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Residence Permit in Latvia
Since 1 July 2010 the amendments to the Immigration Law have entered into force. They allow investors to get residence permit in the Republic of Latvia, which is a Member-State of the European Union and Schengen Agreement.
Residence permit can be obtained in the following cases:
- Self-employment activity in Latvia.
- Employment in a Latvian company on the basis of a labor contract.
- Investment in the capital of a Latvian company in the amount of at least 50 000 Euro if such company has no more than 50 employees and its annual turnover does not exceed 10 000 000 Euro. The taxes paid by such company shall not be less than 10 000 Euro per year. If a Latvian company has more than 50 employees or its annual turnover exceeds 10 000 000 Euro, the amount of investment required to obtain the residence permit is not less than 100 000 Euro.*
- Establishment of a branch (representative office) of a foreign company.
- Subordinated liabilities with a Latvian bank in the amount of not less than 280 000 Euro and the term of the transaction entered into with such bank is not less than 5 years. Also there is a requirement to pay a fee in the amount of 25 000 Euro at the moment of obtaining of residence permit.*
- Purchase of immovable property of total value not less than 250 000 Euro (the cadastral value of it shall be at least 80 000 Euro), the payment of a fee in the amount of 5 % of such property’s total value is required.*
- Purchase of interest-free State securities dedicated to a specific purpose with the nominal value not less than 250 000 Euro, the additional fee of 38 000 Euro is to be paid to the budget.
- Other cases.
* If the term of such residence permit has expired, the applicant that requests its prolongation after 1 January 2018 shall pay a fee in the amount of 5 000 Euro. The payment of the fee can be made by several instalments, the first instalment shall be not less than 1 000 Euro.
Steps of residence permit processing:
- The customer gets the list of required documents.
- The customer submits the documents personally in consular section of Latvia in the country of the customer’s residence.
- In case of affirmative response, the customer is to visit the Department of Citizenship and Migration of Latvia to receive residence permit.
Advantages and specifics of residence permit:
- There are no limitations of minimum and maximum period of stay in Latvia (formerly it was necessary to stay in Latvia at least 6 months).
- In contrast to multi-entry visa, residence permit grants the right to stay in Latvia for more than 6 months a year.
- Persons with residence permit can freely visit other countries of the Schengen Agreement and stay there.
- Residence permit is temporary and is given for a period up to 5 years.
- Residence permit must be re-registered each year.
- The conditions because of which the residence permit was granted must be maintained each year.
- The customer’s spouse and children before lawful age are entitled to require residence permit during the period of validity of the customer’s residence permit.
Our company in association with our partners will help you to choose the proper way of investment and assist in completion of documents related to residence permit.
Denial of residence permit
The Department of Citizenship and Migration can deny residence permit without giving reason.
The inviter or foreigner who does not receive the invitation to get residence permit is entitled to challenge the decision on denial of granting or registration of residence permit or the decision on revocation of residence permit to the head of the Department of Citizenship and Migration within 30 days after such decision enters into force. The application should be filed only in state language. The mentioned persons can challenge the decision of the head of Department of Citizenship and Migration in court in the manner prescribed by law.
The documents requesting a temporary residence permit are considered within the time frame from 5 to 30 working days (depending on government fee).
The term of issuance of a temporary residence permit in Latvia is from 5 to 10 working days (depending on the amount of government fee).
Permanent residence permit in Latvia
The information above concerns a temporary residence permit issued for a period up to 5 years.
Permanent residence permit entitles a foreign citizen to live in Latvia permanently. Besides this, a person who got permanent residence permit is no more required to apply for a work permission (unlike a person who has a temporary residence permit). Such person can obtain employment in Latvia freely.
Continuous living in Latvia not less than 5 years by virtue of temporary residence permit is one of the key conditions for getting a permanent residence permit. The person in this case must not stay outside Latvia for more than 6 consecutive months, and the other periods of absence must not summarily exceed 1 year. Absence due to illness or force majeure circumstances may be an exception.
The second condition for getting a permanent residence permit – is an adequate level of Lettish language (А2). To get a certificate confirming knowledge of the state language the applicant should take a test and get the respective document.
Conditions for obtaining Latvian citizenship
After 5 years of permanent living in Latvia, the holders of permanent residence permit have an opportunity to apply for citizenship.
Citizenship of Latvia can be obtained through a naturalization procedure by persons who:
- achieved the age of 18 years;
- on the day of application have had a permanent place of residence in Latvia during minimum 5 last years (which may be interrupted for 1 year, that must not be the last year before application). For the citizens of other countries or stateless persons the 5-year period starts from the receipt of permanent residence permit;
- have a command of Lettish language, know the main provisions of the Constitution of the Latvian Republic, the text of the national anthem, the basics of history and culture of Latvia;
- have a legal source of income;
- have notified about renunciation of their previous citizenship and received a permit for expatriation in their former country of citizenship if such a procedure is required by the law of that state, or the document confirming loss of citizenship. Non-nationals of Latvia or stateless persons provide the confirmation that they have no citizenship of other country. This requirement is not applied to persons who had been assigned a refugee status.
Children younger than 15 years permanently living in Latvia may be naturalized together with their parents.
Application for citizenship may be denied due to a number of grounds stipulated by the legislation of Latvia (it is recommended to familiarize with them in advance).