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New Regulations for Foreign Experts in Israel

New Regulations for Foreign Experts in Israel

January 19, 2016

 

After along period of internal discussions between several Israeli government authorities, a new regulation for the employment of foreign employees has been formally announced today, with the immediate effect.   

 

The new regulation makes several changes on the current regulations. The following is the list of changes to the current process in terms of both professional and administrative processes. 

 

After along period of internal discussions between several Israeli government authorities, a new regulation for the employment of foreign employees has been formally announced today, with the immediate effect.   
 
The new regulation makes several changes on the current regulations. The following is the list of changes to the current process in terms of both professional and administrative processes. 
 
1.  The regulation distinguishes between expert professions that requires academic qualifications, and those who do not. For both categories there is a need to pay double the average salary, however the regulations determine that for those who do not require an academic education the employer:  
 

a) Must pay the salary to an Israeli Bank in the name of the expat; 

 
b) Provide a contract issued by an Israeli lawyer confirming that the expat's contract of employment in the home country complies with the Israeli labor law, and the employer's obligation under the regulations;
 
c) Upon extension of the permit in this sub category, there will be a need to provide copies of wire transfers to the account by the employer, as well as bank confirmation that there is no party, but for the employee, that can transfer or withdraw sums from the account.
 
 

2. Only dependents of expert professions that require academic qualifications will be allowed stay in Israel where the employment is beyond 3 months. For those expert professions that do not require academic qualifications the decision is discretionary. For duration below 3 months, dependents will not be allowed to stay in Israel.

 

3.  The Ministry of Interior may require a higher than double the average salary for professions in which the average salary is higher than double the general average salary.

 

4. Application for a work permit extension should be submitted at least 60 days before the expiration of the current employee's work visa.

 

 5. Extraordinary well justified applications for work beyond 5 years and 3 months from first day of employment in Israel must be submitted at least 6 months prior to the start date of the assignment or expiration of the current visa. Otherwise the employee, if already working in Israel (i.e. extension process), will need to depart from Israel upon expiration of the current visa, and return only after approval of the extension. 

 

6. The foreign expert will have to depart from Israel no later than 30 days after the expiration of the work visa. During the period, the employee is not allowed to work in Israel, but may dedicate his time to making arrangements for departure. 

 

7.  The regulation sets a time frame for the process: the application will be initially checked to verify that all documents are provided within 21 days, and a decision will be made within an additional 30 days.

 

 8. Any significant change in the work of an expat should be reported to the Ministry of Interior within 7 work days. The regulations do not specify what amounts to a significant change, but it will certainly include, inter alia, change is salary (decrease & increase), location of the work, job description, change in management structure, completion of assignment (early departure), resignation of an employee, layoff of an employee etc. 

 

9. Employee and dependents passport validity must be for at least 1 year and 3 months from the beginning of the process. Previously the regulation required 2 years and 3 months validity.

 

10. Upon process of the visa to be sent to the consulate, the Ministry of Interior is now instructed to check that the visa applicant left Israel with no overstays, as well as the specific employee entries and departures from Israel, especially in the previous 12 months prior to the submission of the application. By doing this the Ministry of Interior is intending to eliminate the issuance of visas to those who stayed and worked in Israel for durations prior to the visa process. It is therefore recommended that visits in Israel prior to the work visa process will be limited to those employees expected to work.   

 

11. Applications sponsored by a foreign company must provide a notarized Power of Attorney that have been certified by the Israeli Consulate abroad, authorizing the Israeli representative (lawyer) to act on the company's behalf for the submission of the work permit and visa. 

 

12. The regulation sets out the committee structure and personnel, and holds that decisions can be made by email or telephone, apart from normal committee meetings. The committee has the discretion to forward the application to other governments Ministries or bodies, to obtain their opinion on a specific application. 

 

13. Upon visa processing at the Consulate, the applicant will have to provide a Police Clearance issued in the last 12 months, as well as medical clearance conducted at a local clinic or hospital accredited by the relevant Israeli Consulate. The Consulate is authorized to ask for any additional documents as they see fit. 

 

14. Entry into Israel following consular processing will have to be done through Ben-Gurion Airport. 

  

The new regulations certainly tightens the criteria for the submission of applications, and it is expected that within the near future, the Ministry of Interior will issue clarifications as to several issues not specified within the regulations first version.   Subject to clarification from the Ministry a complete chart providing a comparison will be made available upon request.

 

The content herein is provided for information purposes only. 

 


This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your client manager at Kan-Tor & Acco or send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   about-us

    

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