Citizens who hold citizenship of a country outside the European Union, the European Economic Area, or the Swiss Confederation and wish to work in Romania must obtain a work permit. This permit is issued by Romanian immigration authorities at the request of the employer.
It is an essential document for applying for a long-stay visa or a residence permit, depending on the situation. Before starting work in Romania, foreign citizens must have the work permit.
Based on this work permit, the foreign citizen can only work for one company and in one specific job position with a corresponding occupational code (COR). If they wish to work for another company, they must obtain another work permit.
Depending on the type of activity, there are several types of work permits:
1. Work Permit for Permanent Workers: foreign citizens who are employed in Romania under an indefinite or fixed-term individual employment contract with an employer based on the work permit.
2. Work Permit for Posted Workers: foreign citizens temporarily seconded or posted by a company established in a third country, who have a valid employment contract with the same employer or a company within the same group of companies as the one from which they are being seconded, or with a beneficiary of service provision belonging to the same enterprise or group of companies.
3. Work Permit for Highly Qualified Workers: Highly skilled foreign citizens who are employed in Romania for a highly qualified job position, under an indefinite or fixed-term employment contract of at least one year, can obtain this type of work permit based on their qualifications and the employer’s request.
4. Work Permit for ICT workers (Intra-Corporate Transfers): foreign citizens who reside in a third country at the time of the application for the posting permit and are subject to an intra-corporate transfer within the same company.
Other types of work permits that can be granted to foreign citizens include work permits for au pairs, seasonal workers, interns, and cross-border workers.
To obtain a work permit, the employer must meet certain conditions as provided by Ordinance No. 25/2014, including:
a) the employer, whether a legal entity, a natural person authorized, or a sole proprietorship, conducts activities compatible with the position for which they are requesting the employment of a foreign citizen on the territory of Romania.
b) the employer has fulfilled their obligations towards the state budget for the last quarter preceding the submission of the application.
c) the employer has not been definitively convicted of an offense under the Labor Code or an intentional offense against persons as stipulated by the Criminal Code.
In order to obtain a work permit for permanent workers, the employer is required to submit a series of documents, including a certificate regarding the available workforce for the vacant position, issued no more than 60 days prior to the submission of the request for the employment permit by the labor agency within whose territorial jurisdiction the employer is headquartered or operates professionally.
The procedure for obtaining this certificate involves the following steps:
1. submitting the job vacancies offer in the Romanian language (Annex 1). This form should be completed and submitted to the institution’s registry or sent via email or fax. It should include information and conditions related to the job positions (number of positions, required experience, foreign languages, offer validity) and must be stamped and signed by the legal representative of the employer. It is mandatory to fill in the section „Offer valid for European Union citizens as well”.The validity of the offer should be a minimum of 5 working days from the date of publication of the job vacancies offer on the European portal.
For the issuance of this certificate, only the offers of employers will be accepted, which, at the requirements of the workplace, mentions as foreign languages necessary for the occupation of the position only those of wide European circulation.
2. submitting a request for the certificate, based on the previously submitted job offer, accompanied by an authorization for the person who will collect the documentation issued by the agency, along with a copy of that person’s identification document. The authorization must be presented at least 2 days before the issuance of the certificate and can be in the form of:
- power of attorney;
- for an employee within the company (in this case, the position held by that person should be specified).
- power of attorney from a notary, valid at the time of certificate issuance (for individuals who are employers and are authorizing other individuals).
- for a representative of another company with which the employer firm has a service contract, consulting contract (in this situation, the contract number and its date of conclusion should be specified).
The offer of vacancies and the application for certificate, accompanied by the power of attorney, can be submitted on the same day. The necessary certificate at the General Inspectorate for Immigration can be issued only if the submitted documentation is complete, according to the procedure.
When submitting the application for the issuance of the employment notice, the employer will also pay a fee.
The General Inspectorate for Immigration will process the application for the employment permit within 30 days from the date of registration. In cases where additional verifications are required, the deadline may be extended by up to 15 days.
It is important to mention that in the current context, the volume of requests is high, and for this reason, the processing time for the application may be exceeded even if it has already been extended by up to 15 days, as mentioned above.
After obtaining the work permit, the employer must send this document to the foreign citizen, and the foreign citizen will need to obtain a long-stay visa for employment from the diplomatic missions or consular offices of Romania.
Foreign citizens who are not required to obtain a visa to enter Romania are allowed access to the territory of the Romanian state and can stay for a maximum of 90 days within any 180-day period preceding each day of stay in Romania.
Employing a foreign citizen on Romanian territory without a work permit, with or without an individual employment contract, or employing a foreign citizen with illegal residence, with or without an individual employment contract, is subject to a fine ranging from 10.000 RON to 20.000 RON for each identified person.
Author: Atty. Felicia Cioflan