Russian Federation: Changes To Permanent And Temporary Residence Permit Rules Forthcoming

Last Updated: 23 August 2019
Article by Fragomen  

At a Glance

  • Multiple changes to Temporary Residence Permit (TRP) and Permanent Residence Permit (PRP) processes which were considered earlier this year will be implemented November 1, 2019.
  • In addition, eligibility for a TRP outside of the government's annual quota will be expanded, which will streamline the residence process for qualifying nationals, and free up more spaces from the quota for other applicants.
  • The changes are part of the wider reform to the TRP and PRP permit process which aim to simplify the application process and to encourage foreign nationals to apply for permanent residence in Russia, which offers the right to reside and work in Russia as well as the possibility to apply for Russian citizenship.

The situation

As an update, the draft changes to Permanent and Temporary Residence permit processes which were previously considered by the Russian State Duma are expected to go into effect starting November 1, 2019.

A closer look

In addition to the changes already discussed previously, the following changes will be implemented starting November 1, 2019:

CHANGE DETAILS IMPACT
Temporary Residence Permit (TRP)

TRP eligibility to be expanded. Eligibility for a TRP issued outside the government's annual quota for TRP will be expanded to include:

  • Citizens of countries which historically comprised the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics who have been awarded a university degree in Russia in a public university and completed a licensed course;
  • Stateless persons or citizens of Ukraine who have permanently lived in Russia and have refugee or temporary refugee status in Russia; and
  • Applicants who are permanently relocating to Russia according to international agreements on the rights of relocating persons.
The removal of the need to apply for a permit from the annual quota will increase the speed and ease of the process for qualifying foreign nationals. In addition, it will leave open more available spaces from the quota for other applicants.
Permanent Residence Permit (PRP)

Six-month penalty waiver for PRP notification. PRP holders will no longer face penalties if they fail to file a notification confirming they live in Russia permanently within the two-month deadline, provided that the notification is filed within six months and the reason for late notification is confirmed, such as illness outside Russia, death of a close relative outside Russia, business trips, etc.

The extended time frame will reduce the risk of noncompliance based on timing factors as foreign nationals will have more time to submit their notifications.
Exception to language requirements. Foreign nationals who live in Russia permanently and have a parent, adoptive parent, guardian or daughter or son who are Russian citizens will no longer need to pass a language, history and legal knowledge exam, whereas currently this is required for all PRP holders. Eligible foreign nationals will benefit from a faster application process. Once they gain a PRP, they will be subject to fewer restrictions, such as the ability to live and work anywhere in Russia without connection to the region in which the foreign national was originally placed.

Background

In recent years, while the number of short-term migrants has been relatively stable, the number long-term residents who seek citizenship in Russia has dropped. The changes are part of the wider reform to the TRP and PRP permit processes which aim to encourage foreign nationals to apply for permanent residence in Russia.

Permanent residents benefit from the right to reside and work in Russia and the opportunity to apply for Russian citizenship.

Other changes recently implemented in Russia to simplify and relax immigration requirements include the expansion of the electronic visa process and relaxed rules for citizenship.

Looking ahead

If Russia continues to rely on an increase of migrants to the country to offset declining population numbers and to attract investment to the country, Fragomen expects further simplified and relaxed requirements to follow.

This includes the expansion of the electronic visa process which will be implemented in specific locations starting October 1, 2019, and the introduction in January 2021 of a unified e-visa system for all foreign nationals entering Russia for up to 16 days for guest stays, touristic, business and humanitarian purposes.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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