SLOVAKIA – Shortage Occupations Lists are Published; and Processing of Single Permits is Delayed
The Slovak authorities have published lists of occupations with labour shortages during the past calendar year, for districts where the average unemployment rate was lower than 5%. These occupations are now exempt from labour market testing.
Meanwhile, there are significant delays in single permit processing due to understaffing at the Bratislava Labour Office.
Shortage occupation lists
This new policy on shortage occupations is part of the amendments to Slovakia’s Act on Employment Services which took effect on 1 May 2018 (see our previous alert here)
For positions in shortage occupations, the Labour Office will issue confirmation on filling the vacancy without requiring a twenty-day “vacant position notification” (advertising to test the Slovak labour market).
Even though vacant position notifications are not required for these occupations, it is advised that employers continue advertising these positions so that local authorities can easily identify job occupations with labour shortages during the upcoming months.
A new list of shortage occupations will be published in January 2019 and then updated every year.
The foreign national can start on-the-job training right after the submission of the Single Permit application. The maximum duration for on-the-job training is six consecutive weeks within one calendar year and the employer must notify the Labour Office of such training by submitting an information card within seven business days. However, this training is allowed only during the initial 90 days of legal stay in country (the submission of a single permit application does not legalize the stay of the foreigner in country. Moreover, the 90 days Schengen rule is still applicable, and it is the responsibility of the foreign national to track days spent in the Schengen area).
The Foreign Police is having to put processing on hold for Single Permit applications, while it waits for delayed statements from the Labour Office. Without a Labour Office statement, the Foreign police cannot issue a decision on an application. The Labour Office in Bratislava is currently overloaded with applications and is unable to process all paperwork within given deadlines.
Employers in Slovakia who may be affected by these delays and changes to the rules for hiring or hosting non-EU nationals are advised to consult their immigration specialist.