What is the change? Russia has set a new rule that requires foreign nationals applying for work permits in quota and quota-exempt positions to obtain a medical test at an approved clinic in Russia before applying for a visa from an overseas consulate.

What does the change mean? This will require that those foreign nationals make an extra trip to Russia on a business visa to get the required medical test.

  • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: Standard work permits.
  • Who is affected: Non-CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) foreign nationals applying for quota and quota-exempt positions.Highly-skilled workers are exempt from the new rule.
  • Impact on processing times: No direct impact, but the rule changewill have a significant impact on the lead time required for visa applications.
  • Business impact: The extratrip for foreign applicants will significantly impact the timing and cost of applying for visas.
  • Next steps: Businesses and assignees should plan several weeks in advance to obtain a medical test in-country at an approved clinic on a business visa. It takes approximately seven to eight weeks to obtain a business visa.

Background: Russia is in the process of overhauling its immigration laws. Effective immediately, the new rule requires standard work permit applicants to obtain a medical test at an approved clinic before applying for an entry visa. All of the authorized clinics on the current list are located only in Russia. In the past, foreign nationals could undergo the medical exam after arrival.

Under the new rule, foreign nationals will have to make a special trip on a business visa to undergo medical testing by an approved clinic in Russia, then fly back to their home country to submit the medical results with their application for an entry visa.

BAL Analysis: The rule change will add significant travel time, expense and inconvenience to standard work permit applications for quota and quota-exempt positions.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Russia. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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