Citizenship and Residency
Procedure for Acquiring Citizenship
According to article 13 of the Law “On the citizenship of the Republic of Armenia”, any legally competent person, who is 18 years of age, is not an RA citizen, resides in a foreign country or lawfully resides in the Republic of Armenia, may apply for acquiring RA citizenship, if he/she
- has been lawfully residing on the territory of the Republic of Armenia for the preceding 3 years;
- is able to explain himself/herself in the Armenian language;
- is familiar with the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia.
A person who is not a Republic of Armenia citizen can be granted Republic of Armenia citizenship without the above-mentioned 1st and 2nd conditions if he/she:
- is married to a citizen of the Republic of Armenia and the marriage has been officially registered for past two years preceding the date of submission of the application, and he/she has resided in the Republic of Armenia for at least 365 days during this two-year period or has a child who holds Republic of Armenia citizenship (see the section “Citizenship by Marriage” for further information);
- has parents, or at least one parent that has held citizenship of the Republic of Armenia in the past or was born on the territory of the Republic of Armenia and had applied for citizenship of the Republic of Armenia within 3 years of attaining the age of 18;
- has renounced citizenship of the Republic of Armenia of his/her own accord after 1 January 1995.
- ethnic Armenians
Ways to Acquire Citizenship
Passports, ID Documents
After the President of the Republic signs your citizenship decree you can apply for an Armenian passport and an identification card. Currently, you have the option of applying for a regular passport or a biometric passport.
If you were issued a regular passport you can later apply for and get a biometric passport and thus have two valid passports. Please note that the biometric passport also shows your "place of residence." If you do not wish your country of residence to appear on your passport it is better to go with the regular passport.
You may also get an identification document (ID card), which is issued in the form of a plastic card. This document also shows your social security number (public services number).
Recognition of Armenian Citizenship
The following persons are recognized as the citizens of the Republic of Armenia:
- Citizens of the former Arm. SSR permanently residing on the territory of the Republic of Armenia, who until the 13 July 1995 has not acquired the citizenship of the another state or has rejected that citizenship;
- Stateless persons or former citizens of other USSR republics who are not foreign citizens permanently residing in the RA;
- The former citizens of the Armenian SSR, who live outside the Republic of Armenia and have not acquire the citizenship of another country.
Temporary or Permanent Residency
Eligibility Requirements for Temporary Residence Card
Temporary residence cards are issued for a period of up to one year with a possibility of extension every year.
Temporary residency cards are granted to people who:
- study in Armenia
- have a work permit in Armenia
- is a wife/husband, parent or child of a foreign citizen who is a holds a Temporary Resident Card
- is a wife/husband, parent, child or relative (brother, sister, grandparent, grandchildren) of an Armenian citizen or of a foreign citizen holding a Special Passport of Armenia
- conducts business activities in Armenia
- is an Armenian national
- in other cases prescribed by law
The applicant must apply for the extension at least 30 days before the expiration of the Temporary Resident Card.
Eligibility Requirements for Permanent Residence Card
Permanent residence cards are issued for a period of 5 years with a possibility of extension every 5 years.
Permanent Resident Cards are issued to a foreign citizen who:
- is wife/husband or relative (brother, sister, grandparent, grandchildren) of an Armenian citizen or of a foreign citizen holding a Special Passport of Armenia, has adequate means of accommodation or property in Armenia and also has legally lived in Armenia for 3 years before applying for a Permanent Resident Card
- conducts business activities in Armenia
- is an Armenian national
To extend the Permanent Resident Card, the applicant must apply at least 30 days before the expiration of the card.
- 3 color photos - 35 x 45 mm
- passport, copy of the passport, the notarized Armenian translation of the passport
- documents supporting the conditions of applying for the residence permit in Armenia – baptism certificate OR immediate family member’s (parent, spouse, children) Armenian passport copy
- medical certificate
- receipt of payment of the fee
OVIR coordinates the issue of granting a temporary or permanent residence permit with the National Security Service by sending in written or electronic forms of copies of your passport and application form.
Where to apply?
The Passport and Visa Department of the RA Police
Address: 17/10 Building, 4th District, Davtashen, Yerevan 0054
Working hours: Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu 09։00-17։00, break 14։00-15։00
Fri 10։00-17։00, break 14։00-15։00
The decision on granting temporary or permanent residence status and extending a residence permit is made by the Passport and Visa Department of the RA Police (OVIR) within 30 days after receiving the required documents.
Special Residency (Special Passport)
Before Armenia legalized dual citizenship by Constitution in 2005 and by amendments in the Citizenship Law in 2007 special passports were very common among ethnic Armenians who did not want to renounce their current citizenship. But even now many foreign nationals prefer to apply for special residency instead of becoming full-fledged citizens.
The special residence permit (passport) has a validity of ten years and can be extended indefinitely for 10-year increments. It looks different from temporary/permanent residence permits as it is issued in the form a passport, not a card. It allows its holder to travel freely to and from Armenia without a visa, to live, work, study, do business and engage in any other lawful activity in Armenia without work permits or other papers. One notable advantage of the special passport is that its holder can own agricultural and other land directly in his/her own name, without the need to establish a legal entity.
In practice special passports are issued to foreign nationals of Armenian origin, i.e. ethnic Armenians. In exceptional cases special passports can be issued to non-Armenians who are engaged in economic or cultural activities in Armenia. Children under 16 can also get special passports.
The time required to obtain a special passport is around 60 days. In order to receive a special residence status, you can submit the application and required documents to the Passport and Visa Department of RA Police (OVIR), and to the Embassy or Consular office in foreign countries.
The list of documents submitted with the application for obtaining a special residence permit in the Republic of Armenia is established by the Government of the Republic of Armenia (in Armenian, see Annex 1)
Fees & Expenses
In addition to the official government fees detailed below you are likely to incur legal fees, translation and notarization fees, and other expenses that may be specific to your case.
|Citizenship Application||1,000 AMD|
|Regular Passport||1,000 AMD|
|Biometric Passport||25,000 AMD|
|ID Card||3,000 AMD|
|Address Registration||1,000 AMD|
|Fast Passport or ID Card Issuance||Next business day||20,000 AMD|
|Three business days||10,000 AMD|
|Five business days||5,000 AMD|
|Temporary residence permit and temporary residence card, as well as registration number||105,000 AMD|
|Permanent residence permit and permanent residence card, as well as registration number||140,000 AMD|
|Special residence permit and special passport, as well as registration number||150,000 AMD|
|Extension of the status of temporary admission||105,000 AMD|
|Replacement of permanent residence card||20,000 AMD|
|Restore the residence card of foreign citizens who have permanent and temporary residence permits||12,000 AMD|
|Issue a new special passport instead of a lost one||75,000 AMD|
If you are an RA citizen, who resides in Armenia, and has a child who is 6 years old or younger, they can be granted an RA passport with a validity of 3 years.
If your child is between 6 years to 16 years of age, they will be granted an RA passport valid for 5 years up to the point when they reach the age of 18.
If your child is 16 years or older, the RA citizen passport will be issued for a period of 10 years.
Male citizens under 16 years of age, as well as those who have reached pre-conscription age (16), are provided with a passport until they reach the draft age (18). When they reach the age of 18, the passport will not be valid for travel until compulsory military service is completed.
A child under 16 years of age is issued a passport on the basis of an application from one of the child's parents. If the parent cannot personally submit the application, the authenticity of the child's signature on the submitted application must be notarized.
A child under 16 years of age cannot be provided with a passport on the basis of an application from one parent, if the parent with whom the child legally resides with submits a written statement in advance to the RA Police stating their disagreement with the issuance of the passport. The application must be accompanied by a notarized copy of the agreement on determining the child's place of residence or a copy of the judicial decision.
Starting from 2018 it is possible for an ethnic Armenian child to acquire Armenian citizenship even if none of their parents are Armenian citizens, if the child has settlement in the Republic of Armenia (by registration in the State population register) (“The law on the citizenship of the Republic of Armenia”, Article 12.1,).
After your citizenship is granted your spouse, parent, son, daughter, brother, sister, grandparent or grandchild can get a temporary (one-year) residence permit. A permanent (five-year) residence permit may also be available after three years of residence in Armenia. In certain cases a special (10-year) residence status may be granted (see the section "Special Residency").