Permanent Residence

A permanent residence permit may be issued to a foreigner who is a recognized refugee and has been the holder of a formal recognition refugee status permit (section 24) for five continuous years in South Africa.

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Specific Requirements

  • Proof of five year continuous refugee status in South Africa
  • Certification from the Standing Committee for Refugee Affairs that the applicant will remain a refugee indefinitely

General Requirements

  • Application: form DHA-947
  • Prescribed Home Affairs fee
  • Copy of the applicant’s birth certificate
  • Photograph and fingerprints [not applicable to applicants under the age of 16]
  • Yellow fever vaccination certificate where required
  • Police clearance certificate, not older than six months at the time of submission, for each country where the applicant resided for 12 months or longer after attaining the age of 18 years, in respect of the applicant’s criminal records or character
  • Original medical certificate: form BI-811
  • Original radiological report: form BI-806 [not applicable to pregnant women and applicants under the age of 12]
  • Documents relating to dependent child(ren) accompanying the applicant or joining the applicant in South Africa: proof of parental responsibilities and rights or written consent in the form of an affidavit from the other parent or legal guardian, as the case may be
  • Documents relating to the spouse accompanying the applicant or joining the applicant in South Africa: copy of the marriage certificate or proof of a spousal relationship
  • Unabridged birth certificate in respect of each dependent child
  • Deed poll in the case of an applicant who has changed his or her name, surname or sex
SA Id Book

Unavailable documents

If certain documents, originating from the country fled by the applicant, are not available, a sworn affidavit must be provided.


The documents originating from abroad must be in originals or copies apostiled by the issuing authority of the country of origin and, if need be, translated into English by a sworn translator.