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Hong Kong Employment Visa Extension: What to Do If You Lose Your Job And Time Is Running Out

June 13th, 2023

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Hong Kong Employment Visa Extension? Losing your job can be a challenging experience, and if you’re working in Hong Kong, you might be wondering if it’s possible to get an interim employment visa extension while you continue looking for a new employer. With this question today, I’ll discuss the Immigration Department’s policy on Hong Kong employment visa extension and the options available in such a situation.

Hong Kong Employment Visa Extension


I’ve lost my job: can I get an interim Hong Kong employment visa extension while I continue looking for a new employer and sort my future out?


Can You Get an Interim Hong Kong Employment Visa Extension?

Unfortunately, it is impossible to secure an interim extension to your employment visa in these circumstances. The Hong Kong Immigration Department policy would be to give you a visitor visa when your employment visa expires, unless you have a suitable new job offer before your present visa expires and you submit a change of employer application before that date. Please also note the same inpact on accompanying family dependant visas.

What Happens If You Find a Job After Your Employment Visa Expires?

If you only receive a suitable job offer after your work visa expires and you have a visitor visa, you can then make an application to adjust your status from visitor visa through to employment visa once again. This is an entry employment visa application (with dependant visa again for the accompanying family). However, this is likely to break your continuity of ordinary residence if you intend to apply for right of abode (permanent residency) if you have lived in Hong Kong continuously for a full 7 years holding a residence visa (visitor visas usually don’t count).

Key Takeaways

  1. It is not possible to get an interim Hong Kong employment visa extension if you lose your job and are still looking for a new employer.
  2. The Immigration Department will issue you a visitor visa when your work visa expires, unless you find a new job and submit a change of work visa sponsorship application before your work visa expires.
  3. Please note, the onus is on you to approach the Immigration Department if your employment visa is set to expire: nothing happens ‘automatically’.
  4. Your family dependants visa will be impacted too
  5. If you find a job after your work visa expires, you can apply to adjust your status from a visitor visa to an employment visa, but this may affect your eligibility for permanent residency.

Ending Note

In conclusion, it’s essential to be aware of the Hong Kong Immigration Department’s policies and procedures in case you lose your job. Children in school will need to stop attending and working spouses will no longer be lawfully employable whilst the whole family is on visitor status pending reacquisition of employment and dependant visas in the wake of a new employment.

More Stuff You May Find Useful Or Interesting

Can You Get an Interim Hong Kong Employment Visa Extension While You Continue Looking for a New Employer?

All About Hong Kong Employment Visa Sponsorship

Change of Employer for A Hong Kong Employment Visa – All You Need to Know

Will Any Time You Spend in Hong Kong as a Visitor Count Towards the Magic 7 Years for the Right of Abode?

Hong Kong Employment Visas – A Complete Overview & All The Resources You Need To Apply


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The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.



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