Work Permits for Foreign Researchers

    Work Permits for Foreign Researchers

    Foreign Experts Procedure No. 5.3.0041 allows for the issuance of a work permit and work visa for a foreign researcher participating in the EU Framework Program, which the State of Israel joined in accordance with Article 9 of Government Decision 2292 of January 15, 2017 as part of the national plan to increase skilled manpower for the high-tech industry.

    This unique program allows companies which are not institutions of higher education to employ a foreign researcher, as long as the research is approved as part of the EU Research and Development Program by the Israel Innovation Authority.

    The employing company must pay wages to the foreign researcher in accordance with the rules of the above framework plan and its procedures, as well as in accordance with Israeli labor law.

    The application process for a foreign researcher work permit consists of several steps:

    Step 1: Submission of an application for a work permit in the Work Permits Unit of the Population, Immigration and Border Crossing Authority in Jerusalem.

    Step 2: The foreign researcher is allowed to enter Israel with the issued work permit, and can start working immediately.

    Step 3: Being issued a work permit in the researcher’s passport at the Ministry of Interior within 48 hours of arrival in Israel.

    The steps above relate to the standard and orderly procedure- however, depending on different circumstances and evolving policies, the steps in the process may be shortened or lengthened, and at each stage a requirement for additional documents, reports and relevant information for the Authority may be received. In addition, most of the procedures involve the payment of government fees.

    A researcher employed under the EU Framework Program may apply for a 2-year visa for his/her children up to the age of 18, and for a B / 1 residence and work permit for his/her spouse, in accordance with the conditions set out in Procedure No. 5.3. (This is the Procedure for handling applications for employment or for the granting of a residence permit to researchers and lecturers in institutions of higher education who are on the path to being granted tenure, as well as to their families.)

    Please note:

    Working in Israel without a valid work visa is a legal violation which may result in severe penalties, including: substantial fines (more than 5,000 NIS per business day), the arrest and deportation of the foreign expert (which may result in the possible impairment of the foreign expert’s ability to be employed in other countries), and even criminal proceedings against company executives in Israel and abroad.

    Referring to a law firm that specializes in Israeli commercial immigration law (and specifically in the immigration of foreign experts) will allow the visa applicant to be issued a work visa quickly and professionally, and will significantly increase the chances of obtaining desired results.

    Are you interested in employing foreign experts in Israel? Contact us today, and we will be happy to assist you in obtaining the necessary permits and visas!


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