Conditions for being granted a work permit in Vietnam

– Having full civil act capacity as prescribed by law.

– Having good health in accordance with job requirements.

– Being a manager, executive director, expert or technical worker.

– Not being an offender or being examined for penal liability in accordance with the laws of Vietnam and foreign laws.

– Being approved in writing by the Ministry of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs on the employment of foreign workers.

Order of procedures to apply for a work permit

Step 1: The employer conducts the explanation of the demand for foreign labor.

Competent agencies: Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs of provinces / cities or provincial / municipal People’s Committees.

Processing time: 15 working days from the date dossiers valid.

Step 2: Submit the application for a work permit for foreign workers to the licensing authority.

Profile include:

  • Application form for a work permit.
  • A health certificate or health certificate issued by an authorized foreign or Vietnamese medical agency or organization.
  • A criminal record card or a document certifying that a foreign worker is not an offender or is examined for a foreign criminal liability.
  • Documents proving that they are managers, executives, experts or technical workers.
  • 02 color photos (size 4cm x 6cm, white background, straight face, bare head, no colored glasses), photographs taken within 06 months before the date of submission.
  • Copy of passport or valuable papers in lieu of passports or valid international travel documents as prescribed by law.
  • Other papers related to foreign workers

Step 3: Sign a written labor contract in accordance with Vietnamese labor laws before the expected date of employment for the employer.

Within 05 working days from the date of signing the labor contract, the employer must send a copy of the signed labor contract to the Ministry of Labor – Invalids and Social Affairs that issued the work permit. there.

Agency authorized: Department of Labor – Invalids and Social Affairs of the province / city

Processing time: 05 working days from the date of receipt of complete and valid file required.

Note: when carrying out the procedure for applying for a work permit: Documents issued by foreign countries must be consular legalized and translated into Vietnamese for legal use in Vietnam.


Article 172 of the  Labor Code 2012 and Article 7 of Decree 11/2016/ND-CP stipulates that 03 groups of foreigners who are working in Vietnam are exempt from work permits, specifically:

Group 1. Working groups at Vietnamese enterprises

1 – As a capital contributing member or owner of the limited company;

2 – Being a member of the Board of Directors of a joint stock company;

3 – Entering Vietnam for less than 03 months to perform a service offering;

4 – Entering Vietnam for less than 03 months to deal with incidents, complicated technical and technological situations affecting or potentially affecting production and business activities of domestic and foreign experts currently in Vietnam. unable to process;

5 – Moving within businesses of 11 service sectors: business, information, construction, distribution, education, environment, finance, health, tourism, culture, entertainment and transportation;

6 – Entering Vietnam to work as a specialist, manager, executive director or technical worker for less than 30 days and cumulative not exceeding 90 days / year;

Group 2. Working groups at Vietnamese agencies and organizations

1 – Head of representative office, project of international organizations, non-governmental organizations in Vietnam;

2 – Being a foreign lawyer who has been licensed to practice law in Vietnam;

3 – Subject to the provisions of international treaties to which Vietnam is a member;

4 – Enter Vietnam to provide professional, technical or other consultancy services for research, construction, evaluation, monitoring, evaluation, management and implementation of programs and projects. use of official development assistance (ODA);

  1. Being licensed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to conduct press and information activities in Vietnam;

6 – Volunteers certified by foreign diplomatic missions or international organizations in Vietnam;

  1. Going to Vietnam to implement an international agreement signed by a central or provincial agency or organization;
  2. Relatives of members of foreign representations in Vietnam who work after being licensed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, unless otherwise provided for by international treaties to which Vietnam is a contracting party;

9 – Having official passport to work for State agencies, political organizations, socio-political organizations;

Group 3. Research and training group

1 – Being a student or student studying or working in Vietnam;

2 – Being sent by foreign agencies or organizations to Vietnam for teaching and research at international schools or certified by the Ministry of Education and Training to teach and research at educational and training establishments in Vietnam Male;

3 – Pupils and students study at schools and facilities in foreign training, there is an internship agreement in agencies, organizations and enterprises in Vietnam;

4 – Other cases.

Procedures for applying for exemption from work permit:

Step 1: The employer explains the need for foreign labor to the competent authority.

Step 2: Apply for a work permit exemption for the foreign worker.

A dossier of application for certification of a foreign worker not subject to a work permit includes:

  • Official dispatch of application for exemption of work permit;
  • A list of employees with content: Full name, gender, nationality, passport number, job position, qualification, place of work, start and end dates work, accompanying papers;
  • Documents of a foreign enterprise sent to work in Vietnam (Decision, appointment letter or internal mobilization must be employed by the foreign enterprise at least 12 months in advance);
  • Document certifying experience as a manager, executive director, specialist or technical worker;
  • University or master’s degree, doctorate suitable for the job position;
  • Investment license, business registration certificate, representative office or branch establishment license;
  • Work permit (if granted);
  • Notarized passport.

Author: LawPlus


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