Russia – Representative Offices Can Hire Highly-Qualified Specialists from 2015

Russia – Representative Offices Can Hire Highly-Q...

A recent law will allow the Russian representative offices of foreign legal entities to hire foreign nationals under the highly-qualified specialist regime. Up to now, only Russian legal entities and branches of foreign legal entities were allowed to benefit from the rules under this regime, which include a “fast-tracked” work permit process and flexible length of time to work.

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The president of the Russian Federation signed a new law on 6 May 2014, that will allow representative offices of foreign legal entities to hire foreign nationals under the highly-qualified specialist regime (HQS).1  Up to now, only Russian legal entities and branches of foreign legal entities were allowed to benefit from the rules under the HQS regime.

Why This Matters

This expansion of the HQS regime means that representative offices of foreign companies operating in Russia, under certain conditions, will be able to avail of the rules for employing highly qualified specialists.  Particularly, they will enjoy a “fast-track” work permit process (generally 14 working days to obtain the permit as opposed to several months for a regular work permit).  They will also have more flexibility with respect to the length of time the HQS employee is permitted to stay and work in Russia.  Under the HQS rules, such employees under valid work permits and visas may stay in Russia for up to three years and can work across Russian regions, whereas employees under regular work visas are only eligible to work for one year and are limited geographically within one region of the Russian Federation.  Moreover, the employee hired under the HQS regime will be exempt from submitting a Russian language and civilization certificate to obtain the requisite work permit. 

 

From 1 January 2015, accredited representative offices of foreign legal entities operating in Russia and an expanded list of employers may apply to the authorities to employ highly qualified specialists as long as:

  • the annual salary for the employee is at least RUB 2,000,000 (as at 25 June 2014);
  • the employer has secured health insurance coverage for the employee, but also for family members, where family members accompany the employee; and
  • the employer has not been charged with any violations of the rules for employing foreign nationals at the time of making the application for the HQS employee.

 

footnote

1 Federal Law “On changes into separate legislative decrees of the Russian Federation” N 106-FZ. In particular, the law amends Article 13.2 of Federal Law “On the legal status of foreign citizens in the Russian Federation” dated 25 June 2002 N 115-FZ.

(For a related story on immigration rules in Russia, see Flash International Executive Alert 2013-118, 22 August 2013.)

 

For further information or assistance, please contact your local KPMG IES or People Services professional, or one of the following professionals with the KPMG International member firm in Russia:

Alevtina Borisova, Partner

Aborisova@kpmg.ru, tel. +7 (495) 937 44 77 (ext. 12987)

Anna Salnikova, Senior Manager

ASalnikova@kpmg.ru , tel. +7 (495) 937 44 77 (ext. 15088)

Olga Kiramova, Senior Manager

OKiramova@kpmg.ru, tel. +7 (495) 937 44 77 (ext. 12406)

The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Russia. The information contained herein is of a general nature and based on authorities that are subject to change. Applicability of the information to specific situations should be determined through consultation with your tax adviser.

Flash Alert is an Global Mobility Services publication of KPMG LLPs Washington National Tax practice. The KPMG logo and name are trademarks of KPMG International. KPMG International is a Swiss cooperative that serves as a coordinating entity for a network of independent member firms. KPMG International provides no audit or other client services. Such services are provided solely by member firms in their respective geographic areas. KPMG International and its member firms are legally distinct and separate entities. They are not and nothing contained herein shall be construed to place these entities in the relationship of parents, subsidiaries, agents, partners, or joint venturers. No member firm has any authority (actual, apparent, implied or otherwise) to obligate or bind KPMG International or any member firm in any manner whatsoever. The information contained in herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavor to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.

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