When you have an international company, you may send some of your current employees to work in a new country. However, all countries have legal working requirements for noncitizens, so it’s crucial to know what documentation you need for lawful employment.
Types of Work Visas in Fiji
Noncitizens have a few work permit options, and their permit type depends on the kind of work they wish to do.
- Work permit: This standard permit covers any long-term work that isn’t under four specified categories. As an employer, you must supply a reason for not hiring a resident for this application.
- Short-term work permit: This documentation covers any employment lasting one year or less.
- Under education: This permit is required for work in education and must include an endorsement from the Ministry of Education, Heritage, and Arts (MEHA).
- Under religious: For any work in a religious context, individuals must apply for this permit. Employees do not require any endorsements, but they need a legal registration from the church they plan to work for.
- Under volunteer: If an individual is planning to volunteer while abroad, they need this permit type. No industry endorsement is required.
Fiji also offers permit exceptions for government or diplomatic work and investing permits for business projects. It’s also important to note that work permits don’t cover residence permits. Before your employees apply for any work visa, they need the proper documentation for living in the country.
Requirements to Obtain Fiji Work Visas
When your employees present their work visa applications to the Fiji Immigration Department, they’ll need a few critical documents, including:
- A valid passport.
- A signed and completed arrival card.
- An approval letter from the Immigration Department.
- A confirmed address in the country.
Requirements for a permit application vary based on the type, but they all request a curriculum vitae (CV) with relevant work experience and education.
The process for obtaining a work visa requires a series of documents and approvals for legal employment. The procedure begins with you and the employee completing the application together. This step should be completed before the employee arrives, which means they need to have a job lined up with your company before entering the country.
As the employer, you must apply to hire a noncitizen employee with the Immigration Department. From here, you’ll receive an application, which will ask for an array of items. Application attachments include:
- Training program details for the position.
- Residential history.
- A medical report.
- Evidence of proficiency in English.
You or the employee will then send the application to the Immigration Department for processing. When your employee receives their work permit documentation, they can start work.
Other Important Considerations
There are a few factors to consider when applying for a work permit, including time, money, permit renewal, and residency.
The standard processing time for a long-term work permit is 21 days. Make sure to consider this time when setting a start date for a job. Applications do include a processing fee, so be prepared to pay when submitting the documents. It’s also valuable to note that long-term permits must be renewed every three years for an individual to remain a legal worker.
Remember that employees must apply for a residence permit before getting a work visa to legally reside in the country.
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