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The 7 Things Your Employer Needs to Know About the Immigration Process When Applying for a Hong Kong Employment Visa

March 26th, 2019

Posted by / in Employment Visas, Musing / 6 responses


Applying for a Hong Kong Employment Visa?

You’ve been offered a job in Hong Kong and you need an employment visa.

But your new employer has no experience about the process, so what do you need to tell them?

1. Firstly, there’s the approvability test – namely – you need to possess special skills, knowledge or experience of value to and not readily available in Hong Kong AND your employer must be justified in engaging your services as opposed to those of a local employee.

2. Secondly, the minimum value of your total package should amount to no less than HKD260,000 per annum, give or take.

3. Their sponsorship of  your application is an absolute prerequisite – which means they must agree to fund the cost of your repatriation if your residence does wrong for any reason.

4. Your employer will have to disclose certain corporate and business information in support of your application and they may find this information to be confidential (such as financial information and details about current employees, their job titles and how much they get paid).

5. They need to understand that patience will be required until you can start your duties – it will take a minimum of 4 weeks to process your visa application AFTER all the documents the HKID need have been received in their hands AND it is illegal for you to start working, paid or unpaid, until your visa application has been approved.

6. You can start your application whether you are inside or outside of Hong Kong but the HKID will not likely grant you an extension to your visitor visa just because you’re in Hong Kong when your application was submitted.

7. And, finally, your employer has an obligation to notify the Director of Immigration as soon as your employment with them comes to an end.

As is most things in life, just because you want something it doesn’t automatically follow that you’re guaranteed to get it.

The immigration process is no different.

If you both take the situation seriously, meet the minimum criteria for visa approval at least and be forthright, respectful, earnest and honest in your dealings with the Immigration Department, it is not unreasonable to expect a positive outcome to your employment visa application.

More Stuff to Help You Along

What’s the minimum salary for a Hong Kong employment visa approval?

I’ve lost my job – will I get kicked out of Hong Kong?

Can I apply for a residence visa whilst I am visiting Hong Kong?

What are your visa options in Hong Kong if your marriage has irretrievably broken down?

The Hong Kong Immigration Department are out to deny – not approve – applications (aren’t they?)


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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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