Immigration to Israel from various countries, especially from the former Soviet Union, has increased significantly in recent decades. A particular surge occurred in the early 1990s. However, over the past few years there has been a significant increase in the migration flow towards the Promised Land. Political instability and deteriorating living standards in some countries are to blame.

Residence permit in Israel

The desire of foreigners to move to Israel for a long period of time, to obtain a residence permit and then an Israeli passport is understandable. Despite the sluggish military confrontations and periodic series of terrorist attacks, the country has a stable economy, a high level of social security and quality medical care. Climatic conditions along with many ancient historical monuments are attractive not only for tourists, but also for permanent residents.

However, compared to many countries in the world, including most European countries, to get a residence permit in Israel is not an easy task. You can even say almost unreal for foreigners who do not have Jewish roots. None of the traditional ways, such as buying real estate, studying in an Israeli university, employment or business in Israel, do not guarantee a residence permit. Further, let's try to understand what are the options and answer the question of how to get a residence permit in Israel.

How to get a residence permit in Israel

Residence permit in Israel by repatriation

The most affordable way to get a residence permit in Israel, first of all, associated with the presence of Jewish roots. Especially for these purposes, the country has a law "on return", according to which the ancestors of Jews, and necessarily on the maternal line, as well as spouses, children, grandchildren and even members of their families, have the right to use the procedure of repatriation. A prerequisite is Jewish religion or Giyur (conversion to Judaism).

The procedure of moving to Israel involves a careful collection of documents proving Jewish roots, with which it is necessary to apply to the Israeli Consulate in his country. The candidate must not pose a threat to Israel's national security and in principle must not have committed serious crimes. Employees of the diplomatic department will conduct a preliminary interview, where they will inquire about the motivation for immigration to Israel and ask clarifying questions.

Residence permit in Israel by repatriation

If the grounds for repatriation (Aliyah) will be sufficient special Israeli organization Sokhnut will provide the necessary assistance in moving, including the purchase of a plane ticket, and even provide financial assistance for the first time. Usually a repatriate is issued a special temporary visa type A1, indicating that the person is going to Israel for permanent residence. After arrival, you can get not only a residence permit, but also Israeli citizenship, and in a fairly short period of time.

Important. The procedure of repatriation can be passed already being on Israeli territory. Most foreigners do not need a visa to visit Israel for tourist purposes (up to 90 days). To do this, you need to apply to the Interior Ministry of Israel with the appropriate application.

Residence permit in Israel without Jewish roots

Obtaining a residence permit in Israel by foreigners who do not have Jewish roots, involves a process of family reunification. The following persons can take advantage of this method:

  • spouses and cohabitants of an Israeli citizen or a foreigner permanently residing in Israeli territory;

  • single parents of an Israeli citizen or permanent resident of Israel, aged over 67 for a man and over 65 for a woman, provided they have no children in another country who can provide the necessary care.

For many developed countries in the world, family reunification is practically a matter of course. But not in Israel. Employees of the local Ministry of Interior carefully consider each application, very often there are additional conditions, so often require the services of local lawyers. Let's consider the main points.

To move to Israel, family members will need to obtain a visa B1, allowing you to work on Israeli territory. After some time, a temporary residence permit (A5 visa) is issued, and then permanent residence or citizenship. For each category of persons there are different terms of granting a residence permit, which can also change by decision of the Ministry of Interior of Israel, but usually the procedure is as follows:

  • For the spouse of an Israeli citizen – a B1 visa is issued for six months or a year, after which it is possible to apply for an A5 visa, with the right of annual renewal. After 4 years it is possible to apply for permanent residency or citizenship.

  • For the spouse of a permanent resident of Israel – B1 visa is issued for 2-2.5 years, then issued an A5 visa, which is used for 3 years. At the end of this period receive permanent residence or citizenship.

  • In the case of cohabitation with a citizen of Israel – B1 visa is issued for 2-3 years, then issued an A5 visa and after 4 years there is a chance for permanent residence or citizenship.

  • In the case of cohabitation with a permanent resident of Israel – visa B1 is issued for 4 years, then get a visa A5 for 5 years and only after that there is a chance to obtain permanent status.

  • In the case of parents – if the age of up to 70 years is issued visa B1 for 2 years, if more than 70 years for 1 year. Then within 2 years the A5 visa is valid. After this period, permanent residence is issued.

For the initial receipt of a B1 visa and for each subsequent renewal, including temporary residence in Israel, will have to undergo a fairly rigorous verification of the authenticity of the close relationship, the so-called step procedure. If during the interview the local authorities suspect that the marriage is a sham, or the initial evidence for the B1 visa is insufficient, the family reunification can be forgotten.

Usually, the following information is provided as proof of the authenticity of the relationship in order to obtain a B1 visa:

  • Hebrew letters from both persons, detailing the sincerity of the personal relationship and the need for cohabitation. A date and signature are required.

  • Letters in Hebrew from family members and close friends (about 5 pieces), confirming the close relationship of the visa applicants. With date, signature and contact details.

  • Several photos together, including with friends and relatives.

  • Other evidence in the form of printouts of phone calls, postcards, bills from hotels, restaurants and so on.

  • Proof of cohabitation, such as a real estate rental agreement, utility bills with personal information, and so on.

In each individual case, the Israeli authorities reserve the right to refuse to issue a residence permit.

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