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New rules for work permits in Ukraine

August 2009 - Employment. Legal Developments by Wolf Theiss.

More articles by this firm.

In view of the increase in unemployment, Ukraine also will amend its rules and regulations regarding the issuance of work permits for foreigners. These new rules will affect those Austrian expats currently working in Ukraine (e.g. managing directors, members of supervisory boards and other skilled labour) who wish to extend their work permits, as well as those who intend to work in Ukraine once the respective law has been enacted.


As a first step, the fee for obtaining a work permit was raised from EUR 13.00 to EUR 250.00. More importantly, however, the number of documents to be submitted in order to obtain a work permit has been significantly increased; moreover, there are also new formal requirements. In addition, applicants have to submit (1) a certificate of good conduct and (2) a confirmation that the local enterprise at which they will be employed has made all prescribed payments to the respective employment authorities. Also, copies of the applicant's (1) passport and (2) reports giving proof of his qualifications, as well as training received abroad, must be submitted in notarised form, with an apostil affixed to them and translated into Ukrainian. Documents produced in Germany and Belgium are subject to consular authentication, i.e. apostils affixed to documents in Germany and Belgium are not recognised in Ukraine.

A matter of routine

Before the new rules and regulations took legal effect, applying for a Ukrainian work permit was a matter of routine. The HR department or an in-house lawyer of the respective company simply filed a request for the issuance of a work permit. The new rules and regulations will considerably complicate matters and possibly require applicants to resort to external consultants in order to obtain a work permit. What is more, the necessary apostils, as well as consular authentications of the documents to be submitted, take several weeks to obtain.


For further information, please contact Roman Kolos, Wolf Theiss, Tel. +380 44 3 777 500,


This article was already published in Wirtschaftsblatt in May 2009.