How to apply for a national ID card in Croatia - Full Guide

updated on
May 21, 2023
How to apply for a national ID card in Croatia - Full Guide

Are you planning to apply for your national identification card for the first time and are wondering where to begin?

As the law requires, every person above 18 years in the country must have a national ID card.

Well, before we delve into this topic, it is crucial to understand that this information is for Croatian citizens. If you are not yet a citizen of the country and require an ID card, you must first apply for permanent residence n Croatia.

What is An Electronic ID Card?

In August 2021, Croatia implemented the new electronic national ID cards (second generation). These cards have biometric identifiers that check the face and fingerprints. The e-Card has an electronic chip that is built-in with two different certificates that are electronically configured. They are:

• The Identification Certificate: This confirms the user's identity and electronic use of services. For example, you can use the card for the e-Gradani website application.

• The Signature Certificate: This certificate confirms your signature. Users can use them to verify and sign their online documents. It is a special signature for each person.

As a Croatian national, it is important to note that these electronic cards will be valid for five years from the time of issue. However, if one is above 70 years by the time they acquire the card, it will be valid for four decades.

Who Is Eligible to Apply for the National ID Card?

As long as you have Croatian citizenship, you can get the ID card. Even if you don't have a residence in the country and live outside Croatia, you can still get the card.

If you don't live in the country but have citizenship, you can always apply for the card using your foreign details and address. Nevertheless, it is important to note that this card will not prove your residence.

People with the age of 16 that have been allowed to marry by the court in non-litigation and reside in the Republic of Croatia, must carry the national identity card.

Where Can You Apply for an ID Card?

To apply for these cards, you must visit the administrative police station proximal to your permanent residential address or your temporary address in Croatia. It is crucial to note that embassies and consulates are not allowed to give these ID cards

In Croatia, you can have two addresses without any legal implications.

Here is how:

• Your permanent address (Prebivaliste): Where the government sends you communication

• Your temporary or occasional address (Boraviste): where you live for three or more

• Where you stay when schooling

• Where you stay when abroad

• Where you stay when working in a new city

When you have two addresses, you must register both of them with the government. Nevertheless, most people only register their permanent address.

For Croatian citizens living abroad, they can go to any police station in the country for the applications.

How to Apply for an Identification Card in Croatia

1. Collecting the Documentation

As you apply for an osobna, you should begin with getting all the required documents. These are the documents you need to take to your selected police station.

2. The proof of payment

The required fees for the processes

• Regular procedure – 100kuna

• Accelerated procedure – 195 kuna

• Urgent procedure – 500 kuna

• Persons over 70 – 70kuna

It is crucial to understand that these procedures take different timelines. The more money you pay, the faster your ID card is processed.

Another crucial thing to note is that the ID cards for children and persons under 18 are free if they use the regular process and show proof of residence in the country.

Payments are made through the post office, FINA, a commercial bank or via internet banking to the account of the state budget of the Republic of Croatia, 

IBAN number: HR1210010051863000160 

with an indication for an identity card according to model HR65 7005-442-OIB (the OIB Croatian Identification Number of the person for whom the identity card is being made is indicated).

3. Proof of identity

When applying for your ID, you must bring all the required documents to prove your identity.

They include:

• The old ID card

• Other legal documents with a picture

• Statement from parents (for children without ID)

4. A Good Photo

The colored photo must be 3, 5 cm times 4, 5 cm. In most cases, you will find photo shops close to the police station where you can pick up these photos for approximately 100kuna. When taking the photo, you must be clear that it is for osobna iskaznica. For those who have already received their Croatian biometric passports in the last half-decade, you do not have to include your photo. This is because the government will take it from the systems. However, if your looks have changed, you will need a new photo.

5. A Signed Agreement

When applying for the ID card, you will get a contract to sign. This is often an agreement on the certification services. As a first-time applicant who might be confused about it, you should know that this is a standard procedure, and you shouldn't have to go elsewhere.

6. Proof of Croatian Citizenship or a Birth Certificate

If you do not have an old Croatian ID card or a passport, you must come with a birth certificate or proof of citizenship. It is also required if you are not entered into the Croatian birth records.

7. Your Birth Certificate or Proof of Citizenship (Old ID Card)

Do you have a Croatian ID card that has expired? Well, you have to bring this card with you. At the police station, it will be cancelled and returned to you.

8. Visit MUP

To apply for these cards, you must visit your MUP near your administrative police station near your residence. You must come with the collected documentation and apply for the ID card.

For kids below the legal age, the request should be conveyed by a parent or guardian as required by Croatian law.

For persons without the legal capacity to make the application, it should be made by legal representatives.

9. Get Your ID Card

Once you have fulfilled all the requirements, your national ID cards should be ready.

• 30 days for standard procedure• 10 days for the accelerated procedure

• 3 days for the urgent procedureYou need to collect them within the stipulated timelines noted below.

• 120 days for the standard procedure• 100 days for the accelerated procedure

• 93 days for the urgent procedure

Failure to pick up these cards within these timelines will result in cancellation. If this happens, you will need to start the process again and submit your application.

10. Activate Your ID Card

After picking up your ID card, you will receive a password and pin for the activation. It is important to know that the activation procedure will be done through the e-Ol website portal.

You will need a smart card reader to activate the card. Once you log into the portal, you should change the password and install the free software package. The last step for activation is changing the PIN. After that, you can start using your electronic cards.

11. Renewing and Changing Your Personal Data

To renew your card and change the addresses, you need to visit your nearest local administrative police station. All these processes will be completed via the e-Gradani system.

To pick your new e-Card, you must come with your old id card to the MUP. If you do not have it, you won't get your new card. Once you present the old one, MUP will cancel the old one and hand you a new one.

12. Travel with Your National ID Card

With the card in hand, Croatian citizens can travel with it within the EU, passport-free as it has a biometric chip. It is crucial to note that the national IDs for non-citizens do not have this built-in chip.

What Should You Do When You Lose Your Card?

Once you lose your card, suspect abuse of the card, or find someone's card in the Country, you must report the issue to the nearest MUP administrative office.

If you are outside Croatia, you should report the issue to the nearest Croatian embassy or consulate. You can find a list of all the available Croatian missions and consular offices you can visit.

Depending on the disappearance report, the MUP will declare the ID invalid and suspend any operations. If the ID is found within the first eight days, the certificates will resume operations. However, if it is not found within this timeline, it will be automatically revoked and rendered unusable.

Now, if you are older than 70 and your ID lacks digital certificates, you can continue using the ID if it is found within the first 15 days of reporting the case. In this scenario, you must notify the authorities of the findings.

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