A work permit is the permission to take a job within a foreign country. It may also be a permit given to minors allowing them to work legally under child labor laws. Within an industry, a work permit may be required to execute certain functions within a factory outside normal operational tasks (such as maintenance tasks) — in some places they might be called Permit to Work (PTW).
Currently, every EU country has a different process for granting work permits to nationals of non-EU countries. To address this issue, the European Commission began work in 1999 on developing an EU-wide process for the entry of non-EU nationals into the work force. In October 2007, they adopted a proposal to introduce a work permit similar to the United States' "Green Card" program, called the "Blue Card". It is similar to the UK's Highly Skilled Migrant Programme, with the exception that it will require an employment contract in place prior to migration. After two years in the first country, the migrant will be allowed to move and work in another EU country, and can sum the number of years spent in the EU for purposes of residency. This new card will abolish work permits across the EU and centralize the issuing from Brussels. 
The procedure to get a work permit is quite elaborate since the applicant should prove that no French jobseeker fitted the position.
There are seven standard ways to apply for a work permit in the United Kingdom: the Business and Commercial Arrangements, the Training and Work Experience Arrangements, the Sports people and Entertainers Arrangements, Student Internships, GATS, Ancestry Visa and the Sectors Based Scheme. All applications require the work permit holder to leave the country where the work permit was issued every three months under the Work Permit Arrangements. Costs for leaving the airport are £64, per person and you must return to the airport after 24 hours or one working day to leave the country. If you remain in the airport the cost is £35 per person and you must leave the country after 24 hours or one working day in the airport.  Each of these involves its own application process, and generally requires a job offer from a UK employer.
UK Work visas allow for extended visa options which may lead to permanent residence. With Europe at its doorstep and a large domestic market, the various UK work visa categories offer a gateway for thousands of applicants seeking the experience of European life.
The UK work permit system is currently being replaced by a new points-based immigration system.
According to the Federal Migration Service of Russia estimates, Russia's 5 million foreign nationals work today.
In order to work in Russia, foreign citizen must have a work visa (visa for arriving at the order), to obtain a work permit and get on migration registration in the Russian Federal Migration Service bodies.
For foreign citizens arriving without visas (CIS countries except Turkmenistan and Georgia) there is a simplified procedure. The period of temporary stay for them is 90 days but can be extended up to one year from the date of entry into the Russian Federation on presentation of the migration service of the employment contract or a contract of civil-legal nature. That is, a foreigner can obtain a work permit for up to 90 days, and then to extend it after the job. However, it is recommended to immediately impose labor or civil contract and to issue a work permit for the duration of its validity.
Issuance of work permits is carried out taking into account the established quota. The quota is divided by region, Russia and the integrated vocational qualification groups.
A work permit is divided to some categories:
- qualified professionals are employed by their existing profession (specialty), included in the approved list of professions (specialties, positions);
- highly qualified professionals engaged in labor activity in accordance with the provisions of Article 13 of the Federal Law "On the Legal Status of Foreign Citizens in the Russian Federation."
The work permit is valid within the subject of the Russian Federation, in which it was issued.
Foreigners and stateless persons can be employed in Ukraine after obtaining an appropriate permit. These requirements are established by article 42 of the Law of Ukraine "On Employment". State Employment Service of Ukraine is the main authority to issue work permit.
Does not require obtaining a work permit for:
- foreigners who have residence permit in Ukraine;
- foreigners who have permission to immigrate to Ukraine;
- foreigners who are recognized as persons in need of additional protection, or who are granted temporary protection in Ukraine;
- representatives of foreign maritime (river) fleet and airlines that serve such companies on the territory of Ukraine;
- employees of foreign media who are accredited to work in Ukraine;
- professional athletes, artists and art workers to work in Ukraine;
- workers of emergency services for urgent work;
- employees of foreign representative (branch) office that are registered in the territory of Ukraine in accordance with the procedure established by the law;
- ecclesiastic who are to reside in Ukraine temporarily (on the ground of invitation of religious organization) for canonical activity only in such religious organization;
- foreigners who arrived in Ukraine to participate in the implementation of international technical assistance projects;
- foreigners who arrived in Ukraine to conduct teaching and / or scientific activities in higher education institutions;
- other foreigners in cases provided by laws and international treaties of Ukraine;
- Obtaining work permit in Ukraine is one of the basics to obtain residence permit.
In general, the United States does not require work permits for adult citizens. However, certain aliens are required to have an Employment Authorization Document from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
The federal government of the United States does not require work permits or proof-of-age certificates for a minor to be employed. However, the possession of an age certificate constitutes a good faith effort to comply with minimum age requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. The United States Department of Labor will issue a "certificate of age" if the minor employee's state does not issue them, or if the minor is requested by his or her employer to provide one. Several states are not listed in 29 C.F.R. 570.9(a), such as Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah, and thus their certificates may not meet the requirements of 29 C.F.R. 570.5(b) as being evidence of compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Many states also require them for workers of certain ages. In some states, for example New Jersey, permits are only required for minors 14 and 15 years old, while others such as Massachusetts require, at least in theory, work permits for all minors until they turn 18 years of age. In some states, enforcement is strict. Permits are usually issued through the school system the minor attends, and typically at a minimum is conditioned on enrollment in high school with regular attendance (no chronic absenteeism, tardiness, or truancy). Some states such as New York and Indiana require high school students with part-time jobs to maintain a certain grade point average. Minors who are working are usually restricted in the number of hours each day or week they are permitted to work as well as the types of jobs they may hold.
The immigration in Turkey is regulated by the General Directorate of Immigration Management (Göç İdaresi Genel Müdürlüğü) under the supervision of the Ministry of Interior while work permits are delivered by the General Directorate of Labor Immigration (Uluslararası İşgücü Genel Müdürlüğü) under the supervision of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security (Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Çalışma ve Sosyal Güvenlik Bakanlığı). All applications for both residence permit and work permit are made through online government portals. The residence permit application is made through " "e-Residence" (e-İkamet) while Turkish work permit application are made through e-Government (Turkey) (e-Devlet).
There are three categories of South African work visa or permit available to a foreigner each with its own set of specific requirements all assisting in immigration to South Africa or working in South Africa. These are the General Work Visa/Permit, the Critical Skills Work Visa/Permit and the Intra-Company Transfer Work Visa/Permit. Due to recent immigration law changes (May, 2014), the obtaining of work visas or permits in South Africa has become much more arduous. Furthermore, these work permits are now referred to as visas.
General Work Visa/Permit - The basis of a general work visa/permit is that a firm offer of employment has been made by a prospective employer to a foreigner after such employer has unsuccessfully exploited the local labour market in attempting to procure the needed skills, experiences or qualifications equivalent of such foreigner.
Critical Skills Work Visa/Permit - A critical skills work permit may be issued to a foreigner who possesses critical skills or qualifications and is able to demonstrate with supporting documentation in the form of testimonials, publications. This is based on a list published by the Department of Home Affairs in South Africa called the Critical Skills List  A letter of motivation from an authoritative body to substantiate the benefits that those skills will bring to South Africa. This critical skills work permit is granted for up to five years and may be renewed for a further period, if required. This visa type replaces the previously issued Quota Work Permit and the Exceptional Skills Work Permit.
Intra-Company Transfer Work Visa/Permit - An intra company transfer work permit is issued to a foreigner who is normally deployed or seconded to South African branch, subsidiary or associate office of a corporate entity aboard. There are strict controls to ensure that the foreigner remains employed in his or her specific position during the tour of duty. This type of visa is only valid for two years, and often no extension is possible. Also, any applicant must have first worked for a minimum of 6 months in the employ of the company’s foreign office before applying to relocate and immigrate to the South African branch.
Canada work permits are issued under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) by Canada immigration and Citizenship.
The TFWP has four streams: high-skilled workers, low-skilled workers, the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program, and the Live-In Caregiver Program.
In Singapore, the work permit process is managed by the Ministry of Manpower. There are several kinds of work permits, and the type accorded generally depends on the salary range of the position, as well as on skills (including education), work experience, and the type of job being applied for. These work permit types include the Employment Pass (monthly salary of at least S$4,000), S Pass (monthly salary of at least S$2,800), and "Work Permit" (generally for unskilled workers).
For skilled personnel such as confinement nannies from Malaysia, the work permit is short-term. Employers or appointed agencies are able to hire Malaysian confinement nanny by applying the work permit either online or manually. The validity period can be up to 16 weeks with reference to the birth time of the child. There are two situations which the pass can be extended. It is either when the required employment period is longer than the issued permit or when the confinement nanny leaves Singapore during her employment period.
Another kind of work permit available in Singapore commonly known as the EntrePass and is especially geared towards entrepreneurs who might not pass the stringent requirements regarding education and salary. The EntrePass is for foreign entrepreneurs who are planning to start up a business in Singapore. The entrepreneur must be actively involved in operations of the business. Candidates can apply for this anytime up until 6 months after they registered the business. Generally EntrePass are awarded to individuals who have either have a proven track record of running successful businesses or who have an innovative idea. The Singapore Personalised Employment Pass, also known as PEP is a special type of Singapore work visa issued to individuals based on their own merits. The issuance of the PEP is managed by Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower. The PEP is independent of any employer, rendering a PEP holder the flexibility and freedom to switch employers without having the pass revoked. The PEP holder is also entitled to stay in Singapore for up to 6 months in between jobs and to evaluate career opportunities. It is issued for a period of 5 years, and non renewable thereafter. But, since December 2011, PEP has been discontinued by the Singaporean Authority.
A work permit system is a formal written system to control certain types of work identified as potentially hazardous. The terms "P.T.W.", "permit" or "work permit" refer to the form used by a company to meet its needs. These systems aim to ensure proper planning and consideration of the risks involved in a particular job, at a specific time and place, with designated precautions.
It is usually categorized in "hot" work permits and "cold" work permits. Hot works are those where there is a potential of generating fire or extreme heat, cold ones are all the others.
Several different types of visas are available for immigrants.
Foreigners holding a "B" visa and wishing to work or start a business in Thailand are required to obtain a work permit. The issuance of work permits is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Labor of Thailand. Work without permission in the Kingdom is criminally punishable. It takes 7 working days to process the application for a permit. If the applicant is qualified and able to use "One Stop Service Center", the work permit will only take one day.
Thai government fees for a work permit:
- 100 Baht/form = Permit application Fee.
- 750 Baht = work permit not longer than 3 months.
- 1,500 Baht = work permit longer than 3 months but does not exceed 6 months.
- 3,000 Baht = work permit longer than 6 months but does not exceed 12 months.
Thai government fees for amendments:
- 500 Baht/Book = Substitute of a permit.
- 1,000 Baht/time = Permission to change or add job description.
- 3,000 Baht/time = Permission to remove or add an employer.
- 1,000 Baht/time = Permission to change or add the locality or place of work.
- 150 Baht/time = Permission to change or add conditions.
According to the Emergency Decree on Non-Thais' Working Management No. 2, 2018, foreigners can work anywhere in the country without having to record these changes in the permit, but each employer must be listed in the book. If the employee is transferred to another office in another part of the country, the employer should notify the office of the Employment Department.
Professions that are prohibited for foreigners
The Thai Ministry of Labor has developed a list of professions that foreigners are prohibited from working in the Kingdom. This is done so that the local population does not suffer from unemployment due to the influx of immigrants.
List of prohibited professions:
- Labour work except labour work in fishing boats under the next category below. The said work which is forbidden to aliens shall not apply to aliens who have entered into Thailand under an agreement on hire of labour concluded between the Government of Thailand and other nations, and also aliens whose status has been prescribed as legal immigrant and who possess a residence certificate under the law governing immigration.
- Agriculture, animal husbandry, forestry or fishery, except work requiring specialized knowledge, farm supervision, or labour work in fishing boats, particularly marine fishery.
- Bricklaying, carpentry, or other construction work.
- Wood carving.
- Driving motor vehicles or vehicles which do not use machinery or mechanical devices, except piloting aircraft internationally.
- Front shop sales and auction sale work.
- Supervising, auditing, or giving service in accountancy, except occasional internal auditing.
- Cutting or polishing precious or semi-precious stones.
- Haircutting, hairdressing, or beautification.
- Cloth weaving by hand.
- Mat weaving or making utensils from reed, rattan, jute, hay, or bamboo.
- Making rice paper by hand.
- Lacquer work.
- Making Thai musical instruments.
- Niello work.
- Goldsmith, silversmith, or gold/copper alloy smith work.
- Stone work.
- Making Thai dolls.
- Making mattresses or quilts.
- Making alms bowls.
- Making silk products by hand.
- Making Buddha images.
- Making paper or cloth umbrellas.
- Making shoes.
- Making hats.
- Brokerage or agency except in international trading.
- Professional civil engineering concerning design and calculation, systemization, analysis, planning, testing, construction supervision, or consulting services, excluding work requiring specialized techniques.
- Professional architectural work concerning design, drawing/making, cost estimation, or consulting services.
- Cigarette rolling by hand.
- Tour guiding or conducting.
- Hawking of goods & Thai typesetting by hand.
- Unwinding and twisting silk by hand.
- Clerical or secretarial work.
- Providing legal services or engaging in legal work, except arbitration work; and work relating to defense of cases at arbitration level, provided the law governing the dispute under consideration by the arbitrators is not Thai law, or it is a case where there is no need to apply for the enforcement of such arbitration award in Thailand.
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- 29 C.F.R. 570
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