Blog

residence permit in Serbia

RESIDENCE PERMIT IN SERBIA ON THE BASIS OF FAMILY REUNIFICATION-LAWYER

As one of the classic legal basis, present in imigration law of all countries in the world, for regulating legal residence of foreigners occurs family reunification. This institute rests on the universal principle that the right on joint family life is inviolable. 

Law of foreigners of the Republic of Serbia recognizes family reunification as one of the most important reasons for approval of  temporary residence of foreign citizens. Thousands of temporary residences are approved in Serbia annualy on this basis.

WHO HAS THE RIGHT TO FAMILY REUNIFICATION?

Law of foreigners gives the right to several categories of foreigners to obtain temporary residence permit based on family reunification. Immediate family members have the right to temporary residence:

  • from the citizens of Serbia
  • from a foreigner with approved temporary residence in Serbia
  • from a foreigner with approved permanent residence in Serbia 
  • from a foreigner who has been granted asylum in Serbia

By immediate family members it is understood that they are:

  • spouses or  extramartial partners
  • married, illegitimate or adopted children, as well as stepchildren, up to the age of 18, provided they are not married
  • parents or adoptive parents of children up to the age of 18 who are not married

We note that spouses or extramartial partners have an unconditional right to temporary residence permit in Serbia, while other members of the immediate family are subject to certain restrictions.The main goal of the legislator appears to be the desire to protect minor children who need the greates parental support. However, this kind of special protection does not come at the expence of the need to encourage the independence of children, whereby reaching 18 years of age is taken as a watershed.

In support of this, there is a legal solution according to which parents or adoptive parents can obtain temporary residence for a maximum of 18 years of the child`s life, or even shorter if the child is married. On the other hand, children have the right to family reunification with their parents until they reach the age of 18, i.e. shorter if they were married before reaching the legal age. For example, if the child had a temporary residence permit in Serbia  based on family reunification with his mother, after reaching the age of 18, the child must apply for residence permit on another basis (e.g. employment, studies, etc.)

Inspired by reasons of humanity, the legislator makes exceptions, granting the right to two more categories of foreigners to obtain temporary residence in Serbia on this basis. First, the right to family reunification is granted to another relative of a citizen of Serbia or a foreigner who has been granted temporary residence or permanent residence in Serbia, or another relative of his spouse or extramartial partner, who is dependent on them and does not have adequate family care in the country of origin. Second, the right to family reunification is granted to an adult child of citizen of Serbia or a foreigner who has been granted temporary residence or permanent residence in Serbia, or an adult child of his spouse or extramartial partner who has not concluded marriage and who cannot meet his needs due to his health condition. 

These exceptions open the possibility for parents of children after reaching 18 years of age, as well as members of the extended family (brothers, sisters, grandparents) to obtain temporary residence permit in Serbia in this basis. 

CONDITIONS AND DURATION OF APPROVAL OF TEMPORARY RESIDENCE

In addition to fulfilling the general conditions for obtaining a temporary residence permit in Serbia, a foreigner must provide evidence in support of the existence of a relevant family relationship, which is the basis for obtaining a residence permit. 

When it comes to married spouses, it is neccessary to obtain proof of marriage. If the marriage is concluded abroad, the registration of that marriage in the registry books in Serbia appears as a prerequisite. On the other hand, since an extramaritial union is, as a rule, a de facto union of the lives of two people of the opposite sex, which is not registered in a large number of countries, not even in Serbia, proving its existence requiers a greater effort. Unmarried spouses obtain appropriate documents and statements proving the existance of a more permanent union of life. 

Temporary residence based on family reunification is granted for maximum duration of 3 years, which can be extended for the same period. However, in any case, the temporary residence of a foreigner based on family reunificaton with a foreigner on temporary residence can last at most until the expiration of the temporary residence approval of that foreigner. For example, if the mother has an approved temporary residence permit based on employment until 30.06.2025. her unmarried minor daughter can receive a temporary residence permit until 30.06.2025. at the latest.

The request for a temporary residence permit can be submitted in person or electronically.

For more information on this issue, as well as on other issues in the field of immigration law, it is best to contact a lawyer.

Share this post

Leave a Reply