Global Updates – Ireland, Poland, and Russia
IRELAND – Signed Employment Contract Required for All Employment Permit Applications
Effective March 26, 2018, the Employment Permits (Amendment) Regulations 2018 introduce several changes, including an important new documentary requirement and an expansion of the occupations qualifying for intra-company transfers.
What are the key changes?
- A copy of the signed employment contract must be submitted in support of all initial and renewal employment permit applications.
- The Ineligible Categories of Employment List (ICEL) is no longer applicable to Intra-Company Transfer Employment Permit applications.
- Several animation occupations have been added to the Highly Skilled Eligible Occupations List (HSEOL).
- Several chef grades have been exempted from the Ineligible Categories of Employment List (ICEL).
Applicants for new or renewal employment permits from March 26, 2018 should be sure to submit a signed employment permit in support of the application. Employers should consult with their immigration advisor at McCown & Evans LLP to check how the changes to the occupation lists may affect them.
POLAND – New Intra-Corporate Transferee Permit Available
Effective February 12, 2018, Poland has introduced a new combined work and residence permit category for intra-corporate transfer (ICT), transposing into national law European Union (EU) Directive 2014/66 “on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals in the framework of an intra-corporate transfer”.
EU ICT Permit
The new ICT residence permit is available to third-country nationals transferred to work in Poland within the same group of companies as managers or specialists with suitable professional qualifications, or as trainees with a university degree. The foreign employee must have worked for their sending company at least twelve months (six months for trainees) and be paid at least 70% of the average remuneration in the relevant region.
Applicants must be outside the EU when the application is submitted.
The combined work/residence permits are issued for a duration of up to three years for managers and specialists, and up to one year for trainees.
A holder of an ICT permit issued in Poland will be able to work in another EU member state for a company of the same group, for stays of up to 90 days in a 180-day period, without a separate work permit, although the host country may require a notification. For stays of more than 90 days, a “mobile ICT permit” for that country may be required.
A holder of an EU ICT permit issued in another EU member state can work at a company of the same group in Poland for up to 90 days without obtaining a separate permit. A notification must, however, be filed with the authorities.
For assignments of more than 90 days in Poland, a holder of an EU ICT permit issued in another EU member state can apply for a long-term mobility permit. The applicant can enter Poland while this application is pending but cannot start work until the permit is approved. This permit cannot be issued for longer than the validity of the original EU ICT Permit from the first EU member state.
Existing Work Permit for Intra Company Transfer
The intra-EU mobility features of the new ICT permit will be useful for multinational employers who need assignees to work in several EU countries.
However, for employers seeking to post an employee to Poland only, the existing intra-company transfer work permit route is likely to remain the preferred option, as the new ICT permit has more extensive document requirements, cannot be renewed and may have longer processing time.
Directive 2014/66/EU of May 15, 2014 “on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals in the framework of an intra-corporate transfer” aims to create a consistent EU-wide system for non-EU nationals sent on assignment within a group of companies to EU Member States.
Employers intending to transfer third-country nationals to Poland from outside the EU within the same group of companies should consult their immigration advisor at McCown & Evans LLP for advice on the best route to follow.
RUSSIA – Draft Law to Restrict Employment of Foreign Nationals Introduced
On April 13, 2018, a draft law was introduced to the Russian parliament, proposing new powers to ban or restrict the employment of nationals of the United States and/or other countries imposing sanctions on Russia.
If passed, Federal Law No. 441399-7 “On Measures of Affect (Counteraction) in Connection with Unfriendly Actions of the United States of America and (or) other Foreign States” may be used to restrict the employment of certain foreign nationals, including highly-qualified specialists, as a countermeasure when sanctions are imposed on Russia by other states.
The first reading of the draft law by the State Duma is scheduled for mid-May 2018.
Employers of foreign nationals in Russia should be prepared for the possibility of this law taking effect and affecting some of their employees. Employers are advised to consult with their immigration advisor at McCown & Evans LLP for more specific advice.