By the beginning of 2020, our country has about 17,000 active FDI enterprises and tends to increase sharply. Along with the development of FDI enterprises, the number of foreign investors / workers also increased rapidly. Any foreigner working and living in Vietnam must carry out procedures on visa, work permit and temporary residence card.
However, due to the relatively complicated Vietnamese legal documents, not only foreigners but also foreign employers employ many troubles related to the above procedures of workers. Within the scope of this article, would like to provide a detailed analysis of the procedures that foreign workers need to follow while living and working in Vietnam.

  1. Obtain Investment Registration Certificate / Certificate of capital contribution, share purchase.

Investment registration certificate means a paper or an electronic document recording information of an investor’s registration of an investment project. The process of applying for an investment registration certificate without having to apply for an investment policy decision is as follows:
Step 1: The investor submits 01 set of documents to the Department of Planning and Investment / Management Board of the industrial park where the enterprise is headquartered.
Step 2: Within 15 days after receiving a complete dossier, the investment registration agency shall grant an investment registration certificate; In case of refusal, the investor must notify in writing the investor and clearly state the reason.
A dossier of application for an investment registration certificate comprises:
Written request for implementation of investment project;
Copies of identity card, identity card or passport for individual investors; copy of the Establishment Certificate or other equivalent documents certifying the legal status for institutional investors;
Proposal of an investment project includes the following contents: investor implementing the project, investment objectives, investment scale, investment capital and capital raising plan, location, duration, and schedule of investment. , labor needs, proposals for investment incentives, impact assessment, socio-economic efficiency of projects;
A copy of one of the following documents: financial statements of the latest 2 years of the investor; financial commitment of the parent company; financial institutions’ commitment to financial support; guarantee of financial capacity of the investor; documents explaining the financial capacity of the investor;
Proposal of land use demand; In case the project does not request the State to allocate, lease land, or permit the change of land use purpose, then submit a copy of the venue leasing agreement or other documents certifying that the investor has the right to use the location for realization. present investment projects;
Explanation on the use of technology for projects specified at Point b, Clause 1, Article 32 of this Law includes the following contents: technology name, technology origin, technology process diagram; main specifications, use status of main machines, equipment and technology lines;
BCC contracts for investment projects in the form of BCC contracts.
Fee for granting investment registration certificates: There is no charge
In case an employee registers to contribute capital, buy capital contribution or purchase shares in an enterprise already established in Vietnam, the process shall be implemented at and foreign-invested-capital-foreign-investment-capital-in-Vietnam-Vietnam /

2. Apply for a Visa / Work Visa to Vietnam.
A visa, also known as a Visa, is a document issued by a Vietnamese competent authority that allows foreigners to enter Vietnam.
For foreign investors / workers working in Vietnam, Visa must have the symbol DT, DN or LD. However, for a DT visa, the employee must meet the requirement that he / she has an investment registration certificate / capital contribution or share purchase certificate, the LĐ visa must have a work permit. Therefore, foreigners expected to enter Vietnam to invest or work should apply for a DN visa.

So, what is DN visa?
Business visa, also known as business visa, is granted to foreigners who come to work in Vietnamese businesses. Typically, these are partners of Vietnamese businesses. Purpose of entering Vietnam to exchange information, sign contracts, discuss business cooperation strategies. Like other visas, foreigners can choose the value of a single or multiple visa, the duration of the visa but not more than 12 months.
The process of applying for a DN Visa is as follows:
Step 1: Vietnamese enterprises carry out procedures for inviting and guaranteeing foreigners to enter Vietnam:
Step 2: The Immigration Department will receive the dossier and approve it by returning the Entry Official to the enterprise. In case of disapproval, there will be a written reply stating the reason.
Step 3: Foreign workers apply for DN visas at diplomatic missions or international airport checkpoints.

A dossier of application for a DN visa includes:
Form NA16 applies for seal registration and signature for the first time;
Authenticated copy of enterprise registration certificate;
Form NA2;
Passport valid at least equal to the visa application period;
Time of issue: 05 working days from the date of submission

Visa issuance fee:

Numerical order Content Collection rates
1 The visa is valid for one time 25 USD / pcs
2 The visa is valid for many times:
a Valid for up to 3 months  50 USD / pcs
b Valid for over 3 to 6 months 95 USD/pcs
c Valid for over 06 months to 01 year 135 USD/pcs

Note: Do not apply for a Tourist Visa at this step

Normally, foreigners often apply for DL visa at this step because this is a tourist visa, issued to foreigners traveling, so the conditions for applying are very easy. However, according to the provisions of Clause 1, Article 7 of the 2014 Law on exit, entry, transit and residence of foreign workers in Vietnam, Visa is not permitted for conversion. Therefore, after entering Vietnam with a DL visa, an employee wishing to apply for a temporary residence card to work and work must leave Vietnam and re-enter with a DN visa.

  1. Applying for a work permit

What is a work permit?

Currently there are no specific provisions on the concept of work permits. However, synthesizing from legal documents, we can understand that a work permit is a document issued by the Vietnamese State agency to a worker to work legally in Vietnam. The work permit shows the information including: Full name of the employee, date of birth, Nationality and passport, Qualifications, Agency of the working employee, Job position, Term of work permit, employee photo.

The term of a work permit?
According to Article 173 of the Labor Code and guided in Article 11 of Decree 11/2011/2016 / ND-CP, the validity period of a work permit is granted according to the duration of one of the following cases but no more than 02 years:
The term of the labor contract is expected to be signed;
The duration of the foreign party to send foreign workers to work in Vietnam;
Term of a contract or agreement signed between a Vietnamese and foreign partner;
Term of service contract or agreement between Vietnamese and foreign partners;
The time limit stated in the service provider’s document sending foreign workers to Vietnam to negotiate service provision;
The duration has been determined in the certificate of the foreign non-governmental organization or international organization permitted to operate in accordance with the law of Vietnam;
The time limit in the service provider’s document sending foreign workers to Vietnam to establish a commercial presence of that service provider;
The time limit in the document proving that the foreign worker is engaged in the operation of a foreign enterprise that has established a commercial presence in Vietnam.

The process of applying for a work permit:
To apply for a work permit, an employee must perform two steps:
Step 1: Please approve the needs of using foreign workers;
Step 2: Get a work permit;
Details of the process to apply for a work permit here

Note: Foreign investors are exempted from work permits. However, foreign investors still have to follow the procedures to apply for the approval of the demand for foreign labor and to exempt the work permit.
Procedures for temporary residence card
Temporary residence card is a document issued by an immigration authority or a competent authority of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to a foreigner who is permitted to reside for a limited period of time in Vietnam and is valid for visa replacement ( 13 Article 3 of the Law on Exit of Transit of Foreigners in Vietnam in 2014).

The process of applying for temporary residence card:
Step 1: The enterprise submits 01 set of dossiers to apply for a temporary residence card at the 1-door room of the Immigration Department – Ministry of Public Security at one of the following 3 addresses:
Hanoi Immigration Department: 44-46 Tran Phu Street, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi.
Ho Chi Minh City Immigration Department: 254 Nguyen Trai Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.
Da Nang Immigration Department: 7 Tran Quy Cap Street, Hai Chau District, Da Nang City.
Step 2: Within 05 days from the date of submission, in case of complete and accurate dossier, the Immigration Department will return the result of the temporary residence card. Temporary residence card is a valuable paper to replace Visa, when the temporary residence card expires, employees are considered for new issuance.

  • A dossier of grant of a temporary residence card comprises:

Authenticated copy of operation license of enterprise or guarantee organization such as: Investment registration certificate, Enterprise registration certificate;
Written introduction of seals and signatures of competent persons of enterprise groups or guarantee organizations, made according to form NA16 attached to Circular No. 04/2015 / TT-BCA;
Official letter requesting temporary residence card for foreign workers according to NA6 form attached to Circular No. 04/2015 / TT-BCA;
Declaration requesting temporary residence card for foreigners according to form NA8 attached to Circular No. 04/2015 / TT-BCA;
The original passport valid for at least 13 months;
A certified copy of a valid work permit;
02 2 * 3 size photos, white background photos, without glasses, taken within 06 months from the date of application for temporary residence card;

Fees for granting temporary residence cards are specified in Circular No. 219/2016 / TT-BTC:

Numerical order
Fee name Collection rates
1 Limited to 01 year to 02 years 145 USD / card
2 Has a term of between 2 years and 05 years 155 USD/ card
3 For foreigners who are granted multiple visas of LD and ĐT by the Vietnamese diplomatic missions abroad for a period of more than 1 year 5 USD/card

The above are all details of the procedures that foreign investors / workers must meet when working and living in Vietnam. We hope that, with the analysis in this article, you can understand and apply the laws to apply for visas, investment certificates, work permits, temporary residence cards for foreigners. SPECIALIZED PROVISION OF RELATED LEGAL SERVICES INCLUDING:

  • Procedures for applying for Visa, Temporary residence card for workers, foreign investors;
  • Other procedures such as applying for judicial record, passport ….
  • Procedures for obtaining a certificate of investment registration for a foreign investor in Vietnam, a license for enterprise establishment, or a license for operation (if any);
  • Procedures for applying for a work permit, a certificate of exemption from a work permit for foreign workers and foreign investors

If you are in need of legal services, please contact us at hotline 0982.466.166 or email

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