Entry conditions and residence permits for Estonia

Living in Europe | Entry conditions/visas | Estonia

Different rules about residence and work in Estonia apply to citizens of the EU and to citizens of third countries. The length of your stay also influences which rules you have to follow.

EU citizens are free to enter Estonia, but if they stay for more than 3 months, they should register their place of residence and apply for an ID-card.

Citizens of third countries may need a visa for short-term visits (up to 6 months). Citizens of third countries need a residence permit for employment for long term work (more than 6 months) in Estonia.

Applications for visas, residence permits or residence permits for employment should be submitted to a diplomatic representation of the Republic of Estonia. Registration of one’s place of residence is necessary in the case of longer visits for EU citizens as well as citizens of third countries.

 

visa roadmap

Roadmap: visas & entry conditions

See this first! This is your map of steps for entering the county.

 

 

EU citizens

EU citizens are free to enter Estonia and can work here without work permits. The same applies to the nationals of Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Switzerland. The only requirement is that if EU citizens stay in Estonia for longer than 3 months, they should register their residence (see tab below) at the local government authority within 3 months. Family members can submit a joint notice of their place of residence.

 

The registration of the place of residence gives the right to temporary residence for 5 years.

An EU citizen who has resided in Estonia permanently for five concecutive years on the basis of the right of temporary residency has the right to obtain permanent residency.

  • Criteria:
    -you hold valid temporary residence permit;
    -the data of your place of residence have been entered into the Population Register of Estonia;
    -you have permanent legal income for subsistence in Estonia;
    -you are covered with health insurane (by Eesti Haigekassa);
    -you comply with integration requirements, i.e. you have knowledge of the Estonian language at least at level B1
 

 

The family members of an EU citizen, who come from a third country, will have the right of temporary residence if the EU citizen is employed or studying in Estonia, has sufficient legal income to ensure the subsistence of him/herself and the family and has medical insurene. The third country family members of an EU citizen are required to follow the visa requirements for entering Estonia that have been described in the section for Citizens of third countries. Short term stay (see next tab). They can apply for the right of temporary residency in a foreign representation of the Republic of Estonia or by going in person to a service point of the Police and Border Guard Board after arrival in Estonia.

 

ID card

Within a month after the place of residence has been registered and the right to temporary residence has been obtained, an EU citizen must apply for an ID number and an Estonian ID card at the Police and Border Guard Board. The ID number enables you to obtain health insurance through the Estonian Health Insurance Fund when employed by an Estonian organisation and receive social support. The ID card can be used as identification and for giving digital signatures, and it carries the data concerning the right of residence. ID cards can be used for a wide range of electronic services. It also gives you the right to vore in local goverment elections and the European Parliament elections.

 

See also:

Police and Border Guard Board. Right of Residence of family members of EU citizens

Police and Border Guard Board. ID card

Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Estonian Embassies and Representations around the world

Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Foreign representations in Estonia