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Migration and Home Affairs


  • In the global context, a legal document issued by a competent authority of a State giving authorisation for employment of migrant workers in the host country during the period of validity of the permit.
  • In the EU context, a legal document issued by a competent authority of an EU Member State stating the right of a third-country national to work in its territory during the period of validity of the permit.



  • BG: Разрешение за работа
  • CS: povolení k zaměstnání
  • DE: Arbeitserlaubnis
  • EL: άδεια διαμονής για εργασία
  • EN: work permit
  • ES: Autorización de trabajo
  • ET: tööluba
  • FI: työlupa
  • FR: autorisation de travail / permis de travail
  • GA: Cead oibre
  • HR: radna dozvola
  • HU: munkavállalási engedély
  • IT: permesso di soggiorno per motivi di lavoro
  • LT: leidimas dirbti
  • LV: darba atļauja
  • MT: permess ta’ xogħol
  • NL: werkvergunning; arbeidskaart / toelating tot arbeid / arbeidsvergunning (BE)
  • PT: autorização de trabalho
  • RO: permis de muncă
  • SK: pracovné povolenie
  • SL: delovno dovoljenje / dovoljenje za delo
  • SV: arbetstillstånd
  • NO: Arbeidstillatelse (b); Arbeidsløyve (n)
  • KA: შრომის ნებართვა
  • UK: дозвіл на працевлаштування
  • HY: աշխատանքի թույլտվություն

Broader Term(s)

Narrower Term(s)

Related Term(s)


1. The right of third-country nationals to work in an EU/EFTA Member State mainly depends on the laws of that EU/EFTA Member State. EU Member States differ as to whether they issue a residence permit in addition to a work permit, and/or whether they issue a joint residence/work permit. All EU Member States have provisions in place outlining certain migrants who may be exempt from the obligation to obtain a work permit or for whom facilitated admission procedures are in place.
2. At EU level, different legislative instruments regulate the admission and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of employment, depending on different categories of migrant workers and their residence status (such as highly-qualified migrants, seasonal workers, au pair, students, intra-corporate transferees, posted workers, long-term residents). For further information, see European Migration Network (EMN): Satisfying Labour Demand through Migration, 2011.
3. Directive 2011/98/EU (Single Permit Directive) introduced a single application procedure for the issuing of single permits for non-EU nationals to reside and work in the territory of an EU Member State, and a common set of rights for non-EU workers legally residing in an EU Member State notably the right to equal treatment with nationals of the country where they reside and work for housing and employment advice services. The Directive applies to most non-EU nationals with authorisation to reside and work in the EU, independently of their initial reason for admission, unless they are explicitly excluded from the scope of the Directive. Its scope includes both non-EU nationals seeking to be admitted to an EU Member State in order to stay and work there and those who are already resident and have access to the labour market or are already working there.
4. Art.15 of Directive 2013/33/EU (Recast Reception Conditions Directive) gives applicants for international protection the right of having access to the labour market no later than 9 months from the date when the application was lodged, in accordance with the conditions as set up by the national law of EU Member States. In addition, Art. 26 of Directive 2011/95/EU (Recast Qualification Directive) stipulates that EU Member States shall authorise beneficiaries of international protection to engage in employed or self-employed activities, immediately after protection has been granted.