Global Immigration Updates
MALAYSIA: Labour Department Registration Required
All employers who wish to hire and employ any worker are required to update the work locations and employment information here, within 90 days from the date of any change.
Employers need to complete a registration form and manually submit this at the nearest Labour Department (Jabatan Tenaga Kerja) where the company is located (it is advised to bring two copies). A copy of the acknowledgement from the Labour Department must be submitted in support of any Pass application.
Any employer who fails to register and update or provides false information may be fined up to RM10,000 if convicted.
RUSSIA: HQS Salary Notifications due by 30 April 2021
Employers of highly-qualified specialists (HQS) in Russia have until 30 April 2021 to submit salary notifications for the first quarter of 2021.
The reported salary amount should be no less than the minimum level set for HQS (standard conditions):
- 167,000 RUB per calendar month;
- 501,000 RUB per quarter (if there was a break in work during the reported period).Non-notification or violation of the established notification form or procedure leads to administrative fines imposed on employers:
- officials – from 35,000 RUB to 70,000 RUB;
- legal entities – from 400,000 RUB to 1,000,000 RUB.
Failure to pay the salary in the minimum amount set for HQS may result in a ban on the company employing new HQS employees for 2 years.
SOUTH KOREA: Residence Permit Validity to be Limited by Passport Validity
Effective 1 July 2021, the maximum validity of residence permits will be granted only within the validity of the applicant’s passport.
Those intending to submit a new or renewal application for an Alien Registration Card (ARC) will first need to check whether their passport has enough remaining validity to cover their intended period of stay in South Korea.
The new policy is intended to minimize the number of foreign residents paying penalty fees for not reporting their passport renewals within the required two-week reporting period.
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: Two New Visas Announced
The UAE has launched two new visa categories: a remote work visa, and a five-year multiple-entry tourist visa.
The one-year (renewable) remote work visa enables professionals of any nationality to live and work remotely from the UAE even though their employment is in another country. This is an expansion of the Dubai-only virtual work visa announced earlier this year.
Applicants require health insurance covering UAE and a passport with a minimum six-month validity. They also require either proof of employment with a contract valid for at least one year and a salary of at least $5000 per month, or proof of company ownership for at least one year and an income of at least $5000 per month.
The multiple-entry tourist visa will be granted for five years without the need for a sponsor/guarantor. It is available to any nationality, and allows unlimited entries. For each entry, the visa holder can stay in the country for up to 90 days, extendable by another 90.
UNITED STATES: FY2022 H-1B Lottery Completed
On 30 March 2021, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it had completed the random lottery for allocating H-1B numbers among the properly submitted registrations under both the H-1B regular cap and the H-1B US Master’s Cap.
USCIS has also now completed the process of notifying those selected. Registrations selected in the lottery will be eligible to file an H-1B petition beginning 1 April 2021. Petitioners will have 90 days to file selected petitions.
Registrants’ USCIS online accounts will now show one of the following for each individual applicant’s registration:
Submitted (The registration has been submitted and is eligible for selection) Selected (Selected to file an H-1B cap petition) Denied Invalidated-Failed Payment
Properly submitted registrations that have not been selected will remain in the system as valid registrations with their status designated as “Submitted” for the remainder of the fiscal year. These remaining submissions will be available for selection in the future if the current fiscal year cap reopens. The cap could reopen if a relatively high number of registrations do not result in actual filings with USCIS during the 90-day filing window or H-1B petitions are denied. Such selections did occur in the prior fiscal year.
BELGIUM: Antwerp Authorities Invite UK National Residents to Make Appointment for M Card Application
The Immigration Office in Brussels has announced that British nationals (and their family members) living in Antwerp or Deurne who qualify for a status of beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement (because they were already resident in Belgium before 31 December 2020) and already hold a valid residence document (E card or F card) can now make an appointment to apply for an electronic residence card (M card).
- In general, Belgian municipalities are sending invitations to qualifying British nationals to submit applications, but in Antwerp and Deurne qualifying British nationals should not wait for an invitation to make an appointment and begin the process.
- Qualifying applicants should send an email with a copy of all printed pages of the valid passport and a copy of the E card (or F card for family reunification with a British national) and will be notified when they can book an appointment.
- This procedure does not yet apply to applicants for N cards (for local border traffic).
- On submission, applicants will receive a temporary certificate of application covering all their residence rights until a decision has been made.
- Until 31 March 2022, applicants can also continue to use their former valid residence document (E/E+/F/F+) in Belgium pending the submission of their application and a decision. These former residence documents will be proof that they are protected under the Withdrawal Agreement during the application period, but they do not cover any rights reserved to EU citizens.
- After 31 March 2022, all former residence documents will automatically lose their validity but applicants can continue to use the certificate of application for beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement until a decision has been taken.
IRAQ: New Visa on Arrival Scheme for Nationals of 37 Countries
The Iraqi government has lifted the requirement to obtain entry visas prior to arrival for citizens of 37 countries, including the European Union member states and permanent members of the UN security council.
Citizens of the following countries will be eligible for a visa on arrival: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States.
The visa on arrival is valid for stays of up to 60 days but cannot be converted into a multi-entry visa or residency. Permitted activities include:
- Attending internal meetings and contract negotiation;
- Attending or participating in a conference and seminar;
- Exploring business and investment opportunities;
- Attending or receiving training;
- Engaging legal firms for entity formation.
NIGERIA: New Document Requirement for Resident Permit Renewals
Effective 6 April 2021, all applications for resident permit renewals must be supported by evidence of payment of tax.
Employers who may be affected are encouraged to contact a Newland Chase immigration specialist for case-specific advice.