What is the change? Russia is requiring foreign nationals applying for highly qualified specialist work permits to have at least 3 ½ years remaining on their passports.

What does the change mean? Foreign nationals who have less than 3 ½ years on their passports and who are in need of an HQS work permit should renew their passports as soon as possible.

  • Implementation timeframe: The change went into effect the week of March 23.
  • Visas/permits affected: Work permits for highly qualified specialists.
  • Who is affected: Foreign nationals applying for HQS work permits, including those applying for extensions.
  • Impact on processing times: Processing times may be significantly delayed if applicants do not have 3 ½ years remaining on their passports.

Background: Russia’s recent move to enforce a 3 ½-year passport rule may be an effort to limit the number of applications it processes. HQS work permits are valid for three years; by requiring 3 ½ years of passport validity, Russian authorities can cut down on the number of foreign nationals who need to renew HQS work permits because of an expired passport.

BAL Analysis: Foreign nationals applying for HQS work permits should check their passports and renew them if necessary.

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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