Employment of Foreign Nationals in Russia
While establishing equal rights for Russian and foreign employees, Russian legislation stipulates certain restrictions concerning the work activity of foreign nationals in Russia. On July 25, 2002 the President of the Russian Federation approved Federal Law on the Legal Status of Foreign Nationals in the Russian Federation # 115-FZ (hereinafter referred to as the Law). The Law defines the legal status of foreign nationals in the Russian Federation and also covers the issues of their entry, departure, stay and employment.
The Law sets out the procedure according to which every foreign citizen must obtain a personal work permit for conducting labor activity in Russia (under a labor or civil law contract). The employer company is required to obtain this work permit for a foreign employee. In addition to this, the employer company must also obtain an employment permit in order to gain the right to employ foreign citizens (excepting CIS nationals). The Law also laid out some changes in the employment procedure, namely:
The preferential procedure of employment of foreign citizens by accredited representative offices and branches of foreign companies was abolished. Rep Offices and branches of foreign companies, as well as Russian companies must obtain employment permits. Every foreign citizen working either in a Russian company or in the representative office (branch) of a foreign company has to obtain a work permit.
The preferential procedure of obtaining work permits for highly qualified specialists hired for the positions of directors, their deputies, directors of subdivisions by companies with foreign investments was abolished
Citizens of the Commonwealth of Independent States, with the exclusion of Belarus, also require work permits
A foreign national doesn't need a work permit if he/she:
permanently resides in the Russian Federation
is an employee of the diplomatic corps or of the consular institutions of foreign states in the Russian Federation
is an employee hired to assemble and maintain equipment imported into Russia by a foreign company
is a journalist accredited in the Russian Federation
is a student studying in Russia and working in their spare time
is a lecturer or teacher invited by an educational organization
In circumstances other than those mentioned above, the Russian Government adopts an annual employment quota limiting the number of foreign nationals coming to the Russian Federation in order to work.
Procedure of Obtaining Employment and Work Permits
|Stages of obtaining employment permit and work permits
1. Submission of annual quota application.|
2. Submission of the documents to the Territorial Employment Service.
3. Submission of the documents to the Federal Migration Service.
4. Obtaining an Employment Permit from the Federal Migration Service.
5. Obtaining Work Permits from Migration Service.
Description of Russian visas
A visa is a document issued on the basis of an invitation for entry into the Russian Federation. The visa determines the length of time a foreign citizen may stay in Russia. All foreign individuals, excluding citizens of the Commonwealth of Independent States (most of the former Soviet Union Republics), need to have a visa to enter and stay in Russia. Citizens of Turkmenistan and Georgia are also required to apply for a Russian visa.
Work Visa Information
When this visa is required: When a foreign citizen enters Russia to work for a Russian company or a branch/RepOffice of a foreign company.
Foreign Employee (work) Visa Information
Inviting authority: Employer company.
Grounds for issuing such a visa: Foreign individual's Russian work permit.
Validity of this visa: Such visas are issued for a period of up to 12 months (equal to the work permit validity). This visa can be extended for another 12 months period without the necessity to exit Russia provided that the foreign individual's Russian work permit did not expire and/or the new work permit was obtained in time.
When this visa is required: When a foreign citizen enters Russia to work for a representative or branch office of a foreign company.
Business Visa Information
Inviting authority: The authority with which a representative or branch office is accredited.
Grounds for issuing such a visa: Foreign individual's personal accreditation card.
Term of this visa: As a rule, such visas are issued for a period of 12 months. This visa can be extended for another 12-month period without the necessity to exit Russia.
When this visa is required: When a foreign citizen enters Russia with the expressed purpose of conducting meetings, negotiations, participating in exhibitions and attending personal development and retraining programs.
Obligatory Personal Registration
Inviting authority: The authority (company) which this foreign citizen intends to visit for business.
Grounds for issuing such a visa: Invitation issued by the inviting authority (company).
Term of this visa: A business visa may be issued for up to a 12-month period, but it allows a foreign citizen to stay in Russia for no more than 90 days within each period of 180 days.
The Federal law of the Russian Federation dated 18.07.2006 No. 109-FZ "On the immigration record of foreign nationals and stateless persons in the Russian Federation" (hereinafter referred to as "Law No. 109-FZ") as of 15.01.2007 has established the following new registration rules at the place of stay for the Temporarily staying persons.
The Temporarily staying person, pursuant to common rule, is obliged to be registered / de-registered at their place of stay within 3 business days of arrival on the territory of the Russian Federation (subclause 2 clause 2 art. 20 of the Law No. 109-FZ) as described below (art. 22-23 of the Law No. 109-FZ).
The Temporarily staying person (having arrived in the Russian Federation and within 3 business days of arrival to the place of stay):
Provides the host party a document identifying his/her identity and acknowledged by the Russian Federation as such (passport), as well as the Russian "Migration Card" (copies of documents should be made since the withdrawal of original documents by the host party is not allowed - cl. 5 art. 22 of the Law No. 109-FZ);
The host party sends notification of his/her arrival to the place of stay (hereinafter referred to as the "Notification") to the corresponding immigration authority of the Russian Federation. The Temporarily staying person receives the detachable part of the Notification (with the remarks of the host party and of the corresponding immigration authority);
Before their departure from the place of stay the Temporarily staying person must return to the host party, the detachable part of the Notification (showing the departure date from the Russian Federation), which he/she had earlier received from the host party.
Law No. 109-FZ has also introduced the definition of the "host party", i.e.: "a citizen of the Russian Federation, permanently residing in the Russian Federation foreign national or stateless person, legal entity, branch or representative office of the legal entity, federal body of the state power, state power authority of subject of the Russian Federation, local authority, diplomatic representation or consulate authority of a foreign state in the Russian Federation, international company or its representative office in the Russian Federation or representative office of a foreign state associated with an international company located in the Russian Federation, where the foreign national or stateless person actually resides (stays) or in which the foreign national or stateless person works".
The Host party:
Sends the Notification to the corresponding immigration authority and receives the corresponding remarks of the immigration authority on the Notification, which acts as proof that the host party and the Temporarily staying person have complied with the legislation;
Transfers the detachable part of Notification to the Temporarily staying person;
Before their departure from the place of stay the Temporarily staying person must receive the detachable part of the Notification (with indication of the departure date from the Russian Federation),
Sends the detachable part of the Notification to the corresponding immigration authority not later than 2 days from the day the Temporarily staying person departs from the place of stay. These actions show that the host party has complied with the legislation.
In essence the above mentioned Notification substitutes the "Consent of landlord (owner of the residential premise) to registration of foreign national", which until 15.01.2007 was used for the registration of Temporarily staying persons in the Russian Federation.
We would also like to draw your special attention to the following essential issues:
If the Temporarily staying person stays at a hotel the responsibility for his/her immigration registration rests with the administration of this hotel.
The re-registering of the Temporarily staying persons at the place of stay needs to be performed at each change of the place of stay (at each new entry into the Russian Federation or any new point of the place of stay). According to the preliminary information obtained by our Company in the Department of the Federal Migration Service of Russia for Moscow this procedure of the re-registering at the place of stay may not be necessary if the period of absence of the Temporarily staying person in the earlier declared place of stay is not for more than 3 business days.
Since Law No. 109-FZ came into effect the place of stay will no longer be marked in the passports and Russian "Migration Cards" of the Temporarily staying persons.
Law No. 109-FZ declares that as of 15.01.2007 there exists the possibility to receive the confirmation of the federal post authority of the Russian Federation on the detachable part of the Notification and which when done will be considered as confirmation that the host party and the Temporarily staying person performed the actions necessary for registering at the place of stay (point а subclause 2 cl. 2 art. 22 of the Law No. 109-FZ).