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Schengen Visa Guide

How Is Overstaying in the Schengen Area Punished?

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How Is Overstaying in the Schengen Area Punished?

How Is Overstaying in the Schengen Area Punished? Schengen Visas are not easy to obtain. There are lots of documents you need to collect and requirements you must meet. You have to attend an interview and then wait for the visa to be processed. Once you receive the visa, it feels like everything was worth it.

Some people feel the 90-day period per six months is sufficient time to stay in the Schengen Zone. Others get visas that have shorter periods of stay, like five days or two weeks. However, many Schengen visa holders are tempted to stay longer once the visa expires, wondering repeatedly: What happens if I overstay in Europe?

The following things should be kept in mind if you’re tempted to do such a thing:

See also  Turkey Citizenship by Investment | Turkey Golden Visa

First of all, you should be aware that overstaying a visa does not go unnoticed. The Schengen immigration authorities have a database for every person who enters or leaves, and for every overstay, even for a day.

It could be a fine, immediate deportation, or even being banned from entering the Schengen Zone for a specified period of time regardless of whether the overstay was intentional or unintentional.

Also, it does not matter whether you entered Schengen territory on a Schengen Visa or whether you are a national of a country to which a visa waiver has been granted. Overstaying 90 days per 180 days is not allowed, even if you belong to one of the latter. This does not apply whether you are overstaying a Schengen tourist visa or a student visa. You will get your visa overstaying penalty if you do such a thing.

Consequences of Overstaying in the Schengen Zone

In spite of the lack of a common overstaying penalty policy among Schengen Member States, each state applies its own type of penalty.

Therefore, the consequences of overstaying in the Schengen territory, whether it is your visa or the 90 days allowed for nationals of the countries under the visa-waiver program, depend a lot on the number of days you have overstayed and the country where you get caught. Known for applying very high fines to overstayers, Germany has the strictest immigration laws in the EU in this direction.

Each member state applies one of the following types of penalties for overstaying a Schengen visa or permitted stay.

Deportation

You will be totally deported to your home country when you get caught staying illegally in Europe. Your case and the country where you are caught will determine the deportation process. You may be deported immediately, within a few hours or after several days. A person who engages in paid activities while overstaying their visa, or engages in illegal activities, will most likely be taken into custody and await trial. Upon conviction, you will be jailed or fined a high amount of money. After completing the punishment, you will be deported to your home country and barred from entering Schengen for a certain period of time.

Deportation is always followed by another consequence. Usually, you will know about it in advance of being deported since you will receive your case’s decision. You might be able to leave without further penalties if you just overstayed for a few days, and you are lucky to be caught in a country that goes easy on overstayers.

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Difficulties coming back to Schengen

Even if you get back to your home country without any fine or ban, you should know that your overstaying will cause you problems the next time you try to enter the Schengen Zone. Overstayers, regardless of where they were caught, are usually treated suspiciously by immigration officers and border guards. The EU external borders or getting a Schengen visa will therefore be difficult for you.

Fine

There are different penalties for overstaying a visa depending on the member state. Nevertheless, if you are caught after you have illegally stayed in the Schengen Area for a long time, you will not only be fined but you will also be banned from entering the Schengen Area for an extended period of time, or even permanently.

Ban

An individual can be banned from entering any of the Schengen area member states for a period of three years or more if they overstay and work or engage in other illegal activities.

No consequences

In some cases, people may not suffer any consequences for overstaying their visas, such as if they are a child or can’t travel without a caretaker due to an illness or disability. Alternatively, if you become ill or are in an accident that prevents you from traveling home, you may be advised to apply for a Schengen visa extension rather than overstay.

See also  What are the 26 Schengen Area Countries?

How to Avoid Overstaying in Schengen

Many people unintentionally overstay their visas because they are unclear about how long they are permitted to remain in the Schengen Zone, or they have the wrong information. Therefore, you should always be aware of the period of time you are allowed to stay in a member state to avoid accidentally overstaying it. Just because you stayed after your visa expired without realizing it, you won’t be charged with any penalties. Make sure to check the following in order to prevent such a thing from happening:

90/180 Schengen Visa Rule

Many people misunderstand this rule, which, in fact, is quite easy. You will be affected by this rule if you are in Europe without a visa because you are from a visa-exempt country or entered on a multiple-entry visa for more than six months. If you have been in Europe for more than 90 days within the last six months, count the last 180 days. Even if you enter Schengen territory just before midnight, your first day is counted as day 1, while your last day is counted as the day you leave.

Schengen Visa Duration of Stay & Validity

It is common for people to overstay because they mistake Visa Validity and Duration of Stay as the same thing. A visa validity is the date from which the holder is allowed to enter the Schengen Area, and the duration of stay is how long he or she may remain there. Visa stickers affixed to passports of travelers permitted to enter the Schengen Zone provide details about the validity and duration of their visas.

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Conclusion

Schengen Area can have severe consequences, including fines, deportation, and bans from re-entry. The strict enforcement by Schengen Member States necessitates a clear understanding of visa rules, validity, and duration of stay. Avoiding unintentional overstays requires adherence to the 90/180 Schengen Visa Rule and distinguishing between visa validity and duration of stay. It is crucial to stay informed and comply with regulations to prevent any repercussions and ensure a smooth travel experience within the Schengen Zone.

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Schengen Visa Guide

Turkey Citizenship by Investment | Turkey Golden Visa

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Turkey Citizenship by Investment | Turkey Golden Visa

Turkey Citizenship by Investment | Turkey Golden Visa. In 2016, the Turkish citizenship by investment program (often referred to as a Turkey Golden Visa) was launched. It enables foreign investors to obtain a Turkish passport within three to six months.

Real estate investments worth at least $250,000 are the minimum investment option. Other options include investing in government bonds or establishing an enterprise that will create jobs for Turkish citizens.

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Turkey Citizenship by Investment Options

You can obtain Turkish citizenship by investment in the following ways:

  • Invest at least $250,000 in real estate
  • Invest at least $500,000. Hold government bonds for at least three years.
  • A minimum of 50 employees will be needed to establish a company.
  • A minimum investment of $500K is required.
  • Make a minimum deposit of $500,000. Keep it for a minimum of three years in a Turkish bank.
  • Over a three-year period, invest at least $500,000 in a real estate investment fund or venture capital investment fund.

Benefits of the Turkey Investment Visa

For foreign investors, Turkey offers many advantages, including:

  • Turkish passport in as little as three months.Within three to six months after making your investment, you can apply for Turkish citizenship.
  • Immediate permanent residence and citizenship in Turkey. When you apply for a Turkish Investment Visa, you will receive a permanent residence card, which you can use to live and invest in Turkey.
  • Pathway to the US E2 Investment Visa.If you are a Turkish citizen, you can apply for the US E2 Investment Visa, which allows you to live, invest, and work there.
  • Business opportunities in EEC (European Economic Community) countries. The Ankara Agreement allows Turkish citizens to work, establish a business, and permanently move to an EEC country. Though a visa is required, the application procedure is easier than in other countries.
  • Pathway to the UK’s Turkish Businessperson visa.The Turkish passport enables you to set up a UK business and obtain British permanent residence through a facilitated pathway.
  • Visa-free entry to over 110 countries. You can visit more than 110 countries without a visa as a Turkish citizen, including Mexico, Japan, South Korea, and Hong Kong. Turkish citizens are also being considered for Schengen visa liberalization.
See also  EU Blue Card

Residency Requirements

You can obtain Turkish citizenship as an investor six months after making an investment, without ever living in Turkey.

In addition, you can hire representatives to handle your investment, visa application, and citizenship process, such as the advisors and legal experts at La Vida – Golden Visas. As such, you do not have to be in Turkey for your investment and visa application, if you so wish.

In some cases, however, you may need to enter Turkey in order to oversee your investment. For example, if you are purchasing real estate, then you will need to inspect the property or compare different options.

Who Can Apply for a Turkey Investment Visa?

If you meet the following criteria, you may apply for a Turkey Investment Visa:

  • You are an adult.
  • No criminal record exists for you.
  • You have never stayed in Turkey illegally.
  • Due diligence has been completed on your investment.
  • Your funds have been legally obtained.

How to Apply for a Turkey Investment Visa?

To apply for a Turkish Investment Visa, follow these steps:

  1. Make an investment that qualifies.It’s important to talk to your advisors (like those at La Vida – Golden Visas) to determine which investment is best for you.
  2. Obtain a Certificate of Eligibility.There are different authorities responsible for issuing a certificate of eligibility depending on your investment. In the case of real estate investment, you must contact the Turkish General Directorate of Land Registry and Cadaster of the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization.
  3. Open a Turkish bank account. It is necessary for you to open a bank account in Turkey, where you can deposit your money. Your advisors and legal representatives can help you open the account.
  4. Apply for a Turkish residence permit. You can apply for a residence permit at the Turkish Provincial Directorate of Immigration Administration once your investment is approved. Your residence permit will be issued immediately, so you can live in Turkey while you finalise your investment and apply for citizenship.
  5. Make your investment.The citizenship application requires you to finalize your investment and collect all required documents, certificates, translations, etc.
  6. Apply for Turkey citizenship. After you have made your investment, you can apply for Turkish citizenship at the Provincial Directorate of Census and Citizenship. This application usually takes four months to process.
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Where to Receive Certificate of Eligibility for Turkey Investor Visa?

You must apply to the following institutions (based on the nature of your investment) to obtain a Certificate of Eligibility for investment in Turkey:

  • For investment in real estate: The Turkish Land Registry and Cadaster is administered by the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization.
  • For a capital investment: Turkish Ministry of Industry and Technology Incentive Application and Foreign Capital.
  • For a deposit in a Turkish bank account: Regulatory and Supervision Agency’s Department of Financial Consumer Relations.
  • For an investment in government bonds: The Turkish Ministry of Finance and Treasury.
  • For purchasing real estate investment fund share or venture capital investment fund share: The Brokerage Activities Department of the Turkish Capital Markets Board.
  • For establishing a company that will employ at least 50 people; The General Directorate of International Labor of the Ministry of Family, Labor and Social Services is responsible for this area.

Family Members of Turkey Investor Visa Applicants

The following family members can be included in your Turkey Investor Visa application:

  • Your spouse or partner.
  • Children under the age of 18.
  • Financially dependent children up to the age of 21.
  • Elderly parents who are dependent.
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Documents for Turkey Investor Visa Application

In order to apply for a Turkey Investor Visa, you will need the following documents:

  • Passport (for each applicant).
  • Proof of having made the necessary investment.
  • A Turkish Tax Number.
  • Document proving you have never stayed in Turkey illegally.
  • Tax and fee receipts for Turkey Investment Visa applications.
  • Background checks (for each applicant).
  • Birth certificate (for each applicant).
  • Passport-size pictures (for each applicant).
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable).
  • Divorce certificate (if applicable).
  • Death certificate (if applicable).
  • Proof of health insurance that’s valid in Turkey (for each applicant).

The Validity of Turkey Investor Visa

Following your investment, you can apply for Turkish citizenship, which is granted for life, and a Turkish passport. You must renew your passport every ten years.

Does Turkey Allow Dual Nationality?

In Turkey, dual nationality is allowed for investors. You can maintain your current citizenship while acquiring a Turkish passport.

A dual citizenship must, however, be allowed by the nationality laws of both countries.

Before obtaining a Turkish passport, you must renounce your current citizenship if it does not allow dual citizenship.

See also  Turkey Citizenship by Investment | Turkey Golden Visa

Going From Turkey Investor Visa to the US E2 Investment Visa

The Tukey Investor Visa makes you eligible for the US’s E2 Investment Visa. The US has a treaty with 78 countries (including Turkey) which grants applicants an E2 Visa in exchange for an investment of $100,000 to $200,000.

Although the E2 Visa is non-immigrant (does not grant a Green Card), it is a five-year visa that can be renewed indefinitely. Since the E2 visa requires only $200,000, as opposed to $900,000, it is more desirable than the EB5.

Because investors can obtain Turkish citizenship relatively quickly by investing in Turkey, many investors who wish to enter the US choose to go through this process: invest in Turkey, get a Turkish passport, apply for an E2  Visa.

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Conclusion

In summary, the Turkish Citizenship by Investment program, commonly known as the Turkey Golden Visa, was initiated in 2016, providing a swift route to Turkish citizenship within three to six months for foreign investors. Options include real estate investments of at least $250,000, government bond holdings, or establishing enterprises generating jobs for Turkish citizens. The benefits encompass visa-free travel, immediate permanent residence, and pathways to US E2 Investment Visa and business opportunities in European Economic Community (EEC) countries.

The process involves qualifying investments, obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility, opening a Turkish bank account, applying for a residence permit, making the investment, and finally, applying for Turkish citizenship. Dual nationality is permitted, allowing investors to maintain their original citizenship while acquiring Turkish citizenship. The Turkish Investor Visa also serves as a pathway to the US E2 Investment Visa, providing a strategic route for international investors.

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