Stay of alines in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Visa residence is the right of an alien to stay in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the period stated in the visa.

Visa-free stay is a right to stay in Bosnia and Herzegovina of an alien who comes from a country with a visa-free regime. Aliens who are exempt from visa for entry into the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, have the right to enter and stay in the country for a total of up to 90 days over a period of six months from the date of first entry, unless otherwise provided by an international treaty to which Bosnia and Herzegovina is a party or by decision of the Council of Ministers. (Article 21 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum).

Decision on Visas determines the list of countries whose citizens do not need visas to enter and stay in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 2 of the Decision on Visas).

Temporary residence permit may be issued for a period of up to one year, unless otherwise determined by the residence permit.

Permanent residence is a right of residence in Bosnia and Herzegovina for an indefinite period of time.

Upon arrival to Bosnia and Herzegovina aliens are required to register their residence and inform the Service for Foreigners' Affairs - Field Offices or the competent organizational unit of the Ministry of the Interior in accordance to Article 74 and 75 of Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum and Article 100 and 101 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens, so they could after fulfillment of legal obligations gain certain rights, and accordingly avoid the statutory sanctions for non-compliance with the legislation in force in the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

A temporary residence permit may be issued for reasons specified in Article 52 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum.

An application for the first temporary residence permit and the request for extension of the residence permit shall be submitted to the Service. The request to the Service coming from abroad shall be filed through a Bosnia and Herzegovina DCR, and the request within Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be submitted directly with the competent organizational unit of the Service.

As a rule, the application for the first temporary residence permit must be submitted outside Bosnia and Herzegovina through DCR, by applicant in person.

In the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, an alien may file the application for the first temporary residence permit only as outlined below:

- In case he/she entered Bosnia and Herzegovina with a long- term visa (type D visa), or

- In case he/she is a citizen of a country with no visa regime.

(Article 60 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum and Article 31 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens, Application for authorization / renewal of a temporary residence - Form No. 12).

Terms and conditions for granting temporary residence permits are regulated by Article 53 Paragraph 1 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum.

With the application - extension of a temporary residence permit is required to submit evidence justifying the stay on the required basis. (Article 53, paragraph 2 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum and Article 58 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Marriage to a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 59 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Extramarital community with a citizen Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 60 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Family reunification (Article 61 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Education (Article 63 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Employment as specified in an issued work permit (Article 64 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Work without a work permit (Article 65 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Treatment or rehabilitation (Article 87 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Stay in a nursing home (Article 88 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Stay for humanitarian reasons (Article 89 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Stay based on an international treaty to which Bosnia and Herzegovina is a party (Article 90 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Stay out of other legitimate reasons (Article 91 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Ownership of real estate in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 92 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens).

Article 84 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum defines the categories of aliens who may apply for approval or extension of a temporary residence permit on the basis of work without a work permit:

- Important persons (Article 66 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Founders of a company or enterprise with a seat in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 67 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- University professors and scientists (Article 68 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens )

- Experts, teachers and lecturers from foreign cultural and educational institutions (Article 69 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Civil and military officials of other countries’ governments working in Bosnia and Herzegovina on the basis of agreements on cooperation with Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 70 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Members of international scientific missions, conducting research in Bosnia and Herzegovina approved by the Council of Ministers (Article 71 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Representatives of religious communities registered in Bosnia and Herzegovina while performing duties only with regard to religious service (Article 72 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens )

- International correspondents accredited in Bosnia and Herzegovina or reporters for international media (Article 73 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Artists and technical staff, authors and performers (Article 74 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens performing, on the basis of agreements with the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ministry of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ministry of Justice of Bosnia and Herzegovina, or the Ministry of Security, duties relevant for defense, legal system or state security or attending specializing courses in the mentioned fields (Article 75 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens visiting Bosnia and Herzegovina in order to participate in sports and chess events (Article 76 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Experts in the field of protection of cultural heritage, library science and archivist science (Article 77 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens sent by international employer, providing education and training for persons employed with natural and legal persons with a seat in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Article 78 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens acquiring expert education and training (Article 79 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens )

- Aliens who perform tasks related to the delivery, installation and servicing of machinery or equipment (Article 80 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens who participate in organized professional conferences and seminars (Article 81 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens participating on fairs or exhibits where their employer is presented (Article 82 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Aliens employed in circuses and amusement parks (Article 83 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens )

- Aliens who are engaged in projects of importance for Bosnia and Herzegovina if such experts or key persons are significant for realization of the project (Article 84 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens )

- Aliens who are staying for the purpose of volunteer work in humanitarian organizations, citizens' associations and foundations (Article 85 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

- Doctors who are invited by medical institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina to perform specialist examinations and other medical services (Article 86 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens).

The documentation submitted with the application for approval/extension of a temporary residence shall be submitted in the original form or a certified copy, and documents in a foreign language shall be submitted with a translation into one of the official languages in Bosnia and Herzegovina. (Article 2 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens).

More information about the documents required to be enclosed with the application for a temporary residence permit can be found on the website of the Service for Foreigners' Affairs www.sps.gov.ba.

A permanent residence permit shall be issued to an alien on the following conditions: That he/she has resided in the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the basis of a temporary residence permit for at least five years uninterruptedly prior to submitting the application for issuance of a permanent residence permit, that he/she has sufficient and regular funds in order to support himself/herself, that he/she has confirmed adequate accommodation, that he/she has confirmed health insurance, knows one of the languages and alphabets in official use in and that he/she is not subject to criminal proceedings and have not been convicted of a criminal offense, as evidenced by a certificate issued by the competent authority of the country where he/she has the habitual residence not older than six months from the date of filing requirements. It is believed that the alien resided continuously in Bosnia and Herzegovina if during the period of five years he/she was absent from Bosnia and Herzegovina several times in total up to 10 months or once up to six months. (Article 59 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum and Article 93 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens , Application for issuance of permanent residence - Form no. 13).

An administrative fee in the amount of 200,00 BAM shall be paid for the issuance of a permanent residence permit (Article 1 of the Decision on Amending the Tariff of Administrative Fees).

The documentation submitted with the application for a permanent residence shall be submitted in the original copy or a certified copy, and documents in a foreign language shall be submitted with a translation into one of the official languages in Bosnia and Herzegovina. (Article 2 of the Rulebook on Entry and Stay of Aliens)

An alien shall not be granted permanent residence (Article 59, paragraph 5 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum) if he/she resided in Bosnia and Herzegovina:

a) on the basis of temporary protection or has submitted an application for temporary protection and awaits a decision on his/her status;

b) on the basis of international protection or has submitted an application for temporary protection and awaits a decision on his/her status;

c) on the basis of a legal status as set out in Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations from 1961, Vienna Convention on consular relations from 1963, Convention on special missions from 1969 or Vienna Convention on the Representation of States in their Relations with International Organizations of a Universal Character from 1975;

d) on the basis of temporary residence due to humanitarian reasons under Article 54 (Temporary residence on humanitarian grounds), paragraph (1), item b), c), d) and e) of this Law;

e) for the purpose of serving a sentence or execution of another criminal sanction or other commitment on the basis of a Court decision or a decision of another competent authority;

f) on the basis of medical treatment or rehabilitation,

g) on the basis of work without a work permit toward the realization of a project relevant for Bosnia and Herzegovina which is implemented by an international or a local institution or a humanitarian organization, an association, a foundation or another organization;

h) on the basis of work without a work permit if an alien provides services on behalf of a foreign employer or is a volunteer, or

i) on the basis of family reunification with an alien whose basis for temporary residence does not belong to the one which is subject to application for permanent residence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

An alien whose temporary residence is granted on the basis of education, for the time necessary for the approval of permanent residence, half of the time spent on the basis of granted temporary residence is considered. Application for permanent residence which is filed during temporary residence may not be on the basis of education. (Article 59, paragraph 6 of the Law on Movement and Stay of Aliens and Asylum)