On Wednesday, 5 April, the Saeima supported in the second and final reading urgent amendments to the Immigration Law that provide for extending the term of residence permits and the term of examining residence permit applications for persons who have successfully passed the examination of the proficiency in the official language according to the requirements laid down in the law or who have attempted to pass the official language examination at least once before and are set to retake it.
The amendments were necessary so that persons who wish to remain in Latvia would have enough time to submit the necessary documents for requesting the status of a permanent European Union (EU) resident and could continue staying in Latvia while their submissions are examined.
Previously, representatives of the Ministry of the Interior explained to MPs that the amendments do not conceptually change the previously adopted procedure of receiving residence permits; rather, they are crucial for the responsible authorities to make well-reasoned decisions.
The amendments provide that applications for permanent EU resident status must be examined by the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs within one year of receiving them.
In addition, the Ministry of Education and Science informed that so far approximately 8000 persons had applied for the examination of the proficiency in the official language and were planning to take it by 31 July, making up half of the total number of persons who must take the examination. A repeat examination may be taken not earlier than one month after the first examination.
Saeima Press Service