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Temporary residence and work permit

Since January 2013 a foreign national who has obtained temporary residence in Russia can work without work permit.


After reading this sentences you may probably ask - “wasn’t it the same way before?”...


To answer this question, let us look at the historical background. In 2002, the “Federal Law on Foreign nationals legal status in Russia” was signed into law. It specified that a foreign national who has obtained a TRP does not have to obtain a work permit in order to be able to work. Five years later, in January 2007, the situation had changed: temporary residents were required to obtain a work permit. “For what purpose, why, and where is logic here?” We have no answer to any of these questions... Presumably, people who made these changes could not answer it either. Therefore, six years later, in January 2013, lawmakers decided to allow foreign nationals who have temporary residence status to work in Russia without having to obtain a work permit...


Unfortunately, changing these legal mistakes usually takes years. It also took quite a while, for example, to address the problem with visas for temporary residents.
 

Working after obtaining a temporary residence permit

Thus, when a foreign national obtains a TRP, he or she currently does not have to obtain an additional work permit. So, what obstacles to employment in Russia are still in effect for foreign nationals?

  • The only serious obstacle today is tying a temporary resident to the region of Russia (the “federal subject”) in which the TRP was issued. It means that a foreign national who has acquired the temporary residence status is entitled to work only within the region where he or she received the temporary residence permit. Many foreign nationals do not pay attention to this rule and this creates problems when they try to find a job. For example, if the temporary residence status was received in the Moscow Region, the temporary resident will not be able to work in the city of Moscow, since these are two different federal subjects of Russia, even though there are practically no borders separating them. Therefore, it is important to decide on where you want to work before you start your application for a TRP
  • Moreover, keep in mind that an employer who has signed a labor agreement with a foreign national is obliged to notify the Federal Tax Service. Unfortunately, not all employers are familiar with this rule; therefore you should inform them about it when you sign your employment contract.

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