Work Permit: The Procedure of Issuance and Refusal of Work Permit

October 24, 2021

There is one question that we regularly face. It is about the rules for issuing a “Work Permit” in the Republic of Azerbaijan. So, we will provide you with the most crucial points concerning the work permits in this blog.

I. What is a work permit and to whom it is given?

As its name suggests, a work permit is a form of a permit issued to individuals to work in the country. Here we are talking about a paid labor activity. Work permits are issued to foreigners and stateless persons. The State Migration Service of the Republic of Azerbaijan issues a work permit.

A. Who can engage in labor activity in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan by obtaining a “Work Permit”?

After receiving a work permit, every capable foreigner reaching the age of 18 can work in the Republic of Azerbaijan.  However, we must note that foreigners do not apply for a work permit themselves. Thus, the companies or individuals planning to hire them must apply for it. Employers should employ foreigners (stateless persons) in their working place. They should also conclude a labour contract in compliance with the validity period of the work permit. Concluding labour contract with foreigners without obtaining a work permit is prohibited.

B. Other nuances for taking into account

Foreigners and stateless persons may be involved in employment in vacancies not claimed by citizens of the Republic of Azerbaijan. Thus, they cannot be hired for any position but only for specific positions. In that case, employers must justify the need to involve foreigners (stateless persons) and not citizens of the Republic of Azerbaijan in that position. Then, foreigners involved in labor activity in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan must submit a document confirming that they have education in the relevant field.

At the same time, you need to take into account that every year only a certain number of foreigners and stateless persons (according to the annual quota set by the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan) can be involved in labor activity in the Republic of Azerbaijan.

II. The grounds for issuance of a Work Permit

As we have mentioned previously, every capable foreigner reaching the age of 18 can work in the Republic of Azerbaijan after receiving a work permit. However, in some cases they can work without obtaining such a permission. According to the Migration Code of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the “Work Permit” is issued for a maximum period of 1 year and must be renewed annually. However, if employers plan to hire a foreign worker for a shorter period of time, a “Work Permit” can be issued for less than 1 year.

According to the legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan, certain categories of foreigners (stateless persons) have the right to engage in employment without obtaining a “Work Permit”.

A. Circumstances where a work permit is not required

The right to engage in labor activity without obtaining a “Work Permit” is granted:

  • Those who possess a permit for permanent residence in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
  • Those who are dealing with entrepreneurial activity in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
  • Those who work for diplomatic representations and consulates;
  • Those who work for international organizations;
  • Heads and deputy heads of organizations established under international treaties;
  • Those who are employed by relevant executive authorities;
  • Military servicemen and experts invited to the serve or work for the Armed Forces of the Republic of Azerbaijan and other armed units, established according to the legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
  • The mass media employees accredited in the Republic of Azerbaijan;
  • Those who have seconded missions in the Republic of Azerbaijan for no more than 90 days per year in the spheres of activity specified by the relevant executive authority;
  • In order to perform some works or provide services in the spheres of activity specified by the relevant executive authority category of specialists determined by the relevant executive authority and invited by citizens of the Republic of Azerbaijan or legal entities founded in the Republic of Azerbaijan.
  • Seamen;
  • Professors, teachers and lecturers invited to deliver lectures in higher educational institutions;
  • Art workers, coaches and athletes invited to work for sport clubs officially registered by the relevant executive authority;
  • Those who carry out professional religious activity in religious associations that passed the state registration;
  • Heads and deputy heads of branches and representations of foreign legal entities in the Republic of Azerbaijan;
  • Heads and deputy heads of a legal entity founded in the Republic of Azerbaijan when its founder or at least one of its founders is a foreign legal entity or natural person;
  • Those who are married with a citizen of the Republic of Azerbaijan, provided that the said citizen is registered at the place of residence in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
  • Those, who applied for, obtained refugee status or were granted political asylum;
  • Those who are foster parents of citizens of the Republic of Azerbaijan who are under 18 years of age or disabled persons of group I.
  • Those who are involved in labor activity in cases specified by the relevant executive authority.
B. Required documents

In order to obtain a Work Permit the employers must submit following documents:

  • application form;
  • a copy of the passport or other border crossing document of the foreigner or stateless person;
  • a notarized copy of the document confirming that the foreigner and stateless person have the qualifications required to perform the intended work;
  • a certificate substantiating the need to involve a foreigner or a stateless person for the intended job;
  • Medical certificate confirming that the foreigner or stateless person is not a carrier of infectious diseases (human immunodeficiency virus infection, hepatitis B and C viruses) approved by the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

If employer:

  • in case of a legal entity – notarized copies of the charter of the legal entity and the certificate of state registration;
  • in the case of a natural person – notarized copies of the identity document of the natural person and the taxpayer registration certificate issued to the natural person;
C. Ground for refusal of a Work Permit

Foreigners and stateless persons are denied work permits in the following cases:

  • if the documents provided for in Article 65 of this Code are not submitted;
  • if the submitted documents are forged, contain inaccurate or distorted information;
  • if it is possible to meet the employer’s demand for labor at the expense of local labor resources;
  • if the foreigner or stateless person to be employed is under 18 years of age;
  • when the labor migration quota is filled;
  • if the list of foreigners and stateless persons is a carrier of infectious diseases determined by the relevant executive authority;
  • if the foreigner or stateless person does not have the qualifications or work experience required to perform the work in which he / she is involved.

See also:

  1. ACON – LAW AND INVESTMENT, Procedure for Issuance, Refusal and Revocation of Temporary Residence Permits, https://acon.az/procedure-for-issuance-refusal-and-revocation-of-temporary-residence-permits/ (2019).
  2. ACON – LAW AND INVESTMENT, Requirements for a Permanent Residence Permit in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan, https://acon.az/requirements-for-a-permanent-residence-permit-in-the-territory-of-the-republic-of-azerbaijan/ (2021).
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