Turkish Citizenship

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Turkish Citizenship

The Turkish Citizenship Law governs citizenship in Turkey. It outlines eligibility criteria and the procedures for acquiring or denying Turkish citizenship. Turkish citizenship comes with many rights and responsibilities. It allows you to vote, work and own property. You can also receive state protection and take part in the country's social and political life. You can acquire Turkish citizenship by naturalization, birth on the territory of Turkey, descent from a Turkish father, or birth there. There are different ways to get Turkish citizenship.


Conditions For Obtaining Turkish Citizenship

These conditions are required to obtain Turkish citizenship:

  • Residency: Must have resided in Turkey for at most 5 years and hold a valid residence permit.
  • Language: A basic knowledge of Turkish language is required.
  • Financial means: As required by the Turkish government, applicants must be able to provide for their family and themselves.
  • Clear Criminal Record: The applicant must have no criminal records and not be a danger to national security.
  • Citizenship Examination: To test their Turkish language and culture knowledge, the applicant might be required to take a citizenship examination.
  • Documentation: If applicable, the applicant must submit various documents including proof of identity, residency and marriage.
  • Approval by the Government: This is the final decision of the government regarding the granting of Turkish citizenship. It may take several months.
  • Invest in Turkish assets such as purchasing a property that is worth more than 400,000 US Dollars.


Citizenship by Naturalisation

Naturalization is the process by which foreign nationals can become citizens of Turkey. This involves meeting certain criteria and following a series of procedures. The applicant must have been in Turkey at least 5 years and be able to show sufficient income or financial resources. 

They also need to pass a Turkish language exam. Naturalization also requires the submission of documents such as proof of identity, residency and marriage. After all requirements are met, applicants can apply for Turkish citizenship. If granted, this confers all rights, responsibilities, and privileges of Turkish citizens. The eligibility criteria and naturalization process can change at any time. 


Citizenship by Investment   

Turkey citizenship by investment refers to the process of getting Turkish citizenship in return for a substantial financial investment. Although the exact requirements and procedures to obtain Turkish citizenship by investment are different, they typically require a significant investment in Turkish real property, government bonds or other approved assets. 

Sometimes, applicants may need to have resided in Turkey for a certain period of time. They also might need to satisfy other eligibility criteria such as basic knowledge of Turkish.

Foreign investors can apply for Turkish citizenship in 6 months, under a simplified program since September 18, 2018.

One of these conditions must be fulfilled in order to participate in the citizenship through investment program:

  • Purchase a Turkey property worth less than 400,000 US Dollars. After 3 years, real estate acquired in Turkey can be sold but citizenship will not be lost. This is the best way to invest in Turkey citizenship. It is also the most affordable. With the right real estate choice, you can earn a 3-8% annual yield and then profitably resell it in a few years. Learn more about Turkish citizenship through real estate investment.
  • Invest at least 500,000 US Dollars in Turkish shares.
  • At least 50 new jobs should be created in Turkey.
  • You must make a deposit of at most 500,000 US Dollars (or another currency equivalent) in a Turkish bank. The condition is that you won't withdraw funds for three years.
  • Purchase Turkish government bonds in the amount of at least 500,000 US Dollars on condition that they are not sold for three years.
  • Purchase a share in a Turkish venture or investment fund for at least 500,000 US Dollars and keep it for three years.


Citizenship by Marriage       

Turkish citizens can obtain Turkish citizenship by marriage through the marriage of a Turkish citizen. To be eligible for Turkish citizenship by marriage, an applicant must have a valid marriage certificate, and live in Turkey for a certain period of time. This is usually at least three years. A basic knowledge of Turkish is required. The applicant must also have no criminal records and not be a threat to national safety.

To obtain Turkish citizenship by marriage, you will need to submit various documents including the marriage certificate and proof of residency. The government ultimately decides whether to grant Turkish citizenship. This process can take many months.


Citizenship by Descent         

Turkey's citizenship by descent refers to the process of getting Turkish citizenship through descent from a Turkish parent. Turkey considers a child of a Turkish parent to be a Turkish citizen by descent, regardless of their origin. A child who was born in Turkey to a Turkish parent might need to register their citizenship and get a Turkish passport.

Sometimes, the Turkish parent of the child might have lost their Turkish citizenship. In such cases, the child may not qualify for Turkish citizenship through descent. If the child meets the required eligibility criteria and follows the appropriate procedures, they may still be eligible to naturalize Turkish citizenship.


Turkish Citizenship by Birth 

If a person is born in Turkey, and one of their parents is Turkish citizen, they can obtain Turkish citizenship by naturalization. A child born to a Turkish parent and who is not a Turkish citizen may be eligible for Turkish citizenship by naturalization. However, they must meet certain requirements and follow the appropriate procedures.

You should be aware that rules and regulations regarding citizenship by birth in Turkey could change. It is best to check with the authorities or an expert to get the most current information.


Citizenship Through Adoption       

Adoption in Turkey is the process of obtaining Turkish citizenship by adopting a child from another country. Adoption is a way to get Turkish citizenship. The child must meet all the requirements and adoptive parents must comply with the legal requirements.

After the adoption is finalized, an adopted child could be eligible to receive Turkish citizenship if they meet certain criteria such as having a clean criminal history and not posing any threat to national security. You will need to submit various documents to obtain Turkish citizenship by adoption, including the adoption decree, and proof of identity.


The Benefits of Turkish Citizenship           

The Turkish citizenship offers many benefits including:

  • Turkey citizens are allowed to live and to work without a visa.
  • Access to social services: Turkish citizens have the right to a variety of social services including education, healthcare and pension benefits.
  • Political rights: Turkish citizens are entitled to vote and run to be elected to office.
  • Turkey's citizens have access to visa-free and visa-on-arrival travel benefits.
  • Protection of the State: Turkish citizens have the right to receive assistance and protection from the Turkish government, both in Turkey and abroad.
  • Family benefits: Turkish citizens can bring their spouses and children to Turkey. They may also be eligible to receive other benefits.


Documents for Obtaining Turkish Citizenship     

The individual circumstances and method of obtaining Turkish citizenship will determine the specific documents needed. Common documents needed to obtain Turkish citizenship are:

  • National identity card or passport: Document proving identity and nationality.
  • Documentation proving residency: A document proving the applicant's legal residence in Turkey (such as a residency permit).
  • Marriage certificate: This is for those who are applying to become Turkish citizens through marriage.
  • Adoption decree: This is for those who are applying to be granted Turkish citizenship by adoption.
  • Birth certificate: This document is used to prove the applicant's Turkish descent, if necessary.
  • Criminal record check: To verify that the applicant has a clean criminal history.
  • If required, proof of language proficiency: To prove that the applicant is proficient in Turkish.
  • Documents pertaining to financial matters: These documents are required to prove the applicant's financial stability.
  • Additional supporting documents: Additional documents may be required depending on each applicant's individual circumstances.


When Can Citizenship be Denied? 

There are many reasons why citizenship in Turkey may be denied.

  • Inadmissibility of eligibility criteria: An applicant who does not meet the criteria for citizenship may lose their application.
  • Criminal record: A Turkish government could deny citizenship to someone with a criminal record. This is because they may be considered a threat for national security.
  • National security concerns: A person may be refused citizenship if they are deemed to be a threat to national safety.
  • False or fraudulent information. An applicant who submits false or fraudulent information in their application could be denied. They may also be subject to legal penalties.
  • Incomplete documentation: An applicant who fails to provide all required documentation may have their application denied.
  • Application denied if applicant fails to meet financial and/or language requirements