Foreigners wishing to live in Russia for an extended period of time must apply for a Russian residence permit in the region they hope to reside. Whether you are hoping to live in Russia for just a few years or to move here permanently, you must start by obtaining a Temporary Residence Permit (TRP). After residing in Russia with a TRP for at least six months, you may apply for a Permanent Residence Permit. Learn more about the application process here.
Applying for a Temporary Residence Permit
Residency in Russia is not available to everyone. Generally, you must have some personal connection to Russia in order to apply for a residence permit. To qualify, you must fulfill at least one of the following conditions:
- You were born in Russia (RSFSR).
- You have a parent or adult child who is a Russian citizen.
- You are married to a Russian citizen, who currently lives in Russia.
- You have invested a certain amount of money into the Russian economy.
- You have performed military service in Russia.
You participate in the State Program for Assisting Compatriots Residing Abroad in Their Voluntary Resettlement in the Russian Federation.
Applicants must also demonstrate competency in the Russian language and a knowledge of Russia’s history and legal system in order to be approved for a TRP. These skills must be verified by an accredited institution.
There are a few categories of foreign nationals who are exempt from these requirements, including:
- Those under 18 or over 60 years of age.
- Students at accredited institutions.
- Foreign specialists.
- Family members of former Soviet residents with education documents dating back to before 1991, when Russian language was compulsory.
If you are moving to Russia to start a business or work in a particular field, you may qualify for temporary residence status under the investment of funds criteria or the foreign specialist category. A Russian law firm with experience in immigration services would be able to advise you on these particular methods for entry.
General Information About a Temporary Residence Permit
A TRP usually takes about six months from the date the application is submitted to be approved. The permit is good for three years, but it must be authenticated every year. You are restricted to residing only in the region that issued your TRP and must obtain a work permit to work outside the region of residence. If you leave Russia, you will have to apply for a single exit/entry visa and must return within six months.
To apply for a TRP, you will need to supply the following documents:
- An application
- Two photographs
- A valid passport
- Proof of income
- Certificate of no criminal record from the country of permanent residence
- Medical documentation proving you are not carrying HIV or any infectious diseases, nor are addicted to any drugs
- Documentation confirming that the applicant is eligible for the simplified procedure of obtaining the temporary residence permit (such applicant is not required to obtain a quota in order to apply for the temporary residence)
- Document confirming Russian language skills and knowledge of Russian history and the basics of the legislation of the Russian Federation
Applying for a Permanent Residence Permit
A Permanent Residence Permit grants additional privileges to foreign citizens living in Russia, including travel in and out of Russia without a visa and the ability to work without a work permit on the whole territory of Russia. The initial permit is valid for five years, but can be extended without limitations. You cannot apply for a Permanent Residence Permit until you have held a TRP for at least six months. You should apply for the permanent permit at least six months before your TRP expires to ensure uninterrupted residency. In addition to the documentation required for a TRP, to apply for permanent status, you must submit the following:
- Confirmation of a valid TRP
- Birth certificate
- Passport or other proof of identity
With a Permanent Residence Permit, you must still authenticate your residency every year and may not be out of Russia for more than six months at a time.
Ready to Apply for Residency in Russia? We Can Help!
If you were born in Russia or are the child of a Russian citizen, obtaining a residence permit should not present any problems. However, if you hope to move to Russia to work and don’t have connections to a Russian citizen, the application process may be more difficult. Working with the immigration and corporate attorneys at Jus Privatum will provide you with the knowledge and tools you need for your best chance at approval. Connect with us now through the link on this page.