Immigration and the right to enter Gibraltar are governed by the Immigration Control Act. All individuals registered as having Gibraltarian status or who are British-Dependent Territories citizens by virtue of their connection with Gibraltar are exempt from having to hold any permit or certificate of residence required by the act. Exemption is also granted to Commonwealth citizens employed in Gibraltar in HM Services, HM Government Service or Gibraltar Government Service.
EEA nationals (including workers, students and retired persons) are entitled to enter or remain in Gibraltar if they have an enforceable European Community right to do so. Initially, they may stay in Gibraltar for three months; after which they will be granted a renewable residence permit valid for five years, provided that they have found suitable employment or established a business. People in this category are entitled to bring their immediate family (normally spouse and children) with them. However, family members who are not EEA nationals require an EEA family permit. Exceptions to the general entitlement of EEA nationals, however, are the following:
Other nationals require both work permits (see Section 4.2 below) and residence permits. Any individual not having the right to reside in Gibraltar may be refused admission (or after admission be required to leave) in the interests of public policy, security or health.
Residence permits may be granted at the governor’s discretion to non-EEA nationals who do not have a work permit if the governor is satisfied that the applicants are of good character and that granting them residency is in the interest of Gibraltar. Non -EEA nationals who have obtained Qualifying (Category 2) Individual tax status (commonly known as a high-net-worth individual) (see Section 5.11.3) are likely to obtain residence permits on this basis.
UK Citizens can, also at the governor’s discretion, be granted a certificate of permanent residence provided they are of good character and are likely to be an asset to the community.
If an EEA national wishes to retire in Gibraltar, the person must prove to the satisfaction of the authorities that they have:
Note: Under a reciprocal agreement between the UK and Gibraltar, eligible UK nationals retiring in Gibraltar may be entitled to free medical services in Gibraltar.
Only citizens of countries that appear on the EU Common Visa List require visas to enter Gibraltar. Approximately 100 countries appear on this visa list, mainly including those in Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe. A complete list of these countries may be obtained from the passport office. Normally, visa applications are handled by the UK Embassy in the applicant’s home country. Visa requirements are similar to those in the UK.
Applications are reviewed on the basis of intention of the visit and whether the applicant has proof of return or onward travel out of Gibraltar. In particular, any practical difficulties that could arise if forcible deportation became necessary are taken into consideration.