What Social Rights Do the Foreigners Living in Turkey possess?

As mobility of labour, capital and information go up across the World, people also pursue job opportunities in different countries. Turkey is also seen as an advantageous location for Turkey.

Well then what the social rights do the foreigners living in Turkey possess? In this writing, we will deal with basic social rights that the people living in Turkey have got.

What Acts protects Social Security Rights of Foreigners?

In the Constitution of Republic of Turkey, the provision “Everyone has social security right” is included. This expression also contains the social rights of foreigners.

Social Insurance and General Health Insurance Law also handles this matter. According to the law;

“With the exception of those with whom international social security contract is made based on principle of reciprocity, out of foreign persons, those who work with service contract are also assumed insured according to sub-clause 4/a (SSK).”

What is Bilateral Social Security Contract ?

Bilateral or multilateral social security contracts arrange social security rights and liabilities of signatory country citizens in signatory countries. If such contract exists between two countries, it means that citizens of both countries have also got many social security rights.

As of 2016, the countries that Turkey has signed bilateral social security contract with them are:

Bilateral Social Agreements signed by Turkey
Germany Luxemburg Libya
France Macedonia Azerbaijan
Belgium Norway KKTC
Denmark Romania Albania
Austria Canada Bosnia- Herzegovina
Swiss Georgia Czech Republic
Sweden Quebec Serbia
Netherland Croatia South Korea
England Slovakia Montenegro

How does this Contract affect Insurance State of the Foreigners in Turkey?

The basic rule relevant to foreigners is to inform Social Security Institution about their start to work. However, if the citizens of countries which are signatory of bilateral social security contract are insured in the country where they come from, they are assumed insured in their countries not in Turkey within the period stated in contract

For instance this duration is 24 months for Georgia citizens. This period may be extended till 60 months. This period is 24 months for KKTC citizens too and time is extended on the basis of the agreement between two countries.

That is to say, even though these persons work in Turkey, they are not regarded as insured.

Can Foreign Persons Benefit from Health Rights?

Foreign persons have to apply personally to the closest social security centre so as to be benefited from general health insurance. In order to lodge this application across Turkey, social security centre more than 600 exists.

  • The foreigners who have obtained residence permit in Turkey,
  • The foreigners who have no insurance in a country outside Turkey,
  • The citizens of foreign country who have been living for a time longer than one year in Turkey and make application following this period may take advantage of general health insurance.

Of a foreign persons who is entitled to general health insurance

  • His spouse,
  • His child (or children) who does not/do not turn age 18
  • His children younger than 20 and not married if he study in high school or an equivalent institution,
  • His children younger than 25 and not married if he study in higher education,
  • His children whose disability is detected and not married regardless of their age,
  • His father and mother determined according to the criteria identified by the Institution that their subsistence is provided by foreign person can benefit from health services.

Can Foreigners be benefited from Unemployment Insurance?

Citizens of the countries that Republic of Turkey has signed social security agreement based on principle of reciprocity subject to unemployment insurance in case they work in Turkey.

Have Foreigners got the Rights like Paid Leave, Severance Pay, etc.?

The foreigners employed in Turkey have also rights like working hour, overtime, paid and unpaid leave, severance pay, collective bargaining right, execution and termination of service contract, etc. They have the same right with Turkish citizens on this matter.

Which Professions can be performed by Foreigners ?

As of 2016, performance of the following professions in Turkey by foreigners is prohibited:

  • Dentistry, midwifery and nursing
  • Pharmaceutics
  • Veterinary medicine
  • To be managing director in private hospitals
  • Captainship within the borders of territorial waters, export of fish, oyster, mussel, sponge, pearl, coral, etc., diving, business of seeking, guidance, mechanic, clerk, crew.
  • attorneyship
  • notariate
  • customs consultancy
  • security officer in private or public institution

The foreigners are free to perform the professions not included in this list.

Can Foreigners be retired from Turkey?

Yes, foreigners can be retired from Turkey. Which conditions a Turkish citizen carry to retire, a foreigner should also carry the same conditions.

Retirement age for a foreign woman living in Turkey is 58, and 60 for man.

Workers should complete premium day of 7200, those who are independent and work in public, Premium day of 9000.

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