The Law of Foreigners

Meri Law Firm

One essential goal of our firm is to empower foreigners to effective and reliable legal guidance in Turkey. Many of our legal services hence fall under what we call the law of foreigners, a comprehensive but diffuse ‘system’ of laws and regulations that applies to the legal conditions and relations of foreigners living, working, or operating in Turkey. This is not a uniform legal system that falls under the category of a single branch or code of law. Instead, the law on foreigners constitutes a heterogeneous body of law that is, dependent on the nature of the problem or dispute, subject to different areas of legal expertise; administrative law, property law, foreign investment law, etc..


To this end, we offer our clients guidance within a wide spectrum of legal problems and disputes. These include asylum, residence, employment and citizenship issues, as well as guidance in matters and disputes such as related to marriage, divorce, heritage, real estate property, trade, transportation, or investment. A large junk of these matters are governed by the Code 6458 of the Law on Foreigners and International Protection, Code 5901 of the Law of Nationality or Code 4817 on the Work Permits of Foreigners. Other matters are governed by the bilateral treaties signed between Turkey and other countries, such as is often the cases in foreign investment matters.


Private International Law

In Turkey, many legal problems and disputes that contain a foreign element are subject to Code 5718 on International Private and Procedural Law. The code regulates matters subsumed under the category of private international law, which refers to the legal branch that defines the competent laws and courts in the legal relationships between real and judicial persons of different nationalities. The Code also regulates the procedures governing the recognition and execution of foreign judgments and arbitrary awards.

Both the law of foreigners and the related branch of private international law call for the substantial mastery of the languages of a client, both in order to establish an helpful and trust oriented client-attorney relationship, as well as to have direct access to the laws and regulations of a client’s home country which may govern the legal dispute according to the laws of collision. The law of foreigners and private international law also requires particular expertise in the respective dispute area, and frequently a somewhat  interdisciplinary approach in the guidance and solution of a legal dispute or problem.  It is for these reasons that our team of lawyers and academics have hitherto succeeded to optimize the reliable nature and professional quality of legal services to foreign persons and companies living or operating in Turkey.

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