Kazakhstan: Bans on Sponsorship Now Common for Passport Registration Violations

The Migration Police have recently been increasingly enforcing the penalty of banning employers from sponsoring foreign workers if a foreign employee fails to register his or her passport with the Migration Police within five days of entry. Employers should ensure their employees strictly abide by the passport registration deadline.

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Dec 23, 2017
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The situation
The Migration Police have increasingly been blacklisting companies that employ foreign workers who fail to register their passport with the Migration Police.

A closer look

  • Consequences for failing to register.  If a foreign worker fails to register his or her passport within five days of entry, the worker could face administrative court proceedings in Kazakhstan, which can result in a fine on the worker and their employer.  
  • Increased bans on sponsorship. The Migration Police have recently been automatically banning employers from sponsoring foreign workers (known as blacklisting) if the court imposes a fine on the employer.  This has recently occurred even for a first-time offending company. 
  • Sponsorship ban details.  The sponsorship ban lasts one year and prevents employers from sponsoring foreign workers applying for business visas and work authorizations. 
  • Impact on visa-exempt nationals. Visa-exempt nationals may not be affected by such a ban, but this requires a case-by-case assessment and is at the discretion of the Migration Police.

Background
To register a passport, some foreign nationals can appear at the Migration Police office, while others can complete the registration at the airport upon arrival. This depends on the foreign worker's nationality.  Passport registration is mandatory upon each re-entry to Kazakhstan, even if the foreign national holds a long-term registration certificate. Foreign nationals who obtain two stamps in their migration card upon arrival are exempt from the passport registration requirement.

Looking ahead
It is not clear how long this increased enforcement will last. Employers should ensure their employees strictly abide by the passport registration deadline.

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to emea@fragomen.com.

© 2017 Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP, Fragomen Global LLP and affiliates. All Rights Reserved.

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