Naomi Mehmet & Partners Law Firm

Temporary immigration amnesty

On 15th August 2016, the Government introduced a temporary amnesty for people who have accrued immigration fines as a result of overstaying their tourist visa, residency permit or work/business permit. Under The Aliens and Immigration Law, anyone who overstays their tourist visa, residency or work/business permit is liable to a fine based on the monthly minimum wage calculated on a daily basis for each day of the overstay. Those who leave the country and are unable to pay this fine are currently prevented from re-entering the country.

Under the amnesty those who have overstayed their visa can, within 3 months of the amnesty coming into force, leave the country and, upon departure, pay one month’s minimum wage by way of a fine. Any other accrued fines over and above the one month’s minimum wage will then be waived. Those who wish to take advantage of the amnesty and pay the one-off fine without leaving the country can apply to the Immigration Office for a 45 day tourist visa to be given to them.

Those who had already left the country before the amnesty came into force can return to the country within 3 months of the amnesty coming into force and, on arrival, can make payment of the one month minimum wage by way of fine.

Those who have previously been deported from the TRNC for overstaying their visa must apply to an overseas TRNC Representative Office so that it can be determined whether they are eligible for the amnesty. If so, they must enter the TRNC within 3 months of the decision on eligibility and, on arrival, must pay the fine of one month’s minimum wage.

Further information can be obtained from the Immigration Office in Nicosia.