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Friday, August 19, 2011

Applying for Work Permit in Kenya

WORK/ENRTY PERMITS IN KENYA
Types of Work Permits and Requirements
Introduction
Work permit is a legal document that one is require to have in order to work in a foreign country.
The Kenyan Immigration Act prohibits a foreigner to reside, work or engage in any employment or business in Kenya without a valid work or entry permit issued by the Immigration Department.
Applications for work/entry permit to work or reside in Kenya may be considered when submitted by prospective employers on behalf of their prospective employees. For foreigners intending to be employed in Kenya, their work permit may not normally be approved unless the prospective employer(s) can show evidence that they have been unable to fill the particular post(s) due to lack of suitably qualified personnel in the Kenya Labour Market. Those seeking to work in Kenya must therefore ensure that their prospective employers have secured appropriate Entry/Work Permits before they proceed to Kenya.
For Foreigners who wish to engage either alone or in Partnership in Business, specific trade or profession would have to furnish evidence that they have obtained or are assured of obtaining relevant licence(s), Registration or other authority that may be necessary in order to engage in the contemplated business, trade or profession. In addition, they would be required to prove that they have sufficient capital derived from sources outside Kenya which is certain to be remitted to Kenya for the purpose.

For those foreigners who have attained retirement age and wish to emigrate to Kenya may make application for issue of Entry/Work Permit under Class K.
They should have in their own right and at their full and feel disposition on assured annual income derived from sources outside Kenya and will be remitted to Kenya or derived from property situated, or a pension or annuity payable from a sufficient investment capital to produce such assured income that will be brought into and invested in Kenya. Applicants for Entry/Work Permit(s) of this class must undertake not to accept paid employment of any kind should they be granted Entry/Work of this class.
Below are classes of work entry/ permits that can be granted under Kenyan Law and the brief requirements thereof
Class A: A person who is offered specific employment by a specific employer who is qualified to undertake that employment, and whose engagement in that employment will be of benefit to Kenya. Further details on this class of work permit are given below.
Class B: A person who is offered specific employment by the Government of Kenya, the East African Community or any other person or authority under the control of the Government or the Community, and whose engagement in that employment will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class C: A person who is offered specific employment under an approved technical aid scheme under the United Nations Organisation or some other approved agency (not being an exempted person under section 4(3) of this Act), and whose engagement in that employment will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class D: A person, being the holder of a dependant's pass, who is offered specific employment by specific employer, whose engagement in that employment will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class E: A person who is a member of a missionary society approved by the Government of Kenya, and whose presence in Kenya will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class F: A person who intends to engage, whether alone or in partnership, in the business of agriculture or animal husbandry in Kenya, and who:
(a) has acquired, or has received all permission that may be necessary in order to acquire, an interest in land of sufficient size and suitability for the purpose; and
(b) has in his own right and at his full and free disposition sufficient capital and other resources for the purpose, and whose engagement in that business will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class G: A person who intends to engage, whether alone or in partnership, in prospecting for minerals or mining in Kenya, and who:
(a) has obtained, or is assured of obtaining any prospecting or mining right or licence that may be necessary for the purpose; and
(b) has in his own right and at his full and free disposition sufficient capital and other resources for the purpose, and whose engagement in that business will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class H: A person who intends to engage, whether alone or in partnership, in a specific trade, business or profession (other than a prescribed profession) in Kenya, and who:
(a) has obtained, or is assured of obtaining, any licence, registration or other authority or permission that may be necessary for the purpose; and
(b) has in his own right and at his full and free disposition sufficient capital and other resources for the purpose (usually not less than KShs. 10,000,000/-) , and whose engagement in that trade, business or profession will be to the benefit of Kenya.
Class I: A person who intends to engage, whether alone or in partnership, in a specific manufacture in Kenya, and who:
(a) has obtained, or is assured of obtaining, any licence, registration or other authority or permission that may be necessary for the purpose;
(b) has in his own right and at his full and free disposition sufficient capital and other resources for the purpose, and whose engagement in that manufacture will be to the benefit of Kenya.
Class J: A member of a prescribed profession who intends to practise that profession, whether alone or in partnership, in Kenya, and who:
(a) possesses the prescribed qualifications under the relevant Kenyan Laws; and
(b) has in his own right and at his full and free disposition sufficient capital and other resources for the purpose, and whose practice of that profession will be to the benefit of Kenya.
Class K: A person who:
(a) is not less than 21 years of age; and
(b) has in his own right and at his full and free disposition assured annual income of not less than the prescribed amount being an income that is assured, and that is derived from sources other than any such employment, occupation, trade, business or profession as is referred to in the description of any of the classes specified in the Schedule to the Act, and being an income that either
(i) is derived from sources outside, and will be remitted to Kenya; or
(ii) is derived from property situated, or a pension or annuity payable from, sources in Kenya; or
(iii) will be derived from a sufficient investment capital to produce such assured income that will be brought into and invested in Kenya; and
(c) undertakes not to accept paid employment of any kind should be he be granted an Entry Permit of this class, and whose presence in Kenya will be of benefit to Kenya.
Class L: A person who is not in employment, whether paid or unpaid, and who under the repealed Acts was issued with resident's certificate, or who would have on application been entitled to the issue of such certificate, or who has held an Entry Permit or Entry Permits (whether issued under this Act or the repealed Acts or both) of any of the foregoing classes of Entry Permits A-K for a continuous period of not less than ten years immediately before the date of application, and whose presence in Kenya will be of benefit to Kenya.
Applying for a CLASS A WORK PERMIT
1. Requirements
a) Immigration Form 3 to be completed and signed by the employer;
b) Letter from the employer confirming the duration of the employment, and making out a case why the subject is the most suitable person for the job as opposed to a Kenyan. Sometimes, the Immigration department may require proof that the position has been advertised in the local press and a statement from the employer that he cannot find a qualified Kenyan candidate. Moreover, the letter should demonstrate how the presence of the employee will be beneficial to Kenya (e.g. setting up the Organisation, expanding its operations, creating of employment for Kenyans) and must give details of the Kenyans who will be trained by the foreigner.
c) Form 22 which should be completed by the Employer;
d) copy of passport;
e) 2 passport size photos;
f) Detailed CV, signed by the employee and dated;
g) Original and copies of academic and professional certificates (the originals are returned after verification).
2. Process
The application is forwarded to the Immigration Department which will consider it in a meeting. If the application is approved, a Notification of Approval is issued which will state the documents to be availed to facilitate the issuance of the Work Permit. Normally, these are:-
a) a bankers’ cheque for the Government fees payable (KShs. 100,000/=) in favour of the Principal Immigration Officer; and
b) Security Bond from an insurance or bank (KShs. 100,000/=).

Once the Work Permit is issued or renewed, it is not released until the applicant attends to registration as an alien at the Immigration Department. The Work Permit is thereafter endorsed in the passport and an application made for a Re-Entry Pass which is endorsed on the passport. The application for Re-Entry Pass is issued as a matter of course at the counter of the Immigration Department and is valid up to a maximum of two (2) years. The fee payable is KShs. 200/= per year.
The whole process normally takes 4-6 weeks.
SPECIAL PASSES
For any non-Kenyan who may need to come into Kenya to work for short periods, he should obtain a Special Pass which will enable him to work in Kenya for a temporary period of 3 months (renewable twice). The requirements for a special pass are a copy of the certificate of registration of the employer and a letter from the employer indicating what the person will be doing in Kenya.
Cost
We usually assist foreign clients to apply for work permits/ entry permits at a fee.

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