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15 April 2020
Third-country nationals – single permit applications
Third-country nationals – non-work-related applications
UK nationals and Brexit
EU, EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members
In light of COVID-19, Identity Malta's Department of Citizenship and Expatriates has released a number of measures which seek to assist third-country nationals and EU, EEA and Swiss nationals currently residing in Malta with their respective obligations in terms of the Immigration Act and its subsidiary legislation.
In addition to these changes, the Central Visa Unit has implemented more rigid measures in light of the travel restrictions imposed.
This article provides an overview of the salient changes implemented by the Department of Citizenship and Expatriates and the Central Visa Unit.
Renewals of single permit applications expiring between 13 March 2020 and 31 March 2020 are to be submitted by employers through Identity Malta's online platform, subject to certain exceptions.
At present, Identity Malta is not accepting any new 'still abroad' single permit applications, except for medical professionals (including personal home-based carers) and highly skilled individuals (ie, key employee initiative applications). However, third-country nationals already legally residing in Malta and applying for a change-in-job or change-in-employer application may still proceed to do so, even if they are not medical professional or key employee initiative applicants (subject to submitting the application within the required timeframe from termination, if applicable).
Until further notice, Identity Malta will issue no decisions on single permit applications where the applicant is still overseas. Accordingly, if individuals are waiting for a decision on a still abroad single permit application, no formal communication will be received from Identity Malta for the foreseeable future; thus, the employment process cannot be finalised.
Third-country nationals employed as live-in carers and healthcare professionals, whose single permits are set to expire, may temporarily extend their single permit for three months by emailing 'firstname.lastname@example.org'. Applicants will receive an email from Identity Malta confirming the extension of the single permit.
Third-country nationals who are currently residing in Malta on the basis of an interim permit (the so-called 'blue paper') may extend their interim permit by emailing 'email@example.com'. A confirmation of the extension must be received by the applicant. Applicants who visit the Department of Citizenship and Expatriates to extend their interim permit will not be served.
Third-country nationals who received an approval-in-principle letter and entered Malta must abide by the mandatory quarantine rules and cannot visit the Department of Citizenship and Expatriates earlier than 14 days following the date of entry into the country.
Third-country nationals who must apply for a visa or residence permit (for reasons other than employment – such as family member applications, study applications and temporary residence permits) may submit a new or renewal residence permit application online by emailing 'firstname.lastname@example.org'.
In light of Brexit, the Department of Citizenship and Expatriates was currently in the process of issuing new residence cards to UK nationals already residing in Malta; however, this process is being put on hold until further notice. Having said that, UK nationals who have already received notification of their appointment must still attend the appointment on the date stipulated therein. EU residence cards will remain valid in the hands of UK nationals until such time that a new residence card is issued.
EU, EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members who must visit Identity Malta in order to apply for residence or renew their current residence card must abide by the mandatory quarantine rules, if applicable.
EU, EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members may submit a residence card renewal application even after expiration of their residence card. However, renewal applications may now be temporarily renewed online and by emailing the EU section at the Department of Citizenship and Expatriates.
EU, EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members who have been residing in Malta for three months may submit a temporary residence permit application online by emailing the EU section at the Department of Citizenship and Expatriates.
The Customer Care Team at Identity Malta is no longer accepting applicants in person and all queries should be made via telephone or email.
The Central Visa Unit is currently only considering visa applications in exceptional circumstances, including visa applications for EU family members and medical professionals.
As of 6 April 2020, the Central Visa Unit will only see customers who have an appointment.(1)
For further information on this topic please contact Rebecca Diacono at Fenech & Fenech Advocates by telephone (+356 2124 1232) or email (email@example.com). The Fenech & Fenech website can be accessed at www.fenechlaw.com.
(1) To book an appointment, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The materials contained on this website are for general information purposes only and are subject to the disclaimer.
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