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Residence Permit and Work PermitThe Comprehensive Guide to Getting a Work Permit in Istanbul

As an international professional seeking to broaden your career horizon, Getting a Work Permit in Istanbul might be on your radar. This bustling city, not only rich in history and culture, but also a significant hub for various industries, offers numerous opportunities for foreign workers. However, before you pack your bags and book your flight, you need to understand the legalities involved in working in Turkey, primarily the need for a Turkish work permit in Istanbul.

What is a Work Permit and Why is it Important?

A work permit, issued by the Ministry of Family, Labor and Social Services in Turkey, is a legal document that authorizes a foreigner to work and reside in the country within the validity period. It’s crucial for those seeking employment opportunities in Turkey and ensures their legal status as employees. Without a valid work permit, both the foreign worker and their employer are subject to penalties, including administrative fines and temporary entry bans.

Types of Work Permits in Turkey

According to Article 10 of the International Workforce Law No. 6735, work permits in Turkey are classified into three categories based on their duration: temporary, permanent, and independent work permits.

Temporary Work Permit

The temporary work permit is generally granted to individuals who have a job offer from a Turkish employer and meet certain eligibility criteria. This permit is typically issued for a specific job or employer for a limited period. If the work permit extension application is evaluated positively, the foreigner is granted a work permit for a maximum of two years in the first extension application and up to three years in the subsequent extension applications, depending on the same employer.

Permanent Work Permit

Foreigners with a long-term residence permit or who have legally held a work permit for at least eight years in Turkey can apply for a permanent work permit. This permit allows individuals to stay and work in Turkey indefinitely, as long as they continue to meet the conditions set by the immigration authorities.

Independent Work Permit

The independent work permit is designed for foreign individuals who wish to work in Turkey as self-employed or independent professionals, rather than being employed by a specific Turkish employer. However, this permit is issued for a limited period and requires the foreigner to meet certain conditions and provide the required documents.

The Application Process for a Work Permit in Istanbul

The process of applying for a work permit in Istanbul involves several steps, which vary depending on whether the application is made domestically or from abroad.

Domestic Application

For a foreigner residing in Turkey to obtain a work permit, they must hold a residence permit for at least six months. The employer is responsible for submitting the work permit application on behalf of the foreign employee through the E-Permit System. The Ministry of Labor and Social Security then examines the information and documents submitted by the employee and the employer. If there are missing documents, the employer is requested to provide them.

Application from Abroad

If a foreigner is applying for a work permit from outside Turkey, they must apply for a work visa at the Turkish consulate in their home country or the country where they legally reside. After the foreign national applies for a work visa from abroad, the employer in Turkey must apply for the work permit for the foreign national via the E-Permit System within ten working days. All required documents must be delivered to the Ministry in person or by mail within six working days.

Required Documents for Work Permit Application

Whether you’re applying domestically or from abroad, there are certain documents that you must provide during the application process. These include:

  • Employment contract
  • Biometric photo of the foreigner
  • Passport
  • Diploma
  • For the employer: Tax Registration Certificate, Trade Registry Gazette, Workplace balance sheet, Workplace activity certificate, and Preliminary permission document

Work Permit Fee in Istanbul

To obtain a work permit for foreigners in Istanbul, you’ll have to pay certain fees. As of 2021, the fee amount for a temporary work permit is 1017.80 TL, while the fee for an indefinite and independent work permit is 10,181.70 TL. There’s also a card fee of 125.00 TL for all types of work permits.

The Role of Turkish Work Permit Lawyers in Istanbul

Navigating the process of obtaining a work permit in Istanbul can be complex and time-consuming. The assistance of a Turkish work permit lawyer in Istanbul can make the process smoother and more manageable. A lawyer can guide you through each step, ensure that all your documents are in order, and help you comply with all the legal requirements.

At Istanbul Law Office, our skilled team of English and Turkish-speaking lawyers specialize in work permits and can provide you with the expert legal services you need. Our team can assist you with the entire process, from preparing the necessary documents, making applications, and maintaining correspondence.

FAQ

What happens if I work in Turkey without a work permit?

Working in Turkey without a valid work permit is considered illegal. Both the foreign worker and their employer are subject to penalties, including administrative fines and temporary entry bans.

Can I apply for a work permit from outside Turkey?

Yes, foreigners can apply for a work permit from their home country or the country where they legally reside. They must apply for a work visa at the Turkish consulate and their employer in Turkey must apply for the work permit via the E-Permit System within ten working days.

Can I extend my work permit in Istanbul?

Yes, a temporary work permit can be extended for up to two years upon the first application and up to a maximum of three years upon subsequent applications.

What if my work permit application is rejected?

If your work permit application is rejected, you can appeal the decision within 30 days from the notification of the refusal decision. For more information about appealing against a work permit rejection, you can check this guide.

Appealing against a Turkish Work Permit Rejection in İstanbul

Conclusion

Acquiring a work permit in Istanbul is a crucial step for any foreigner seeking to live and work in this vibrant city. While the process may seem daunting, with the right guidance and assistance, it can be smooth and hassle-free. At Istanbul Law Office, our team of English and Turkish-speaking attorneys is ready to assist you with your work permit application and other legal matters related to living and working in Istanbul. Contact us today for professional help.