immigration rules as we may want to live here long term.

    Thanks

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Our recommendation is to immediately take all necessary steps and to obtain Bulgarian residency permit. You will be now eligible for long-term residency only, but subject to some conditions being met, after a period of 3 to 5 years, you may become eligible for permanent residency. Later, you may also apply for Bulgarian citizenship. The matter is rather complicated, due to the Brexit though.
      If you need any additional information, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  29. Good-day,

    I would like to get some assistance regarding the following, I’m a South African citizen married to a Bulgaria Citizen in a same sex marriage conducted in South Africa. We have been married for close to 13 years now and together for almost 23 years. We have decided about a year ago we want to move to my husbands home country Bulgaria so we started the process of applying for my D Visa, the application with all required documentation requested by the consular of the Bulgarian Embassy where submitted on the 10th of July 2020, the Consular at the Bulgarian Embassy informed us that we need to contact and enquirer with the municipality in Bulgaria where my husband is registered to register our marriage which we did, they told us that we cannot register the marriage as we were not married in a EU country and that we also can’t register same sex marriage in Bulgaria as Bulgaria does not recognize any type of same-sex unions, the visa process is now pending due to the marriage that are conducted in SA and not Europe.

    My question is can the Bulgarian Foreign Affaires refuse my Visa and Residency Rights in Bulgaria due to fact that our marriage was not conducted in Europe. Our marriage is valid in SA, do we need to re-married in EU.

    The below info was takes from one of the multiple websites investigated by me and I cannot find any were something saying we have to be married in EU. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recognition_of_same-sex_unions_in_Bulgaria

    On June 5, 2018, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that European Union member states (including Bulgaria) must recognise the freedom of movement and residency rights of same-sex spouses, provided one partner is an EU citizen.[10][11][12] The Court ruled that EU member states may choose whether or not to allow same-sex marriage, but they cannot obstruct the freedom of residence of an EU citizen and their spouse. Furthermore, the Court ruled that the term “spouse” is gender-neutral, and that it does not necessarily imply a person of the opposite sex.[13][14]
    Citing the ruling, a Sofia court granted a same-sex couple the right to live in Bulgaria on 29 June 2018. The couple, an Australian woman and her French spouse, had married in France in 2016, but were denied residency in Bulgaria a year later when they attempted to renew their residency status, which had been previously granted under the EU mobility directive.[15] In January 2019, Bulgarian immigration officials appealed the decision.[16] However, on 25 July 2019, the Supreme Administrative Court of Bulgaria upheld the lower court ruling.[17][18] The couple’s lawyer, Denitsa Lyubenova, said the move could be an important first step toward the legalization of same-sex marriage in Bulgaria.[19]

    1. Author

      Hello,
      The short answer to your question:

      can the Bulgarian Foreign Affaires refuse my Visa and Residency Rights in Bulgaria due to fact that our marriage was not conducted in Europe. Our marriage is valid in SA, do we need to re-married in EU.

      is sound and clear: YES, the immigration authorities may, and will most probably refuse your visa application
      Their legal ground (not that they really need one) will be Art.24, par.1, p.18 from the Bulgarian Law on the foreigners, which stipulates that:

      “….residency permit… (in your case initially visa D) can obtain foreigners who are members of the family of a Bulgarian citizen and the documents originating from abroad, which certify the family relations and the right of support, are recognized and registered or admitted for execution by the order of the Bulgarian legislation;”

      Art.46, par.1 from the Bulgarian Constitution stipulates that:

      Marriage is a voluntary union between a man and a woman. Only civil marriage is legal.

      The court decisions you are quoting are indeed saying otherwise, but they have been taken after comprehensive legal proceedings, which do not apply in your case YET.

      Please beware that the immigration authorities are rejecting enormous percentage of visa D applications for unpredictable and illogical reasons. You can read more about some of our court cases.
      If you need further assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  30. My friend married a Bulgarian girl and now he has obtained a permanent residence for 5 years. If he divorces his wife, does the permanent residence remain with him? Can it be renewed after its expiry? And after that the submission of Bulgarian citizenship?

    1. Author

      Hello,
      It really depends on how your friend has obtained his residency permit. If it is indeed a 5 year residency permit, and not a long term permit, is he a non-EU citizen? Also, when did he marry his wife and do they have children?
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. My friend married a Bulgarian girl and now he has obtained a permanent residence for 5 years. If he divorces his wife, does the permanent residence remain with him? Can it be renewed after its expiry? And after that the submission of Bulgarian citizenship?

        -he is NOT from EU ( he is from Tunis )

        – he got 5 year residency permit now in Bulgaria because he married with Bulgarian girl 5 years and she brought him from Tunis to Bulgaria .

        – he DOENS’T have children

        1. Author

          Hello,
          It is not possible for your friend to have obtained 5 year permanent residency permit under these circumstances. Or maybe we don’t quite understand what you are trying to explain. Did your friend live in Bulgaria for 5 years already?
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

          1. My friend married a Bulgarian girl and now he has obtained a permanent residence for 5 years. If he divorces his wife, does the permanent residence remain with him? Can it be renewed after its expiry? And after that the submission of Bulgarian citizenship?

            -he is NOT from EU ( he is from Tunis )

            – he got 5 year residency permit now in Bulgaria because he married with Bulgarian girl 5 years and she brought him from Tunis to Bulgaria .

            – he DOENS’T have children

            – Yes, my friend lived in Bulgaria for five years as a result of this marriage (and the Bulgarian state renewed his residency annually for him because of marriage, and now after five years have passed since the marriage, it is clear that he can apply for permanent residence (five years) .. My question is after obtaining this residence for a period of five For years, if he divorces his wife, will the residence permit remain with him ?? Can he renew it? And can he then apply for Bulgarian citizenship?

          2. Author

            In such case, his permanent residency may be only cancelled if the divorce takes place earlier than 5 years after the marriage. Obviously not your friend’s case.
            As for obtaining citizenship, please visit http://bulgarian-citizenship.org/ for more information or contact our offices.
            Regards,
            Posolstvo.eu

  31. My friend married a Bulgarian girl and now he has obtained a permanent residence for 5 years.

    -he is NOT from EU ( he is from Tunis )

    – he got 5 year residency permit now in Bulgaria because he married with Bulgarian girl 5 years and she brought him from Tunis to Bulgaria .

    – he DOENS’T have children

    – Yes, my friend lived in Bulgaria for five years as a result of this marriage (and the Bulgarian state renewed his residency annually for him because of marriage, and now after five years have passed since the marriage, it is clear that he can apply for permanent residence (five years) ..

    —My question is can he renew the residency after it expired after 5 years when he already divorce his wife after 5 years married is bulgaria ?

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Your question:

      My question is can he renew the residency after it expired after 5 years when he already divorce his wife after 5 years married is bulgaria ?

      is very unclear. In order to avoid any misunderstandings, we would kindly ask you to contact our offices for further assistance.
      Thanks and best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  32. Hello,

    Can i present my Bulgarian employment letter or pay slip as evidence of proof of income or do i need a bank statement showing money in my account

    1. Author

      Eventually you can, subject to some conditions being met. However, if you are applying for visa D or residency permit through marriage with Bulgarian citizen, how is it possible that you have received salary in Bulgaria prior to your application?
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  33. Good Afternoon. I am a British citizen married to a Bulgarian. This year I received a Bulgarian residence permit valid for 5 years. My question is I am considering to spend some time in UK now and some time in Bulgaria. Is there a minimum period I need to stay in Bulgaria for this residence permit to be valid as am concerned if i dont spend enough time in Bulgaria this card will become invalid?
    In type of permit it says Article 50 TEU and in Remarks it says Article 18(4) of the Agreement. What does this mean and do I need to do anything after Brexit to renew this again?
    Regards

    1. Author

      Hello,
      In order to assist you we need to see your current residence card. Please call our offices to arrange an appointment if you want.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  34. Good afternoon.

    I am a non-EU citizen and I am in a long-term relationship with a Bulgarian citizen. Since she is living and working in Bulgaria we were planning to get married so I can move there with her.

    Would it be easier if we marry in my home country or in Bulgaria? Also, after getting married and obtaining the D-type visa, when can I apply for my 6-12month residence card; immediately after I go to Bulgaria?

    After receiving the first residence card, are there any requirements I need to fulfill to renew the second one? (like spend a specific amount of days in BG territory) Also, with the first residence permit, is it possible for me to get a work permit without finding a job first?

    Thank you very much for your time!

    Regards,
    John

    1. Author

      Hello John,
      The best is to marry in Bulgaria, however not absolutely necessary.
      After you obtain visa D, you should travel to Bulgaria and apply asap for residence permit. Don’t expect though that obtaining visa D will be a straightforward process.
      There are some requirements in order to maintain your residence card. Please call our offices for details if you want as these are quite complicated.
      Once you get your residence card, based on the marriage with Bulgarian citizen, you will not need work permit at all.
      Best regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  35. Hello sir
    I’m citizen of non eu County I’m going to get marriage with Bulgarian woman she’s in bulgaria and she applied for me visa from bulgaria that Visa will be which typ E-visa or I need to go bulgaria emmbesy? Thank you

    1. Author

      Hello,
      It is not possible that your future wife has already applied for visa for you. This can be only done after you are legally married and the visa type will be visa D. You will need to apply for it at the Bulgarian embassy.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  36. Good Day,

    I am a South African who has been in a common law marriage with a Bulgarian women for about 20 years. We have 3 children together, 17, 15 and 3 years old. If our family wanted to move to and live in Bulgaria, would our common law marriage be recognized by Bulgarian Immigration?

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Your common law marriage will be not recognized in Bulgaria. If your children however are Bulgarian citizens, you will be still able to apply for residence permit. If they are not, we would suggest you to immediately take all necessary steps to get them Bulgarian citizenship.
      If you need any assistance, please contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  37. Hi Alex,
    Thank you for your reply, I really appreciate your help.
    The children are not Bulgarian Citizens. We are trying to arrange for my common law wife to travel back to Bulgaria as soon as possible as she needs to sort her own situation out (she has taken South African citizenship many years ago but we are currently living in Canada, for the last 5 years and her Bulgarian passport expired during this time). When she returns to Bulgaria to sort her own documents we intend on also making applications for the children.

    1. Author

      Great Neil,
      If you or your wife needs assistance, please let us know.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

  38. Hello,
    I have a following question. My boyfriend is with double citizenship – Ecuadorian and American, but currently live in Croatia (EU country). He is with a short-term permit there. We plan to get married in Bulgaria soon (I’m Bulgarian). My question is can we apply for visa D right after the marriage and how long it will take for him to get the visa? Can we work with visa D legally in the EU and one last question – can he apply for visa D in the Bulgarian consulate in Croatia, or it should be somewhere else?

    1. Author

      Hello,

      You can apply for visa D after your marriage. Depending on your knowledge of how to prepare and submit the documents, the visa D may be issued in 1 to 6 months time.

      Please be advised that the percentage of rejections is very high, so proceed with utmost attention and legal compliance in mind. Pay special attention to the fact that your boyfriend has double citizenship. Depending on which citizenship has been first obtained, there may be certain complications.

      Please also note that after the issuance of visa D, it will need to be transformed to residence permit in Bulgaria. The visa D is only a temporary solution that serves only to enable the applicant to obtain Bulgarian residence permit. Obviously your future husband can not work legally with visa D in the EU.

      The visa D can be applied for in the consulate in Croatia, but only after special permission by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bulgaria.

      If you need any assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. Thank you lot, I appreciate your replay. Just a few more follow up questions. How long then he will be able to get that residence permit – i.e. how long after he get visa D and apply for the residence permit he is eligible to be working in EU? I just need to get some idea. Also, about the special permission from the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs in Bulgaria? How we can get this permission? And can we use your services for this matter and how much is your tax? You can replay this on my email in case can’t be published here. Thanks in advance!

  39. I have bulgarian passport and my girlfriend is Non EU citizen. I am living in Denmark and she is with me now. We want to get married. Is it possible to get married in Bulgarian embassy if not can we do that in Bulgaria ? Thanks

    1. Author

      Hello,
      You can get married in both the Embassy and in Bulgaria. If you need assistance, please let us know.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

      1. So i need to contact Bulgarian embassy ? What documents we need ?

        1. Author

          Yes, you can contact our embassy for further assistance. If you need legal support during your application, you can also call our offices.
          Regards,
          Posolstvo.eu

  40. Hi am Krish. My native is Sri Lanka. But am in Germany now with refuge visa.
    (3/6 months visa)
    I have a Bulgarian girl friend and she also live in Germany now. We like to get marry.
    Is it possible?
    If I marry her, what type of visa will I get?
    when I will get a valid Bulgarian ID and PR?

    1. Author

      Hello,
      Of course you can marry your Bulgarian girlfriend.
      You will be eligible for visa D, but the process of obtaining it is not without its thorns.
      If you need any legal assistance with the marriage procedure or with the immigration visa application, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards,
      Posolstvo.eu

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