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Obtaining Bulgarian citizenship is the most important step for those who dream of connecting their lives with Bulgaria for a long time. There are three main reasons for obtaining the status of a citizen in the Republic. These are: ethnicity, investment and naturalization in Bulgaria. In addition, outstanding personalities who have significant services to the state can become citizens of the country.
Citizenship in Bulgaria by naturalization


Obtaining Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization is the easiest and most affordable way, requiring neither Bulgarian origin, nor significant investments, nor any special services. The submission of documentation for obtaining Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization is possible after five years of holding the status of "permanent residence" or "long-term residence" in the Republic of Bulgaria. And these statuses , in turn, are obtained after five years of residence in the status of temporary residence (temporary residence permit). Thus, in order to be able to apply for Bulgarian citizenship, one must live in the country for at least 10 years. Of course, this does not mean that it is necessary to sit in Bulgaria without getting out: the law allows travel outside the territory of the state during this time.
Who can apply for Bulgarian citizenship?
What requirements must be met in order to obtain Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization? At the time of submission of the package of documents, you must meet the following requirements:
  • Be of legal age;
  • Live in Bulgaria for at least 5 years in the status of permanent residence (have a permit for permanent residence);
  • Have no criminal record in Bulgaria;
  • Have an income or profession that will allow you to live in the country;
  • Know the Bulgarian language;
  • Do not have citizenship / be ready to give up your existing citizenship by the time you receive Bulgarian.
  • In some cases, you can apply even after 36 months of residence in the country in the status of permanent residence. This applies to those who:
  • Has been officially married to a Bulgarian citizen for over 3 years;
  • Was born on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria;
  • Received permanent residence status before reaching 18 years of age.


To obtain Bulgarian citizenship, you must submit a package of documents to the Ministry of Justice in Sofia. This can be done in person, having come to the Ministry, documents are accepted every weekday from 9 to 17-30, lunch break from 12-30 to 13-30. You can reserve the time for submission of documents on the Ministry's website at: read here.

Important: all documentation must be translated into Bulgarian. When submitting an application, candidates are interviewed in Bulgarian with an employee of the Ministry. Only those applications to which all of the above documents are attached are registered. Those who are married to a citizen of the country must also provide a document from the local municipality confirming the existence of a legal marriage for at least three years by the time of application.
The list of documents that must be provided can be found on the website of the Ministry of Justice of Bulgaria:
  • Application in Bulgarian according to the sample;
  • A copy of the birth certificate (certified by a notary and legalized);
  • Permanent residence permit (date of issue no earlier than 5 years before the submission of documents for obtaining citizenship);
  • A document on the absence of a criminal record in the country of which the candidate is a citizen. In case of permanent residence in Bulgaria or in any other country, a police clearance certificate is also issued from the local competent authorities
  • Certificate from the Bulgarian prosecutor's office about the absence of open proceedings against the candidate;
  • A copy of the diploma of education received in Bulgaria or a certificate of proficiency in the Bulgarian language from the Ministry of Education and Science;
  • Certificate from work, confirming the existence of an employment contract, or a document from the tax office on the declared income;
  • Certificates of contributions made for pension / medical security or pension certificate;
  • Certificate issued by the medical commission at the place of residence confirming the absence of diseases listed in the Law on Health Care;
  • A document confirming the change of the name or surname, if any, as well as a document confirming the identity of persons with different names
  • One current photo;
  • Autobiography;
  • Copy of identity card;
  • A document confirming that the applicant for Bulgarian citizenship has been released from previous citizenship. In the absence of such a document, it must be provided within 3 years after the approval of the candidacy for obtaining Bulgarian citizenship;
  • Document confirming the 100 lev tax paid to the account of the Ministry of Justice.


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