2. “EU Blue Card” residence and work permit
With amendments to the Bulgarian laws and regulations, which took place in January and June 2011, additional ground for work and stay of Foreigners was introduced in the local legislation, namely employment under a labour contract for the purpose of highly-qualified work.
Major precondition for obtaining by a Foreigner of a permit for work and residence type “EU Blue Card” is that the Foreigner shall have a university degree of education obtained on the basis of at least three-year educational course.
In order to apply for an EU Blue Card, the Foreigner should first obtain a permit for exercising of highly-qualified employment and a long-stay visa. The permit for exercising of highly-qualified employment is issued by the Bulgarian Employment Agency within fifteen calendar days following the submission of the relevant application and required documents. The procedure for obtaining the permit from the Employment Agency should be initiated by the local employer of the Foreigner and the employer should pay the due state fee.
For the purpose of obtaining of an EU Blue Card the Foreigner must file an application to the Migration Directorate at the Ministry of Internal Affairs not later than 7 days prior to expiration of the term of the long-stay visa. The Foreigner should enclose to the application (i) a copy of his/her valid international passport, including the issued long-stay visa, and (ii) documents evidencing that the Foreigner is health insured in compliance with the Bulgarian legislation. The permit for exercising of highly-qualified employment is ex officio provided to the Migration Directorate by the Employment Agency. Applications for issuance of an EU Blue Card are considered and reviewed within 7 days of their submission.
EU Blue cards are issued for a period of up to one year and can be renewed for further one-year periods without limitation, as long as the grounds for their issuance still exist.
According to the law, the family members of a Foreigner, who has been granted an “EU Blue Card”, are entitled to obtain extended residence permits in the Republic of Bulgaria for a period equal to the term of residence permitted to the holder of the “EU Blue Card”, if certain conditions of the law are me