The first step, while planning an overseas journey on official purposes is the work permit. The formality to ensure travel of the employee overseas begins with the application of the work permit. While applying for the permit is the first step, more often than not, it is not issued and received by the applicant until a few days before the expected date of departure.
By that time, all other activities such as booking of plane tickets, accommodation and travel insurance are completed. After everything is done and the permit gets rejected, it seems like a colossal waste of time and money.
It is wise to prepare a checklist of not only the to-do list but also what not to do to guarantee that the work permit is issued without any errors.
1. Difference between an employer and a contractor
Many organizations deploy employees in various capacities. They could take the role of a project consultant or be on rolls of the company for a specific period of time. In order to ensure the presence of an employee overseas, some companies prefer the role of an independent contractor as opposed to an employee. This is to avoid complications such as benefits and tax withholdings. The risks involved in taking the wrong visa for the resource is high and could lead to the paperwork being rejected.
One must understand the issues that could crop up when the work permit is taken under the wrong category. An independent contractor cannot be mistaken for an employee. It is an error that cannot be forgiven.
2. Issue time
Paperwork can be very time-consuming. The lead time varies for different work permits for different countries. Misjudging the time taken can lead to the work permit being rendered useless when the requirement is urgent. This is an error that should be avoided by making sure that an adequate background check is done in advance. One must be aware of the lead time of the paperwork for different countries to be prepared for any urgent secondment.
Many countries are currently insisting on ensuring that the local citizens are given priority for placement before an expat is being allowed to apply. Companies are given restrictions on how many expats to employ. The quota plays a significant role in a work permit being accepted or rejected. If a prospect does not look into these numbers in advance, chances are that the work permit will be rejected by the consulate. These numbers might not be available publicly and will vary from country to country. Traditionally, the number of expats cannot exceed that of the local nationals. This might require the assistance of a professional partner to investigate before applying for a work permit.
4. The expiry date of issued work permit and re-entry restrictions
When a work permit is issued, attention must be paid not only to the expiry date but also the date by which requests for renewal should be made. For instance, some work permits must be renewed no later than 28 days before the date of expiry. If this date is missed, the work permit renewal will be rejected. Such errors can be avoided when all dates pertaining to the work permit are tracked continually.
There are also restrictions on re-entry after the expiry of the work permit. When the resource has maxed out the number of allotted years with a visa, the procedure states that he goes back to his home country for a specific time before re-entry is permitted. If the allotted time has not passed, work permits will be rejected.
5. Error in data - department of work
In a rush to apply for a work permit, data submitted might be wrong leading to its rejection. The following are some of the more common work permit errors
- Incorrect application: Ignorance about the process or misinterpretation of the guidelines can lead to incorrect information on the application.
- Insufficient documents: Most applications get rejected due to inappropriate or incorrect papers being submitted. Sometimes, original documents are required as well.
- Financial documents: Some countries require proof of sufficient funds in the bank balance without which the paperwork does not get accepted.
- Clarity about the intent of visit: If the exact purpose of the visit along with the correct details of the job role is not submitted, the application cannot be justified.
Not all rejections are permanent. The application can be rectified and refiled. Ensure proper documentation along with sufficient paperwork to support them. Give us a call and we can walk you through the proper procedures to be adhered to. Ensure that you have a smooth secondment to a brighter future. We at GOHLS can be your partner and guide to bring you to the global platform.