How to Get a Work Permit in North Cyprus

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The TRNC law says that non-citizens need to get permits to work and live in the country. For example, when non-citizens enter the country, the authorities give them visitor visas that have a limited duration. They have to leave the country before the time limit, or, in some cases, they have to extend the time limit by contacting the authorities before it expires. If the time limit is exceeded, the person has to pay a penalty when they leave the country. People who leave without paying the penalty are banned from entering the country again.

To work in a TRNC company, they have to make the applications and get a “preliminary permit” on behalf of the person. This document can be issued after the person arrives in the country. The person then needs to get a “work permit” within 1 month at the latest. The person who does not have a legal permit to work is forbidden from working, and, if the person is working without permission, the Ministry will begin legal action against the company and the unauthorized employee will be deported and prohibited from re-entering to the country.

Application Procedure:

The foreign national applying for the permit must:

  1. Not have been deported from the TRNC previously
  2. Not have any criminal sanctions for any reason.

When the criteria mentioned above are met, the member company in need can begin the process of obtaining the legal permission by applying to CTBCA together with the necessary documents.

There are 4 main procedures within the scope of legal permits;

  1. Preliminary permit procedures
  2. Work transfer procedures
  3. Work permit procedures
  4. Work permit extension procedures

Foreign nationals who will be working in the TRNC are required to enter the country with a “preliminary permit” for them to obtain a work permit after they arrive in the TRNC.

Required Documents For Preliminary Permit:

  1. The newly dated “No Debt” document of the member company obtained from the Social Insurance Department
  2. Copy of employee’s passport

Important Notice: It is compulsory for the employee to be outside the TRNC to obtain a preliminary permit. The fact that the application has been made does not mean that the application will be approved. If there is no legal obstacle, the applications usually result in 3 or 4 working days.

Required documents for work permit

How to Get a Work Permit in North Cyprus

The employee must start work permit procedures within one (1) week at the latest after they have entered the TRNC with preliminary permission.

  • Preliminary permit of the employee
  • Passport
  • Identity card (or copy)
  • Company obtains “No Debt” document from the Social Insurance Department and makes and application to CTBCA.

The member company and the employee are required to complete the “health examinations” which are under the employee’s responsibility within the specified period. After entering the country, the employee must begin the work permit within 20 days at the latest; have all the necessary health checks from the hospitals or the laboratories determined by the Ministry, and submit to the CTBCA the report showing the health status.

The work permit lasts for 6 months or 1 year, depending on the request of the company.

How to extend work permit?

To extend work permit, apply 2 months before expiry or 3 months after you start your job. Required documents and processes are the same as the first time. If an employee wishes to work in another company while working in the TRNC, the company can transfer the current work permit. To start this process, an employee must inform the company where they were working and a work permit must be canceled. In addition, employees must have worked in TRNC for at least 6 months without interruption. Company must obtain work permit for employees if transfer is approved by Labor Permit Center under Ministry. For this purpose, a company starts the process by applying to CTBCA.

Student Work Permit

Students are required to have a “student work permit” to be able to work within the period of their study. Fortunately, students do not need Preliminary Permit.

In addition to the documents required for the student work permit applications, a newly dated (available for the term) student permission on the student’s passport, at least 3 months left before the expiry of the student permission. A student certificate for the current term, and the course schedule are required.

With the required documents, the member company can start the procedures by applying to CTBCA.

The Procedure For Third-Country Nationals

The process for the legal permits of third-country nationals includes a preliminary permit and a work permit after. In applications for preliminary permits, it is necessary for the person to be in the TRNC. Along with the required documents for the applications, the member company must submit the following:

  • Passport copy of the employee
  • Letter of guarantee including names of both employee and the employer
  • Written contract signed and sealed by the company
  • A4 Form obtained by Social Insurance Department of the name of the employer.

For third-country nationals, the preliminary permit approval period is at least 15 days. If the employee has entered the island and left within 3 days, a police investigation is not necessary and they can approve the application for preliminary permit within 3 or 4 days. However, if the person is not within this scope, they will be subject to a police investigation. Under our Law and the preliminary permit process lasts at least 15 days. It is therefore advisable for both companies and employees to consider the abovementioned periods before launching proceedings in order not to have any problems.

Afterwards, the way to follow is the same as the permit process stated in the above sections and a work permit is required after the person arrives on the island.

Family residence permit

Wives and children of employees with a work permit can get a residence permit if there’s no legal obstacle. It will be approved by the Ministry of Interior, not CTBCA anymore.

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