Brief Summary of Immigration Law by 3Iz2z07i

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									                           Brief Summary of Immigration Law

                                            Norway
Substance of Immigration Eligibility

In order to work in Norway, the employee either needs a residence permit, or need to register
with the police. Immigration of employees can be divided into three groups. The first group,
nationals from the Nordic countries, is not subject to a residence permit or registration to work
in Norway. Nationals from the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and
European Free Trade Association (EFTA) are required to register in order to be entitled to work
in Norway. And finally, a residence permit is required for nationals from countries outside the
Nordic, EU, EEA and EFTA (third countries) who are to work in Norway.

Family based Sponsorship

Certain family members of the applicant may apply for family based sponsorship in Norway.
Family members of EU, EEA or EFTA nationality may register with the registration scheme as
explained below. If the applicant is an EU, EEA or an EFTA national and the family member is
not, the family member must apply for a residence card pursuant to the EEA regulations.

If the applicant and family members all are from third countries, the family may apply for a
resident permit as explained below.

Employment-based Sponsorship

Nationals from the EU, EEA and EFTA countries are required to register with the registration
scheme. Nationals from third countries require a resident permit to work in Norway.

Exemptions to the Work Permit Requirement

Nordic nationals and nationals from the EU, EEA and EFTA countries do not need a residence
permit. Certain groups from the third countries are also exempt from the residence permit for a
certain period of time, e.g. three or six months. However, after this period has expired, a valid
residence permit is required for the employee to continue working in Norway.

The exemptions include:

     Skilled workers who are not subject to visa requirements may stay in Norway for up to
      six months to seek employment.
     Certain three-month employment relationships; commercial and business travelers,
      technical experts who are to install, repair, perform maintenance etc. on machinery or
      technical equipment or provide information about the use of such equipment, persons
      in private service accompanying persons who visit Norway, professional athletes and
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        their accompanying support network, certain public servants, journalists or other
        personnel on assignment for a foreign media institution, tour guides, staff on foreign
        trains, aircraft, buses or trucks and necessary security and maintenance crew on
        foreign-owned vessels laid up in Norway.
       Certain two-week assignments; artists, musicians and their necessary accompanying
        support staff.
       Persons selling Russian products via market trading in Northern Norway for up to one
        day per month.
       Diplomats
       Quarantine periods
       Certain categories of seafarers on board Norwegian ships or ships registered abroad.

Process for Immigration Approval

Nationals from EU, EEA and EFTA countries

Nationals from the EU, EEA and EFTA countries are required to register at the local police
station or at a Service Centre for Foreign Workers within three months after arrival. The
registration scheme on grounds of work applies to employees, self-employers and/or service
providers.

The registration can be made online, with a following duty to meet and present valid and
necessary identification and documentation at the local police station or the Service Centre for
Foreign Workers. Employees must provide an employment certificate or employment contract
in accordance with the provisions of the Working Environment Act. Self-employed persons
must enclose proof of being self-employed (e.g. transcript from the Central Coordinating
Register for Legal Entities/Norwegian Register of Business Enterprises.) Service providers and
business starters must provide an employment contract with the employer abroad and
documentation from a client in Norway or an employer in another EEA country confirming the
assignment and its duration (the service must be of a temporary nature).

A successful registration results in the issue of a registration certificate, free of charge and valid
as long as the conditions are met, i.e. status as employee. Application for a permanent right of
residence may be submitted after five consecutive years of lawful residence in Norway.

Transitional rules apply to employees from Bulgaria or Romania in cases where the employees
have not had a residence permit in Norway for the last 12 months before arrival. In such cases,
the employee must apply for a residence permit in the same way as employees from third
countries.

Job-seekers must also register and separate rules apply.



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Nationals from third countries

Nationals from countries outside the EU, EEA and EFTA, as well as outside the Nordic countries
(third countries) require a residence permit to work in Norway.

Self-employed persons who intend to carry on long-term independent business activity in
Norway must provide evidence that there is an economic basis for the activity. Other applicants
must have received a concrete offer of employment (employees) or assignment (service
providers). The pay and working conditions must not be inferior to those prescribed by the
current collective agreement or pay scale for the industry concerned or, in absence of such, not
be inferior to what is normal for the place and occupation concerned.

There are various types of resident permits. Hence, other requirements will vary depending on
the different type of residence permit.

Either the employer or the employee may apply for the residence permit. The latter requires a
written authorization from the employee. The application must be admitted to the police
district of the registered business address of the employer or the Service Centre of Foreign
Workers. The application fee is NOK 1 100,-.

The applicant cannot enter Norway until the resident permit has been granted. However,
exemptions are granted if the employer provides the tax certificate for VAT and tax, and a
declaration of compliance with legal requirements in Norway in relation to environment, health
and safety (EHS). This is called the "early employment scheme" and is applicable to employees
characterized as skilled worker expertise, employees who will be paid NOK 500 000 or more per
year (specialists), or employees and trainees employed by an international company.

If a residence permit is granted, it results in a duty to report to the police within seven days of
entry for identity control and to get the residence permit affixed in the passport. If the
application is rejected, the applicant has a right to appeal. For applicants subject to a visa
requirement, the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration will instruct a Norwegian embassy or
consulate to issue an entry visa.

The resident permit is granted up to three years, one year at the least. Though, the residence
permit cannot exceed the duration of the employment or assignment. After three consecutive
years of lawful residence, certain residence permits may be grounds for permanent right of
resident.

A foreign person working full time in Norway is automatically member of the Norwegian
National Insurance Scheme from the first day of work. The membership entitles the worker to
i.e. health services in Norway. Different rules will apply depending on the nationality of the
worker.

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Time required for Approval

Resident permits are granted by the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration or the police. The
police only have the authority to grant applications. Therefore, uncertain applications are
forwarded to the Norwegian Directorate. The police also issues registration certificates.

Resident permits are normally granted within 2 months of applying, and family immigration
with work immigrants is estimated to 3 months.

For immigration-related questions in Norway, please contact:

                                        Lise Berntsen
                                Advokatfullmektig/Associate
                                  Kvale Advokatfirma DA
                                  Fridtjof Nansens Plass 4
                                   Pb. 1752 Vika, N-0122
                                        Oslo, Norway
                                        lbe@kvale.no
                                     T: +47 22 47 97 00
                                    Cell: +47 90601719
                                       www.kvale.no




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