A third country national must apply for a Schengen visa at the representation of the competent state (see page "Determination of the competent state") and at the representation of the Schengen state in whose jurisdiction (consular district) the applicant legally resides. (see page "Consular territorial competence").
A visa application will be accepted no more than three month before the start of the intended visit. If the applicant holds a multiple-entry visa issued previously, an application for a new visa may be lodged before the expiry of the visa valid for at least 6 months, i.e., a holder of a multiple-entry visa has the right to apply for a new visa also in case the previous visa has not expired.
A visa application is admissible when the following have been submited:
- an application form
- a travel document
- a photograph
- the visa fee has been paid (in cases when that is required)
Where the representation has verified that the above listed conditions have been fulfilled, the visa application is admissible and is further examined. Where the said conditions have not been fulfilled, the application is inadmissible, the application form is returned to the applicant, the visa fee is reimbursed and the application is not examined.