Temporary or permanent residence permit for IT specialists in Ukraine - which is better?

More and more often we are contacted by Сlients from different parts of the world, who work for foreign IT companies, but are interested in moving and living in Ukraine. First of all they are guided by the fact that living conditions in the country are quite good and less expensive, and taxation of their type of activity is much lower than in Europe or America.

In addition, we receive requests from Ukrainian IT companies for employment of foreign specialists, as they want to adopt foreign practices and enhance skills of their employees, as well as improve the company’s product. Such Clients want to relocate foreign IT staff to Ukraine in the best possible way. What is the procedure that will allow the employee to get to work faster and stay, if necessary, in Ukraine?

Today, we will tell you which cases require obtaining a Temporary Residence Permit, and which situations allow you to initiate the procedure of obtaining a Permanent Residence Permit under the IT specialist quota in Ukraine.

If you want to know which option would be optimal in your case, please contact us for a personal consultation with a migration lawyer.

You may also like: What Is the Best Option for an IT-Specialist to Work in Ukraine: Sole Proprietorship or Employment?

What factors can affect the choice of the scheme for obtaining a residence permit in Ukraine?

The first factor to pay attention to is the desired period of stay in Ukraine

If a person is not sure that he/she wants to stay in the country for a long time, and the company needs a specialist for a short-term project, then a good option would be to apply for a Temporary Residence Permit through employment. 

This document gives you a legal right to reside and work in Ukraine for the period of 6 months to 3 years with the possibility of multiple extensions. The validity period of the Temporary Residence Permit depends on the validity period of the foreigner’s Work Permit

If a person plans to stay in Ukraine for a long time, or if a company has long-term prospects for this employee, then an excellent option is to apply for a Permanent Residence Permit.  This document is valid for 10 years and allows a foreigner to apply for Ukrainian citizenship in the future (in 5 years).

The second factor that can objectively affect the plans is the speed of obtaining a residence permit in Ukraine. 

That is, the period of legalizing the foreigner’s stay in Ukraine for the required period of time, and in the case of employers - how soon a foreigner will be able to fully start working.

The procedure of preparing documents, applying for and receipt of the Temporary Residence Permit takes on average 1.5 - 2 months

However, the procedure of obtaining Permanent Residence Permits is much longer. Preparation of documents on average takes up to 1 month, then the documents must be approved by the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Digital Transformation, which will take at least 2 weeks. Then the documents are submitted to the migration service and are considered there for at least 1 year

After the migration service issues the permit, the documents must be submitted for the Permanent Residence Permit, which takes up to 1 month.  Thus, the entire procedure for obtaining the Permanent Residence Permit within a quota for IT specialists will take more than a year. In this case, all this time the specialist can not legally reside in Ukraine and can’t be employed officially.

The third factor will be the procedure of registration and employment of a foreign IT specialist in Ukraine.

In case of applying for a Temporary Residence Permit, the foreigner must obtain a Work Permit with the employing company. Even if the foreigner starts a company, he/she still needs to get a Work Permit to get employed in his/her own company as a director. 

However, the company doesn’t need to conduct business activity, as the tax rates in such a case are quite high. Often, in addition to this, we offer foreigners to register as sole proprietors of the 3rd group - then the taxation rate is only 5%, and the foreigner can conduct their business through it.

The sole proprietorship is a good option for those IT professionals who want to live in Ukraine, but work with different customers, including foreign ones. Read more about this scheme here.

The situation is different for foreigners who apply for a Permanent Residence Permit - they are considered as residents of Ukraine, and can get a job according to the standard procedure, like citizens of Ukraine, without applying for a Work Permit and restrictions on concurrent employment.

The last factor we would like to mention is the complexity of obtaining both types of Residence Permits.

The category for obtaining a Permanent Residence Permit under the IT quota has a clear list of requirements that must be met by a foreigner. In case of non-compliance with these requirements, you won’t get a Temporary Residence Permit. 

On the other hand, anyone who has legal grounds (Work Permit) can obtain a Temporary Residence Permit.

You may also like: Tax Rate for IT Activities in Ukraine

Which option to choose?

If you are a foreigner working under an agreement, and the main thing that you are interested in is to live legally in Ukraine, and receive official payments with minimal taxation - then you can start with a Temporary Residence Permit through the Work Permit with starting a sole proprietorship. This will solve your issue for the period of up to three years. And later you can choose what is more convenient for you - to extend your permit or to initiate the procedure for obtaining a Permanent Residence Permit.

If you initially fall under the criteria for a Permanent Residence Permit, and you are not afraid of the length of time it takes to obtain it, apply for it and do not bother with starting a company and extending your Temporary Residence Permit.

For the employing company the right option would be to get the Work Permit and the Temporary Residence Permit for the employee. And later you can decide to extend the Permit or to apply for a Permanent Residence Permit, or to terminate employment relations with the foreigner.

If you do not find a suitable option for you or you doubt what is better, we can help you find the best solution.

We will provide assistance in preparing, executing and submitting the documents for the desired type of the permit, and we will supervise the review of the documents. 

Our team also offers advice and step-by-step guide on further extensions, keeping documents up-to-date, etc. Our goal is to become your reliable partner in all legal matters, making their solution easy and efficient for you.

You can compare the cost and conditions of obtaining a Permanent Residence Permit and a Temporary Residence Permit in Ukraine on our service pages:

The cost of obtaining a Temporary Residence Permit for an IT specialist.

The cost of obtaining a Permanent Residence Permit for an IT specialist.

Do you want to solve the issue of legal and comfortable stay in Ukraine? Don’t hesitate to contact us! We’ll help you to find the best solution and put it into action.

Didn’t find an answer to your question?

Everything about the procedure of obtaining a Temporary Residence Permit here.

Everything about the procedure of obtaining a Permanent Residence Permit in Ukraine within the quota for IT specialists here.

Publication date: 11/11/2021

We are ready to help you!

Contact us by mail [email protected], by phone number +38 044 499 47 99or by filling out the form: