IMPACT — MEDIUM

The Bulgarian government has eased employment requirements for some third-country nationals.

Key Points:

  • Foreign nationals intending to work in a highly skilled profession must have a “high professional qualification,” including one of the following:
    • A higher education degree equivalent to three years of study.
    • A document proving that they have at least five years of work experience equivalent to a higher education degree that is related to the job offer.
  • More information regarding the updated employment requirements for non-EU nationals intending to work in a highly skilled profession is available here.

BAL Analysis: Bulgarian authorities updated the employment requirements for non-EU nationals intending to work in a highly skilled profession to ensure third-country nationals are qualified for their positions.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice Group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

Copyright © 2023 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries, please contact copyright@bal.com.

IMPACT – MEDIUM

The Bulgarian government has lifted all COVID-related travel restrictions for those entering the country.

Key Points:

  • As of May 1, individuals who are traveling to Bulgaria no longer face COVID-related travel restrictions.
  • Travelers are no longer required to show COVID-19 vaccination certificates, recovery certificates or medical examinations when entering the country. Travelers also no longer have to test for COVID-19 before or after arrival or undergo a mandatory quarantine.
  • Authorities have lifted the entry ban on foreign nationals from all third-countries.

Additional Information: In case of new virus variant, an “emergency brake” can be applied to the lifting of the COVID-19 travel restrictions. More information regarding the Bulgaria’s decision to lift COVD-19 travel restrictions is available here.

BAL Analysis: COVID-19 travel restrictions will no longer apply to those traveling to the Bulgaria. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and BAL will provide additional updates as information becomes available.

 This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

Copyright © 2022 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact copyright@bal.com.

The Bulgarian government has created a COVID-19 “Dark Red” country list, imposing strict limitations on travel from the 23 countries on the list.

Key Points:

  • Bulgarian authorities classified Denmark, France, Israel, Switzerland and 19 other countries to its newly created “Dark Red” countries list. A full list is available here.
  • Individuals, regardless of their nationality, traveling from “Dark Red” countries must have proof that they are fully vaccinated against or have previously recovered from COVID-19 and a negative PCR test result that was taken within 72 hours before arrival.
    • Individuals who have proof that they have received a booster shot are exempted from the PCR test requirement.
    • Bulgarian citizens, permanent, long-term, or continuous residence in Bulgaria who do not meet the above requirements are required to quarantine for 10 days. Quarantines can be ended if an individual receives a negative PCR test taken at least 72 hours after arrival.
  • The U.S. is currently on the “Red Country” list. Entry requirements for travelers from the U.S. is available here.

Additional Information: A complete list of entry requirements and exemption is available here. A list of green, red and orange countries is available here.

BAL Analysis: The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and BAL will provide additional updates as information becomes available.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

Copyright © 2022 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries, please contact copyright@bal.com.

The Bulgarian government has extended its entry requirements for travelers from green, orange and red countries until March 31.

Key Points:

  • Green and Orange country requirements. Individuals must have a valid EU digital COVID certificate or equivalent to enter the country.
    • Individuals who do not have this documentation must quarantine for 10 days; individuals can end their quarantine by receiving a negative PCR or antigen test taken no more than 72 hours before arrival.
  • Red country requirements. Bulgarian citizens, permanent residents, long-term residents, individuals with continuous residence, EU/EEA citizens, including Switzerland and the U.K., and family members of the aforementioned can enter the country, among others.
    • Travelers must have a valid digital EU COVID certificate or equivalent and a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival to enter the country.
    • Bulgarian citizens, permanent residents, long-term residents, individuals with continuous residence and their family members can enter the country without a valid digital EU COVID certificate or equivalent but must quarantine for 10 days upon arrival.
    • Individuals can end their quarantine by receiving a negative PCR test taken no more than 72 hours after arrival.

Additional Information: A complete list of entry requirements and exemptions is available here. Currently, Romania and the Vatican are on the green list; Australia, Canada, the U.S. and the majority of the EU, among others, are on the red list; and countries not on the green or red list are designated as orange. A list of green, red and orange countries is available here.

BAL Analysis: The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and BAL will provide additional updates as information becomes available.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

Copyright © 2022 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact copyright@bal.com.

High Priority

What is the Brexit news? Bulgaria has published plans that would administer the status of U.K. nationals under a no-deal Brexit.

Key Points:

  • Reregistration period. If the U.K. leaves the EU without a withdrawal deal, U.K. nationals and their families currently residing in Bulgaria will have the opportunity to maintain their current status. A special procedure of reregistration (“preregistratsia”) will be introduced and available until Dec. 31, 2020. U.K. nationals and their family members will need to submit their reregistration applications in person at the Migration Office or at one of the local police stations. They will need to include supporting documents currently required for EU Residence Certificate applications.
  • Residence permits.After the reregistration, the authorities will first issue a temporary residence permit and then, approximately a month afterward, a residence permit valid for five years and renewable. The application fee will be the same as the fee for the EU Residence Certificate applications.
  • Non-EU family members. Non-EU family members will be covered under the same “reregistration” period and will be able to retain their status.
  • New arrivals. K nationals arriving in Bulgaria after Brexit will be considered third-country nationals and will fall under the scope of the provisions of the Law of Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria (currently under revision).

BAL Analysis: The U.K. is set to leave the European Union and the U.K. Parliament has yet to pass a withdrawal agreement. Although the EU granted the U.K. a Brexit extension, it is still possible that it will leave the EU without a deal. Bulgaria’s plan provides some certainty to non-EU family members of U.K. nationals, as they will retain their current status until Dec. 31, 2019 and will be able to apply for an alternative permit type in the case of a no-deal Brexit.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network partner Matrix Relocations in Bulgaria. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

Copyright © 2019 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact copyright@bal.com.

IMPACT – MEDIUM

What is the change? Bulgaria has implemented the EU’s posted workers directive, imposing new notification and documentation requirements on foreign companies sending employees to work in Bulgaria.

What does the change mean? A notification of secondment must be submitted by Feb. 10 for all workers currently on secondment in Bulgaria, regardless of their nationality. For new secondments, notification must be filed before the first day of work in Bulgaria. A new notification must be submitted within seven days when there are changes to the posting details. Companies will also be required to keep signed letters of assignment, payslips, timesheets and notifications of secondment on file and available for inspection in Bulgaria at all times during the assignment and for a year after the assignment ends.

  • Implementation time frame: Feb. 10.
  • Who is affected: Foreign companies, including EU/EEA companies, sending employees to work in Bulgaria.
  • Business impact: The changes add administrative steps and document retention requirements to the process of sending employees to work in Bulgaria.
  • Next steps: Affected businesses should become familiar with the new rules and be sure they are in compliance with all new requirements.

Background: Bulgaria implemented the new rules pursuant to the EU’s Enforcement Directive on Posted Workers. An online notification system is expected to be set up eventually, but for now, the notification requirement must be completed at the local office of the General Labour Inspectorate. Companies sending employees to Bulgaria must designate a person in Bulgaria who is able to make documents available upon request. Relevant documents—letters of assignment, payslips, timesheets and notifications of secondment—should be kept for at least a year after the secondment ends. For employees currently on assignment, all relevant documents from Jan. 6 forward should be retained.

BAL Analysis: Affected companies should make sure they follow Bulgaria’s new secondment procedures and documentation requirements. BAL is available to assist in the notification process or with any questions about what is required to stay in compliance with the new rules.

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

Copyright © 2017 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact copyright@bal.com.