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Starting 1st of Jan 2015 submission of following notifications regarding standard work permit holders' employment will not be required:

Notification to the Tax Authority reporting hiring\dismissal of the employee

Starting 1st of Jan 2015 following notifications are introduced:

Notification to the Federal Migration Service office reporting hiring\dismissal of the

Employee within 3 business days from the day of signing or termination of the labour agreement

Penalties for violation are up to 1 000 000 RUB


Starting 1st of Jan 2015:

Russian language, history and basics of legal knowledge test applies to all categories of standard work permit applicants



Starting 1st of Jan 2015: 

Work Permits for CIS nationals are replaced with work patents

Regional authorities will have the right to "hire" 3d -party organizations to process work patents applications   

Work Patents are issued for the maximum term of 12 months

Work Patent can be extended only 1 time

Work Patent allows CIS nationals to work for private persons as well as companies

Income tax is paid by the work patent applicants themselves for the whole period of employment (max. 12 months) before work patent is issued to them

Will give right to work in a particular Russian region only

Will not contain job position, which will allow for transfer without need to amend the document

Applicant does not require an employer to apply for the initial 12 months work patent, only subsequent extension will have to be sponsored by employer

Work patent holder can work for any employer within the Russia region for which the patent was issued save some minor nuances

Russian language, history and basics of legal knowledge test applies to all categories of work patent applicants

Employers will have the right to supply their employees only with Medical Insurance from companies registered in Russia and in some regions only from companies determined by the governor

Medical Testing as well as Fingerprinting procedure also remain a requirement


Most of the powers with regards to issuance of work patents will be transferred to governors of Russia regions who will have the right to:

Stop issuance of work patents any time basing their decision on Labour Authorities' proposals

Determine whether job positions should be indicated on work patents

Should governor determine that job positions should be indicated on work patents he will have the right to ban issuance of patents for certain job positions as well as to issue orders to dismiss all the work patent holders employed in such positions who received the patents before a ban in question was introduced

Determine Medical Centers which will be allowed to assist work patent applicants with medical examination

Determine Schools and Universities which will be allowed to test work patent applicants on Russian language, history and legal basics knowledge

Determine Insurance companies which will have right to issue Medical Insurance to work patents applicants



Starting the 1st of January 2015 Russia will no longer have standard work permit process for CIS nationals. Instead the work patent system is introduced. According to the new legislation CIS national willing to work in Russia will have to enter the country declaring on the migration card (special document issued at the border control) that the purpose of his visit is work. Then he or she will have 30 calendar days to apply for the work patent. Violation of this deadline will cause the applicant to be fined for up to 15 000 RUB. Though, after paying the fine he or she will still have the right to lodge the application. Once the work patent is issued, the CIS national will need to find employment within 2 months from the day of work patent collection and send a copy of the labour agreement to the federal migration service which issued them the patent. Should the applicant violate this deadline his or her work patent will be cancelled by the federal migration service office and they will have the right to re-apply only in 1 year's time.

Upon receipt of the work patent applicant has to pay a fixed income tax amount. The letter will be determined by regional governments. Fixed income tax amount will be set for 1 month. By paying this tax amount the work patent is "extended". Should the work patent holder fail to pay, their patent will be annulled.

The maximum validity of the initial work patent is set at 12 months. The initial patent can be extended. But in order to file for extension application from employer will be required. The initial patent can be extended for further 12 months. After which CIS national is supposed to leave the country. It will be impossible to extend the work patent for the 2nd time. This though does not preclude the foreign worker from filing for another initial work patent.

Employers will not have to sponsor initial work patent applications. Additionally in comparison to the existing system no quota or agreement from the Labour Authorities will be required for employers to engage CIS nationals with work patents.

This can be seen as a significant relaxation of the law, though it seems that employers whose foreign workforce primarily consists of CIS nationals will be "trapped" in their region governor's hands. If previously, having survived through a time consuming bureaucratic quota application process and having received the quota places employers were at least 99 per cent sure that they will be able to engage the foreign work force they need, now it is no longer the case.  Russia regions governors are given the right to stop issuance of work patents at any time basing their decision on Labour Office opinion as well as determine by order that all work patent holders who are engaged in certain type of work need to be dismissed by their employers in a given timeframe.

Especially should be noted that starting new years the standard work permit and work patent applicants will have to pass Russian language, history and basics of legal knowledge tests. Work patent applicants will also have to accomplish many additional tasks apart from the test: pass medical examination, fingerprinting procedure, buy insurance from the designated insurance company, personally appear at the authority\responsible 3d-party organization to lodge the application for the patent and then subsequently appear for the collection.

We assess the impact of these amendments as major. Especially affected will be companies which engage primarily CIS foreign nationals. Due to the fact that none of the above developments will affect highly qualified specialists work permit process it is expected that more and more employers will look in the direction of engaging exclusively HQS Work Permit holders and even more so in the light of Representative Offices being granted the right to sponsor HQS work permits as well as the introduction of the lowered salary level for HQS work permits applications lodged by companies engaged in IT-industry.  

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See more:
- 2015: Changes to the immigration legislation
- Starting 12 December 2014 new labour regulations for foreign workforce
- Dear All

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