Stay permit

One of at least 100 different types of permits Israel requires Palestinians with Palestinian Authority (Green) IDs to obtain to access Jerusalem. Specifically, this permit is for nonresident spouses of Palestinian permanent residents with Israeli IDs who live within the municipal boundaries of the city. Because family unification was banned in 2000, Israel introduced the stay permit in 2006 as a means of granting occasional “exceptions” to the ban, allowing such “nonresident spouses” to “stay” in the city legally with their spouses for periods longer than those allowed by other entry permits. Control over its issuance and approval lies entirely with the COGAT, and the application process is long, involved, and unpredictable. Only men aged over 35, women aged over 25, and children aged over 13 may apply.

If granted, the stay permit allows the spouse or child without an Israeli permanent-resident ID to live legally within the city boundaries for a defined period of time, usually a year or two. The applicant must reapply to renew the permit after that time. The holder of this permit only has the right to stay, sleep, and work (on a working permit similar to foreign workers) in Jerusalem or Israel. Holders of this permit do not have any civil and social rights in Jerusalem or Israel. For example, they cannot drive a car, open a bank account, or obtain healthcare. (Some limited numbers of exceptions were made mainly for humanitarian reasons.)

The COGAT can revoke the stay permit for an individual or for all holders of such permits at any time without notice.