Moscow_Wolf wrote:Right of Union citizens and their family members to move and reside freely within the Union
Guide on how to get the best out of Directive 2004/38/EC
guide_2004_38_ec_en.pdf (English Version)
guide_2004_38_ec_bg.pdf (Bulgarian Version)
These two PDF Files will give you all the information you need and BULGARIA cannot ignore them as it is EU ruling. You'll find the Bulgarian Consular in Moscow quiet helpful.
I can provide an update on this situation. The two documents that I highlighted for your attention are NOT being interpreted by the Bulgarian's correctly. The main 'issue' I am fighting is that an EU country (in this case Bulgaria) SHOULD issue a visa to a family member (in mine and your case, non EU citizens) expediently and for FREE.
Now, after our marriage in Bulgaria, my Russian wife returned to Moscow to obtain a new visa to allow her to accompany me as my wife in Bulgaria. She still has a one year Type C multi-entry type visa in her passport which allows her to remain here for 90 days from every 180, but the Bulgarian's here in Yambol wouldn't entertain this type of Visa so she flew home to start the process.
Now, the Bulgarians say that they issue Type C visas to family members for free and that from what I have heard, these can be issued within three working days, but they only allow a temporary visit and is what she effectively already has.
No says the Bulgarians, you must have a Type D visa for which they charge me 4,500 Roubles (around 150 Euros at a guess), but this visa can usually take FORTY working days before it is issued as it has to be dealt with in Sofia. The documents I quoted go on to say however, that after getting a Family Member Entry Visa into Bulgaria (type not specified) you then have a limited amount of time to request your Temporary Residence Card and your visa becomes annulled as you can travel in and out of Bulgaria on your Non EU Citizen passport and your Temporary Residence Card.
So, what is the point of the Type D Visa. I assume that Bulgaria wants to make its background checks into whether or not it is a false marriage, whether you're going to be dependent on the state or whatever, BUT it is completely not in line with the EU Directives.
I wrote to the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Sofia in English (I must admit) and copied it to the British Embassy in Sofia too. I have not had any acknowledgement from the Bulgarian Ministry, but I did get a response from the British Embassy even if it wasn't that helpful to my case.
I didn't know about SOLVIT, first time I am hearing of them, but I did find the EU Ombudsmen and have made my case of unfair treatment and not adhering to the spirit of the EU Directives and Agreements. I have had a response and a case number, but I do not expect the EU wheels to turn quick enough to help me, but perhaps my complaint might help others as yourself in the future.
If you already have a form of residence in another EU country as a non EU Citizen then, things are much easier, but we do not. This was the silly part when I inquired about getting a Temporary Residence Permit on my wife's existing Type C visa and they said, 'no we cannot do it unless she already has a residence permit in another EU country'. What difference does it make and every Non EU Citizen has to start the process somewhere.
So, all in all very frustrating and this where not knowing enough of the Bulgarian language is a stumbling block. If I was in the UK, I;d know who to telephone, what questions to ask and if I did not get satisfaction, I would pass the case/complaint straight to my local MP. Here, I'm a bit lost trying to realise my rights under EU Directives and agreements.
As I said in another post, I do not suppose it helps that the Head of the Bulgarian Immigration Department was arrested earlier this month for issuing false passports and residency permits. With Bulgaria's entrance into the Schengen Zone in the next year or two, they need to be squeaky clean, but they also need to interpret the rules correctly.
Hope that helps somewhat.