Work permit for a foreign employee

Table of Contents

You are an employer in France and you wish to hire a foreign employee? MALEKIAN law firm can assist you in filing your application for a work permit with the foreign labor department of the regional directorates of the economy, employment, labor and social affairs (DREETS) or in challenging the unfavorable opinion of this department.

What is a request for a work permit?

To engage in professional activity in France, whether as a primary or secondary activity, a foreigner must be authorized to work in France. The work permit is distinct from the right of residence. An alien in a regular situation may not have permission to work in France, as is the case, for example, with a visa or residence permit bearing the mention “Visitor.” In certain cases, a work permit is already automatically obtained for certain residence permits such as the resident card, the passport talent, and the private and family life residence permit.

An employer wishing to hire a foreign employee, whether already settled in France or abroad, must first request an online work permit from the foreign labor department. To do so, the employer may also appoint a lawyer dedicated to foreign law.

What are the conditions to be met for a work permit application?

The conditions are set out in the Labor Code. As a general rule, access to employment is reserved for applicants already present on the job market. Thus, the employment situation is often opposed to the work permit application made by a foreigner. Therefore, for professions in high demand where there are not enough applicants already present in this market, the foreigner will have a better chance of obtaining a work permit.

The criteria used by the administration are exhaustively listed in Article R. 5221-20 of the Labor Code, which means that any other criterion used to refuse a work permit will be considered illegal. The criteria listed in the article are not all of equal importance. Thus, there are two main examination criteria, as they are often the basis for the administration to refuse to issue a work permit.

In which cases is the employment situation not opposable?

In certain cases, the employment situation is not opposable, such as for a foreigner holding a Master’s degree obtained in France and having a permanent employment contract with a minimum wage of the SMIC.

What are the reasons for refusing a work permit application?

The reasons for refusal may vary depending on each work permit application. Indicatively, the most frequent reasons for refusal are as follows:

  • The conditions for granting the work permit are not met
  • The applicant has no right to stay in France
  • The applicant has no right to work in France
  • The applicant does not have the necessary skills, qualifications, or experience to perform the work
  • The opposition of the employment situation in the profession and geographical area (for professions not listed on the list of professions in high demand).
  • No publication of a job offer for work that is not on the list of professions in high demand.
  • Non-compliance with social rights by the employer
  • Non-compliance with exercise conditions for regulated professions
  • Non-compliance with remuneration
  • etc.

How to challenge a refusal of a work permit application?

The refusal of a work permit application could result in a refusal of a residence permit and, if applicable, a decision to leave French territory, although the prefecture is not bound by the negative opinion. It is important to challenge, if appropriate, the refusal of a work permit application. The appeal against the refusal of a work permit application can be made at two levels. A gracious administrative appeal before the DREETS and/or a contentious appeal before the competent administrative court.

MALEKIAN Law Firm can assist you in filing your work permit application or challenging the rejection of your application with the

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