Based on Vietnam labor and immigration laws, all foreign workers working long term in Vietnam are required to apply for a work permit or work permit exemption certificate and an appropriate visa suitable for the purpose of entry. The Vietnam visa and work permit are two separate documents that are used for different purposes and issued by two different authorities of Vietnam. Vietnam work permit granted by provincial Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Welfare allows a foreign worker to take a job in Vietnam. In this article, we would like to share, guide a step by step instruction to obtain a work permit in Vietnam 2020.



Work permit or work permit exemption, short term business visa and Temporary Residence Card are one of 3 important documents for foreign workers who work in Vietnam. A long term visa of Vietnam can be replaced by a temporary residence card (“TRC”) which is issued to a foreign worker who is granted a Vietnam work permit or work permit exemption certificate for a certain length of time. If a foreigner plans to stay and work complying with Vietnam laws, a work permit and a visa or a TRC shall be required.


Step 1: Registration of the need of using foreign labors

A legal entity in Vietnam must submit a Form No 1 – Explanation of foreign labor usage plan to Provincial Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs “DOLISA” at least 30 days before the day foreign labors anticipated to work for Vietnam’s companies, contractors or representative offices,…It takes 10 working days to get an approval letter on the need of using foreign workers from the DOLISA.


Step 2: Work Permit Application Vietnam and Issuance

Depending on the working form as labour contract or internal transfer, the position, job title that the Vietnamese entity approved by provincial Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Welfares for foreign labor in step 1 mentioned above.


       ► Requirements for all foreign individuals

All foreign individuals who move to Vietnam to work, they must have documents proving their work experience, educational qualifications, good health and no criminal record. These conditions and requirements are based on the Vietnam labor law. Here are the requirements that foreign workers need to prepare step by step to apply for a Vietnamese work permit:

  1. Letter of work experience or expertise certificate confirmed by former employers (foreign company outside of Vietnam) at least 3 years in the relevant position that foreign labors are targeting. Both the work experience or expertise certificate must have consular legalization in order to be used in Vietnam.
  2. Educational qualification i.e. bachelor, master, doctorate or appropriate qualifications vary accordingly to the job position and job title that Vietnamese company applying for work permit in Vietnam;
  3. Foreign Police Clearance Certificate is valid for 6 months from the date the certificate was issued and it must have consular legalization or Vietnam Police Certificate/ Vietnam Criminal Record
  4. Health check certificate or medical certificate issued by a competent foreign or Vietnamese hospitals or clinics are valid for 12 months from the date of signing to the application date;
  5. 2 recent color photos with size 4x6cm (white background, front, bareheaded, without sunglasses), taken within 06 months prior to the application date.
  6. Photocopy of the passport with full pages on A4 paper size


       ► Requirements for Vietnamese Company

  1. The written position approval on the need of using foreign workers from the provincial Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Welfare.
  2. Request for issuance of a Vietnam work permit from the employer in accordance with regulations of the Ministry of Labor – Invalids and Social Affairs;
  3. Notarized true copy of business registration certificate; or investment registration certificate; or representative office license; or contractor permit license;
  4. Notarized true copy of power of attorney if the signer is not a legal representative of the company.


Step 3: Submission of original copy of labor contract

A signed labour contract between the foreign labor and the company must be submitted to the provincial Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Welfares where foreign labor is going to work within 05 working days upon the date of signing the labor contract



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  • How to apply for Extension of Temporary Residence Card
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For further information please contact:
Discovery Indochina Travel Co., Ltd
5th Floor |
Platinum Building | 145 Dien Bien Phu Street, District 1 | Ho Chi Minh City | Vietnam
Tel: 028 39102358 | 028 39102359  Mobile: 0938228856 | 0906640505 |