Travel & Expat Lifestyle Magazine

Moving to Latvia

The Republic of Latvia is a Northern European and Baltic nation. It has a temperate seasonal climate, and its landscape has a lot of forests. Its language, Latvian, is similar to Lithuanian, but not to Estonian. It is a unitary parliamentary republic, with its capital in Riga. It is a member of the EU, NATO and UN. It has one of the highest GDP growth rates in Europe.


Work Permit

To stay in Latvia for over 90 days for work, you are required to obtain a temporary residency permit. You are required to hold a valid health insurance policy. This visa entitles you to travel freely within other Schengen states. You should apply at your nearest Latvian embassy or consulate. Depending on your situation, one of these permits can be issued for a period of 1-5 years. After living in Latvia for 5 years, you can apply for a permanent residency permit.

There are several different types of work permits that would entitle you to reside temporarily in Latvia. Some examples are self-employment, cooperation in scientific work, or a representative for a foreign entity.

One mainstream permit would be the an individual merchant (businessman), or a sole founder of a commercial company registered in the Commercial Register.

A lot of bureaucracy goes along with this. To apply for such a permit, you are required to submit the following documents:

  1. Application form
  2. Photograph
  3. Statement on fluorography or x-ray results
  4. Proof of funds
  5. Residence permission documents
  6. Document confirming state duty payment
  7. Business plan, confirmed by sworn auditor
  8. Documents that show sufficient funds for any proposed projects
  9. Permits, if necessary
  10. Statement of the State Revenue Service about registration as a tax payer
  11. Annual report if a former business plan has been fulfilled
  12. Statement issued by the State Revenue Service about income taxes and their amount
  13. Valid passport

Student Permit

To study in Latvia for over 90 days, you must apply for a temporary residence permit in accordance with your stay.

You are required to submit the following documents:

1.       A definite sample form for a residence permit request

2.       Photograph

3.       Statement on fluorography or x-ray examination results

4.       Valid passport

5.       Proof of funds

6.       Document confirming your place of residence and your right to stay there

7.       Document that shows you have paid duty payment

8.       Proof of enrollment

Moving Pets

To import your pet to Latvia, you must have it microchipped. Cats and dogs are required to have the proper vaccinations before arrival. Both must be vaccinated against rabies. You must also obtain an EU Pet Health Certificate (EC#: 998), which must be filled out by an accredited veterinarian. An International Health Certificate is also necessary. There will probably be other requirements based on your country of departure.

Other Information

Click here for the “Entry and Residence Wizard” for Latvia.

Click here for information on real estate in Latvia.

Click here for a map of Latvia.


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