New teleworking developments between Austria and Germany
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the prevalence of home office work and number of teleworkers increased significantly. To take this special situation and the challenges caused by the pandemic into account, special regulations for ‘cross-border telework’ were adopted in 2020 in the EU, according to which the assignment to the social security system of a state should not change as a result of cross-border telework during the pandemic. Cross-border telework in this context is work performed:
As this EU regulation is planned to expire on 30 June 2023, a bilateral agreement has been concluded between Germany and Austria. This framework agreement stipulates that in cases with regular recurring cross-border telework (between Germany and Austria and vice versa) up to a maximum of 40% (of regular working time), the social security system assignment shall not change for cross-border telework. Employers can ask for this exception to be applied for a maximum of two years (and a request for extension is possible). The framework agreement will enter into force on 1 January 2023.
Birgit Vogt-Majarek, Partner, Stefan Burischek, Attorney-at-Law, Schima Mayer Starlinger Rechtsanwälte GmbH
New 2023 salary thresholds for foreign employees
Employers wanting to employ non-EEA/Swiss nationals in Belgium must obtain a work permit (up to 90 days) or a single permit (more than 90 days). For some categories, work authorisation depends on an annual gross salary threshold. The thresholds differ according to the Region where the employee will work. For 2023, the following thresholds apply:
Highly skilled employee:
European blue card:
European ICT card
Sophie Maes, Partner, Claeys & Engels
No list of named ‘special regime’ incoming taxpayers and researchers needed for 2022
Companies who employ incoming taxpayers and/or researchers under the new special tax status from 1 January 2022 must provide the tax administration with a nominative list detailing all the workers who benefited from the special tax regime during the previous year by no later than 31 January of each calendar year.
31 January 2023 would have been the first reporting deadline of this kind. The manner in which this list should be communicated to the administration has not yet been determined in a royal decree.
However, the Federal Public Service Finance has announced that there will be no implementing royal decree this year. This means employers are exempt from the obligation to prepare and submit a nominative list for the income year 2022.
Sylvie Dumortier, Tax Counsel, Claeys & Engels
EU COVID frontier worker teleworking social security measures extended
In the EU, only one social security system can apply. In case of simultaneous employment in more than one member state, an employee is subject to the social security of his or her residence country if he or she works there for at least 25% of his or her working time.
For the past two years, exceptional COVID measures meant European social security administrations did not take periods of telework in other member states as a result of COVID measures into account when determining the applicable social security system. These measures expired on 30 June 2022.
However, the Administrative Commission for the Coordination of National Social Security Systems approved a transitional social security period for teleworking frontier workers. During this time, frontier workers teleworking in their residence state do not yet trigger a shift of the applicable social security system.
This transitional social security period for frontier workers, which was initially foreseen until 31 December 2022, has now been extended until 30 June 2023.
Belgium has decided to follow this position (it is up to the member states to decide whether or not they follow the position of the Administrative Commission).
Sophie Maes, Partner, Claeys & Engels (Belgium)
Stricter position on foreign companies filing a corporate income tax return
The Belgian tax authorities have tightened their position on foreign companies filing a corporate income tax return, requesting foreign companies file a tax return or face a fine.
Under Belgian domestic tax law, any company with a Belgian establishment is in fact required to file a corporate income tax return. The Belgian administration interprets the definition of a ‘Belgian establishment’ very broadly, considering there is one as soon as one employee spends more than 30 days working on Belgian territory (even in the form of remote working).
The fact that a declaration must be filed does not, however, automatically imply that taxes are payable in Belgium. This is determined by double tax treaties, where there must be a permanent establishment in Belgium. This is generally assessed much more strictly at the level of double tax treaties than in the Belgian domestic interpretation.
Filing a corporate income tax return could also trigger the social security office (NSSO) to collect a corporate contribution (from EUR 347.50 to EUR 868.00).
Sylvie Dumortier, Tax Counsel, Martijn Ronnen, Attorney, Claeys & Engels
New COVID-19 entry requirements
Since September 2022, Brazil has introduced more flexibility into the COVID-19 rules for international travellers entering the country by air, land and sea, whether they are Brazilians or foreign nationals.
Under the new rules, before boarding a plane with whose destination is Brazil, or before entering Brazil, travellers must present either a vaccination certificate, showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 14 days before departure from the first embarkation point, or a PCR test or antigen exam performed within 24 hours before traveling by a laboratory recognised in the country where it was performed, with a negative/non-reactive result.
Maria Luisa Soter, Partner, Veirano Advogados
Visa for investors
The Chilean President has reiterated his call to invest in Chile in APEC and given an assurance that he will seek ‘great agreements’ to promote his reforms.
Investors can now get a temporary visa, which allows them to stay and work in Chile for two years, extendable upon request.
To apply, investors must either:
The request must be submitted from abroad through the platform procedures.serviciomigraciones.cl, complying with the stated requirements. These depend mainly on whether the applicant is an owner or partner of a company or if it is an investment project.
Nicole Davidoff, Associate, Marcela Salazar, Partner, Munita & Olavarría
Tax exemptions to attract foreign employees expanded
A law has amended the Cyprus Income Tax Law to expand the scope of the existing exemption from income tax of a person’s remuneration from their employment in Cyprus if they were non-resident before that employment.
This is part of the government’s strategy to attract foreign employees and high-skilled Cypriot workers who have been permanently resident abroad for a number of years.
In summary, the new provisions include a tax exemption of 20% or up to EUR 8,550 (whichever is lower) for seven years. This is available for anyone employed for the first time in Cyprus, who was not resident in Cyprus for three consecutive years before commencing employment in Cyprus. The person must have been resident abroad and employed by a non-resident employer.
There is a further 50% tax exemption for 17 years, for new employees’ remuneration provided that their annual remuneration exceeds EUR 55,000 and they were not Cyprus residents for at least ten consecutive years before starting employment in Cyprus.
Antonia Frangou, George Z. Georgiou & Associates LLC
Increase in quotas for employment mobility
With effect from 1 November 2022, the Government Regulation on the maximum number of applications for a visa for a stay of over 90 days for business purposes, applications for a long-term residence permit for investment purposes and applications for an employment card that can be submitted to an embassy has been amended.
In particular, the changes concern the Qualified Employee Programme (through which the majority of third-country workers come to the Czech Republic). The annual quota for this programme is increased for the Philippines (by 300 applications per year) and Moldova (500 applications per year) and new source countries have been added, namely Armenia (550 applications per year), Georgia (600 applications per year) and North Macedonia (400 applications per year).
This is at least a partial improvement in the scope for employers to recruit workers from third countries, given the current suspension of recruitment from Ukraine, Russia and Belarus as a result of the war (Ukrainians are the largest working minority in the Czech Republic).
Ladislav Mádl, Attorney-at-law, Randl Partners
Additional exceptions from immigration quotas
From 1 January 2023, two additional categories of foreign employees will be exempted from the immigration quota:
As the immigration quotas are insufficient, changes have been introduced to alleviate workforce shortages in the technology sector and allow temporary employment for a larger number of foreign employees.
Heili Haabu, Senior Associate, COBALT Law Firm
Secondment from a foreign company in the transportation sector
In the international transport transportation services sector, an Ordinance dated 5 October 2022 and a decree dated 21 October 2022, (based on EU directive 2020/1057/UE of 15 July 2020), have generalised the obligation to file a posting declaration (when the criteria are met) through the designated EU portal instead of using the ‘secondment attestation’ on the French SIPSI website as previously.
From 1 January 2023, foreign transportation companies must declare their employees posted to France at the latest on the date the posting starts through the French SIPSI portal until a joint ministerial (labour and transportation) declaration officially states that the European portal, RTPDP is available.
The attestation will remain valid in France for drivers of light vehicles (less than 3.5 tons for goods transportation or a maximum of nine people for passenger transportation), to safeguard the freedom of services.
In addition, current attestations of secondment in France made before 1 January 2023, will be valid until their expiry date (that is, six months maximum after the date of their creation).
Road transport operators will need to take this change into account in their secondment process.
Anne-Laure Périès, Partner, Capstan Avocats
New employment permit legislation
The Irish government has published the Employment Permits Bill 2022 which has been designed to streamline, improve and modernise Ireland’s employment permit system. It is also hope it will increase the systems responsiveness to Ireland’s evolving labour market.
As drafted, the Bill proposes to:
Interestingly, the Bill specifies that the minister can make regulations and set measures to be taken by the employer of a foreign national to whom a permit is granted to:
‘Increase the skills, knowledge, qualifications, or experience of employees (other than the foreign national) in respect of the employment concern, including the employment of new trainees or apprentices in that employment, or reduce reliance on the employment of foreign nationals including by way of technical changes to work processes’.
Declan Groarke, Associate, Lewis Silkin Ireland
Smart working outside Italy
Italian legislation contains specific provisions concerning remote work (smart work); however, it still lacks special provisions for smart working performed abroad.
The social security legislation that applies to an employee resident in Italy who is employed by an Italian company and who also works (to a marginal degree) pursuant to a smart-working agreement in another EU Member State is expected to be the Italian one, provided that the majority of the employee’s work does not take place outside Italy.
A1 certificates in these cases may protect the employer from social security claims in the host country. On the other hand, in cases where the smart working activity predominantly takes place abroad, the social security regime of the destination country may be deemed to apply.
Valeria Morosini, Partner, Toffoletto De Luca Tamajo
End of COVID-19 temporary immigration restrictions
The temporary restrictions on entry into Luxembourg for third-country nationals residing outside the EU or the Schengen area ended on 1 October 2022.
This means that since 1 October 2022, third-country nationals residing outside the EU or the Schengen area may travel to Luxembourg for all types of travel, including non-essential travel (e.g., for tourism or other reasons), regardless of their vaccination status.
However, third-country nationals residing outside the EU remain subject to the basic conditions applicable for entry and stay of less than 90 days in the Schengen area, including being in possession of a valid passport and, for individuals subject to a visa requirement to enter Luxembourg, being in possession of a short-stay visa.
Nina Thiery, Paralegal & Knowledge Manager, Solenne Laurent, Avocat & Junior Associate, Castegnaro Ius Laboris Luxembourg
End of COVID-related extended stay
Ukrainians who arrived in Poland due to the war will not be able to apply for a temporary residence permit under the simplified procedure after nine months of stay in Poland. Instead, they will keep their right to stay until 24 August 2023. The Diia.pl electronic residence permit will still be available.
In addition, residence documents, such as national visas that were extended due to COVID-19 will soon be cancelled. Foreign nationals who continue to reside in Poland on the basis of these documents will be obliged to apply for new permits. However, this will not concern Ukrainian citizens who came to Poland after the war and who are staying in the country on the basis of the rules described above.
Michał Kacprzyk, Senior Associate, Head of Immigration & Global Mobility Practice, Raczkowski
Allowance for housing Ukrainian migrants extended
The Slovak Government has adopted a new regulation that extends the provision of contributions for accommodating emigrants affected by the war in Ukraine. The goal of the contribution is to motivate the owners of real estate in Slovakia to accommodate individuals in need, instead of other possible tenants.
According to the new regulation, from 1 October 2022 to 28 February 2023, the maximum contribution will be as follows:
This means the maximum amount of the contribution was increased by 10% compared to that available under the previous regulation (valid from 1 July 2022 to 30 September 2022).
Dajana Csongrádyová, Partner, Marek Bugan, Senior Associate, NITSCHNEIDER & PARTNERS, advokátska kancelária, s. r. o.
Tighter regulation of address registrations for foreign nationals
Recently, the Migration Directorate (MD) has been increasingly restrictive on address registration for residence permit holders.
It was announced in early October that as of October 2022, the banned neighbourhoods that apply to initial residence permit applications have been expanded in İstanbul to all the neighbourhoods of Avcılar, Bahçelievler, Bağcılar, Başakşehir, Esenler, Esenyurt, Fatih, Küçükçekmece, Sultangazi ve Zeytinburnu districts.
In addition to this, the MD now requires a lease agreement issued by Turkish notaries, the landlord’s title deed copy, DASK (earthquake) insurance policy, and ‘numarataj’ (numbering document) for the address registration process. In addition, if applicants are family members, a legalised family, marriage or birth certificate is also required.
Work permit exemption cases
A new website has been launched for work permit exemption applications by the Turkish Ministry of Labor (MoL). According to MoL’s announcement, work permit exemption applications must be completed using this website from 1 October 2022.
If the foreign applicant is outside of Turkey when applying through new system, s/he must obtain a reference number by applying to the nearest Turkish consular mission. With this reference number, the applicant will be able to log into the new system and submit the requested information and documents into the system. If the outcome of the evaluation process is positive, the appropriate fees must be paid. After payment, the work permit exemption document will be posted to foreign national’s address. Though the new website is active, Turkish consular posts are not yet implementing this process.
Ekin Yıldız AV, Bener Law Firm
Autumn immigration law update
The Home Office has brought helpful new provisions into effect for sponsored workers from 9 November 2022, including:
Employers should note that visitors are no longer allowed to switch into the Creative Worker route in-country.
Citizens of Colombia, Guyana and Peru are also now able to enter the UK for six months as a visitor without having to obtain a visa in advance.
Supinder Sian, Partner, Lewis Silkin
Renewal of residence permits skipped in martial law
The terms for residing in Ukraine have been significantly facilitated.
During martial law, all immigrates are relieved from the obligation to renew their residence permits and are allowed to remain in Ukraine based on their overdue documents. For a 30-day period after martial law ends, residence permits can be renewed according to the usual procedure.
This does not apply to Russian citizens.
Valeriya Bezpala, Partner, Vasil Kisil & Partners