Work permit/ Work permit exemption for foreigners in Vietnam

Work permit in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Vietnam has seen a huge wave of foreign investment, which leads to high demands for using foreign employees to work in Vietnam now that the labor force in this country does not meet requirements.

According to the HSBC Expat 2019 report released in the middle of July 2019, Vietnam for the first time becomes one of the top 10 best countries for foreigners to come living and working. Therefore, more and more foreigners are coming to seek job opportunities in this beautiful country.

In order to work legally in Vietnam, foreign workers must meet certain conditions (behavioral capacity, health, professional qualifications, techniques …). On a case-by-case basis, foreign workers may apply for a Work Permit or a Work Permit Exemption for working in Vietnam.

I. APPLICATION PROCEDURES FOR A WORK PERMIT IN VIETNAM

Step 1: Determine the demand for using foreign employees

Employers (except for contractors) are responsible for determining their demand for employment of foreign employees and submit a report to a competent government authority where their employees are expected to work.

Step 2: Application for a work permit

conditions for establishment of a representative office in Vietnam

Documents required for a Work Permit

  • The application for a work permit.
  • A health certificate or a medical examination certificate issued by a medical agency or organization in Vietnam, not exceeding 12 months up to the date of submission.
  • A criminal check record (issued in foreign countries or Vietnam), not exceeding 6 months before being submitted.
  • Documents proving that the foreign employee is a manager, executive director, expert or technical worker.
  • 02 colored photos (size 4cm x 6cm, white background, straight face, bare head, without wearing colored glasses).
  • Authenticated copy of passport and visa of foreigner.
  • Other papers related to foreign employees, depending on each specific case.

Note: some papers of foreign employees must be consular legalized and translated into Vietnamese before being submitted to government agencies.
Licensing authority: Department of Labor – Invalids and Social Affairs where foreign employees are expected to work.
Time of completion: 15 working days, as of submitting valid a dossier.

II. APPLICATION PROCEDURES FOR A WORK PERMIT EXEMPTION

The law of Vietnam stipulates a number of cases where foreign workers do not have to apply for work permits as specified in the Section 1 above. They instead must apply for a Work Permit Exemption in order to be recruited and work legally in Vietnam.
Those who are exempt from applying for work permits:

  1. Being a capital-contributing member or owner of a limited liability company.
  2. Being a member of the Board of Directors of a joint stock company.
  3. Being the Chief of representative office or project of an international organization or non-governmental organization in Vietnam.
  4. Moving within enterprises doing business in the field of eleven services as specified in the Schedule of Service Commitments of Vietnam with WTO.
  5. Other cases as stipulated in the Decree 11/2016/ND-CP.

Documents required for a Work Permit Exemption

  • The written request for certification that the foreign worker is exempt from a work permit;
  • Documents proving that the foreign worker is exempt from a work permit;
  • Authenticated copy of passport and visa of foreigner.

Note: some papers of foreigners must be consular legalized and translated into Vietnamese before being submitted to government agencies.
Licensing authority: Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs where foreign workers are expected to work.
Time of completion: 10 working days, as of submitting a valid dossier

Looking for advice on Work Permit from a reliable local English speaking law firm?

ALB & Partners Law Firm is a professional and reputable legal firm related to investment and business activities of foreign investors in Vietnam. We help our clients of work permits for expatriates, investment or work visa, temporary residence card, registration of office rules and collective labour agreements in Vietnam.

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