Obtaining a work permit in Ukraine

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According to current legislation of Ukraine all persons regardless of their origin, sex, political views, social and property status, race and nationality are entrusted with a right to freely select a kind of activity taking into consideration personal interests and social needs.

A work permit is an official document which certifies a right of a foreign or stateless person to conduct labor activity on the territory of Ukraine.

The legislation of Ukraine provides certain categories of foreign and stateless persons to conduct labor activity on the territory of Ukraine without obtaining a work permit. These categories include:

  • foreign and stateless persons which permanently reside on the territory of Ukraine (on the basis of a permanent residence permit);
  • persons which obtained a refugee status in Ukraine;
  • foreign and stateless persons which were hired by an investor within the profession defined by a production-sharing agreement.

The aforementioned categories of refugees, foreign and stateless persons are entitled to obtain a job according to the same grounds and according to the same order as the citizens of Ukraine. That is, they can obtain a job without any permits and according to mutual agreement between them and an employer.

All other foreign and stateless persons who arrived to Ukraine in order to obtain a job for a determined period of time can conduct labor activity according to a work permit, obtained pursuant to the prescribed procedure. A work permit can be obtained, provided that there are no workers in the country or region, able to implement a certain kind of work, or if there are sufficient grounds for advisability to employ foreign experts.

A permit for employment of a foreign person is issued to an employer for up to a one year term by the State Employment Service of Ukraine, or, on its behalf, by the employment centers of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, Kyiv, Sevastopol, and the other various regions of Ukraine.

In order to obtain a work permit, an employer is required to submit to the corresponding employment center a list of documents which includes a standard application form, grounds of necessity to employ a foreign person, a labor contract, copies of the company’s documents (a copy of articles of association, an extract from the State Unified Registry of companies and organizations of Ukraine) etc.

In case of the employment of a foreign person – who was directed to Ukraine by a foreign economic entity to implement certain works or provide services on the basis of a contract concluded between Ukrainian and foreign economic entities – an employer shall be acquitted from an obligation to submit a copy of a model labor contract, grounds of necessity to employ a foreign person and possibility to create corresponding conditions of stay and work.


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