Getting a spouse sponsored KITAS can turn out to be a part-time job for you in Indonesia. In this article, we will give you an overview of the process of acquiring a spouse sponsored marriage KITAS in Indonesia.
Indonesian spouse visa requirements
In order for you to apply for this visa, sometimes referred to as the family or marriage KITAS, you have to be married to an Indonesian citizen and have an official marriage certificate acknowledged by the Indonesian government.
If you get married abroad, you need to have a CNI (Certificate of No Impediment to marriage). In that case, the CNI and the marriage certificate have to be translated into Indonesian and legalized in Indonesia.
How to get a marriage KITAS in Indonesia
Step 1: Apply for a limited stay permit (VITAS) approval
In order to receive a spouse sponsored limited stay permit (KITAS), you need to enter the country with a limited stay visa (VITAS). Before you can obtain a VITAS, you need to apply for a VITAS approval, known as a telex.
The Indonesian Immigration Office in Jakarta issues VITAS approvals and telexes them to Indonesian embassies abroad. Straits Partners can apply for a limited stay permit in Jakarta on your behalf.
However, if you already are in Indonesia with a Social Visit Visa, you need to convert that visa into a VITAS before you can obtain a KITAS. We can help you on this matter as well.
It takes 5 working days to process VITAS approval applications.
Documents required for a VITAS approval
Copy of Family Card and ID Card of the Indonesian spouse (status as “married”)
Latest bank statement copy of the Indonesian spouse
Sponsor letter (drafted by Straits Partners)
Step 2: Collect your limited stay visa (VITAS) at the Indonesian embassy
Once the application is accepted, VITAS approval will be telexed to the corresponding Indonesian embassy abroad. They will issue you a limited stay visa (VITAS) based on the application approval.
You must convert VITAS into a limited stay permit (KITAS) as soon as you have entered Indonesia.
Step 3: Convert VITAS into a limited stay permit (KITAS)
After you have arrived in Indonesia with a VITAS, you have seven days (yes, only 7) to convert it into a limited stay permit (KITAS). We will stress this again – if you go past that seven-day mark, you lose the possibility to convert your VITAS into a KITAS.
You should not go abroad before converting the VITAS into a KITAS. If you leave Indonesia, your VITAS will no longer be valid. However, with a KITAS you can exit and re-enter Indonesia since multiple exit and re-entry permit (MERP) comes together with it.
KITAS, which is now in the form of an online record instead of a card, allows you to stay in Indonesia. Unfortunately, you will not be able to work with this visa. Once you find employment in Indonesia, your employer must apply for a work and stay permit for you.
This will be additional to the spouse sponsored KITAS as this cannot be converted into a work permit.
Documents required for a KITAS application (when converting VITAS)
Application form (prepared by Straits Partners)
Physical presence at immigration for biometric data processing
When using Straits Partners’s service, this will be the only time you have to go to the immigration office. We will take care of the rest of the paperwork as well as the legwork.
The acquisition of a marriage KITAS can take up to 8 working days after you return to Indonesia and it is valid for one year. However, you can renew it yearly. The application for the extension must be launched at least 30 days before the expiry.
Step 4: Civil registration and police reporting
Every foreigner who has a KITAS sponsored by an Indonesian spouse has to register themselves under civil administration department. The registration must be done in 14 days after the issuance of KITAS.
After civil registration you will obtain:
Certificate of Family Formation of Temporary Residents (SKSKPS)
Police Report Certificate (STM)
Step 5: Convert KITAS into a permanent stay permit (KITAP)
After two years of marriage with your Indonesian spouse, you can apply for a permanent residence visa (KITAP). This means that if you have already been married for two years, you can convert your KITAS immediately.
Benefits of having a KITAP:
Valid for 5 years, no yearly hassle
MERP (multiple exit/re-entry permit)
SKLD, national police registration card (valid for 5 years)
KTP, Indonesian Identity card (valid for 5 years)
SIM, Indonesian driver’s license (valid for 5 years)
KITAP also allows you to work as a sole entrepreneur in Indonesia, as it is guaranteed under Indonesian Immigration Law No. 6 2011, Article 61. You can be an adviser or a consultant, for example.
However, even with a KITAP you need to renew your residency every 5 years. Unfortunately, only Indonesian citizenship will not require you to renew your immigration status.
What happens in the case of a divorce?
When your marriage has lasted for 10 years, it will no longer influence your ability to stay in the country with your KITAP. Meaning that if you get divorced after a decade of marriage – we do not think that is the magic number when you get tired of your spouse – but according to the law, you can stay in Indonesia regardless of your marital status.
False and outdated information
In order to provide you the best and most up-to-date information on these visas, we have checked all the recent changes in legislation for this article. Even though immigration officers have a tendency to lag behind everyone else when it comes to being aware of these laws, they have to follow them once demonstrated on paper.
Also, information that was at some point extremely useful on forum sites becomes outdated and therefore misleading.
Myth #1: You do not need to have a KITAS for a certain time before you can apply for a KITAP
This is the first misconception regarding the spouse sponsored KITAP. If the sponsor is your spouse, your marriage has to be valid for at least two years before you can apply for a KITAP.
Myth #2: You have to be at least 55 years old
The second misconception is that only people at the age of 55 and older are applicable for this visa. You have to be 55 to apply for the retirement visa, not for a marriage KITAS.
Myth #3: You have to wait 4 months to convert Social Visa into a KITAS
Probably the most persistent mistake made by immigration offices all over Indonesia regarding KITAS is thinking that you have to wait four months before converting the social visit visa to a KITAS. They simply don’t seem to know about the 2005 amendment to the law and are going by a law from 1994.
Officers constantly overlook amendments and when this happens, you just have to nudge them along by showing them the relevant law. Things always move more smoothly when you use patience and respect when dealing with immigration authorities. Unfortunately, they can require a lot of this valuable resource.
Obtaining a marriage KITAS can be a stressful and time-consuming process. Especially when regulations in Indonesia have a tendency to change quite often.
Fortunately, Straits Partners can help you on this matter. Read more about visas and work permits in Indonesia or Feel free to reach out to us at [email protected]