The situation in Ukraine has generated a migration wave toward Romania and other European countries. The difficulties the Ukrainian people have faced are not going to simply vanish once entering the Romanian territory, and they will soon have to find a job to support themselves.
This article aims to shed more light on the steps that an employer must take to recruit Ukrainian citizens currently.
However, unprecedented events require extraordinary measures. On the 8th of March 2022 was published OUG 20/2022 which aims to amend and complete some normative acts, as well as to establish some support and humanitarian assistance measures and refers, in particular to the situation of the Ukrainian citizens.
What is the document regulating the Ukrainian citizens employment conditions ( non-EU citizens)
The normative act that regulates the conditions of employment of Ukrainian citizens (non-EU citizens) in Romania is the Government Ordinance 25/2014, regarding the employment and secondment of foreigners in Romania.
What are the steps an employer must take to hire a non-EU citizen in general
Getting the employment permit by the employer
Normally, for non-EU citizens in general, it is necessary for the employer to obtain an employment permit in relation to the competent Romanian Immigration Office, the documentation and formalities provided by the Government Ordinance 25/2014 for this permit being quite complex, requiring fulfilling the conditions and requirements provided by the Ordinance. At the same time, at the time of the application, the maximum quota of new non-EU workers admitted annually on the Romanian labor market, approved annually by Government Decision and which in 2022 is of 100,000 people, must be taken into account.
Obtaining a long-stay visa for work purposes in Romania
Subsequently, on the basis of the employment notice and another document file, non-EU citizens should obtain from Romania’s diplomatic missions in their country or from other states (embassies / consulates) long-stay visas for work purposes in Romania (90 days with multiple entries and exits). The normative act that regulates the obtaining of the long-stay visa for work purposes is the Emergency Ordinance 194/2002 regarding the regime of foreigners in Romania. Of course, for the issunce of a long-stay visa, non-EU citizens must meet several specific requirements and conditions, as listed in the normative act.
Concluding the labor agreement
After obtaining the long-stay visa for work purposes and on the basis of this, non-EU citizens should come to Romania and conclude the employment contract with the Romanian employer, according to the employment notice, previously obtained by him.
Obtaining the residence permit for work purposes
Based on the employment contract and another complex file, non-EU citizens should obtain from the Romanian Immigration Office competent (IGi territorial authorities within which non-EU citizens are to work) the residence permit for work purposes (first extension of the right to stay and work granted by visa), according to the procedure provided by Government Ordinance 25/2014. The permit also includes the personal code / NIF required for Romanian employers to pay legal fees (taxes and contributions) of the employee in Romania.
How is the situation of the Ukrainian citizens different
Regarding the special situation of Ukrainian citizens, it should be noted that in their case the employer is not obliged to obtain prior notice of employment from the competent Romanian Immigration Office, if they are employed by employers in Romania with an individual employment contract, full time, for a maximum period of 9 months in a calendar year, according to the provisions of art. 3 para. (2) lit. o) of GO 25/2014 which shows that (2) by exception from para. (1), it is not necessary to obtain the employment permit for employment in Romania of foreigners in the following categories: o) citizens of the Republic of Moldova, Ukraine and the Republic of Serbia employed in Romania with a full-time individual employment contract, for a maximum period of 9 months in a calendar year.
Thus, if the above conditions of employment are met, employers will no longer have to obtain the employment permit for Ukrainian citizens.
HOW does the Emergency Ordinance 20/2022 published on March 8, 2022 amends the PROCEDURE AND the CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT OF UKRAINIAN CITIZENS?
(1) The Ukrainian citizens who have legally entered the territory of Romania and who do not request a form of protection according to Law no. 122/2006 on asylum in Romania, with subsequent amendments and completions, may be employed without the employment notice provided in art. 3 para. (1) and art. 17 para. (1) of Government Ordinance no. 25/2014 regarding the employment and secondment of foreigners on the Romanian territory and for the modification and completion of some normative acts regarding the regime of foreigners in Romania, approved by Law no. 14/2016, with subsequent amendments and completions.
(2) For the people provided in par. (1) is extended the right to stay for work purposes according to the Government Ordinance no. 194/2002 on the regime of foreigners in Romania, republished, with subsequent amendments and completions, without the obligation to obtain a long-stay visa for employment.
(3) The employment of the Ukrainian citizens, coming from the armed conflict zone in Ukraine, who do not have documents proving the professional qualification or work experience necessary for employment, can be achieved, for a period of 12 months. with the possibility of extension for periods of 6 months, for a maximum of one year, on the basis of their declaration on their own responsibility that they meet the conditions of professional qualification and work experience necessary for the job to be employed and have no criminal record to be incompatible with the activity they carry out or are going to carry out on the Romanian territory.
(4) The employment procedure for the persons provided in par. (3) shall be approved by order of the Minister of Labor and Social Solidarity, within 5 working days from the entry into force of this GEO;
(5) The employment of the persons mentioned in par. (3) is made in compliance with the provisions of art. 29 and art. 31 of Law no. 53/2003 – Labor Code, republished, with subsequent amendments and completions, regarding the prior verification of the professional and personal skills of the person requesting employment, respectively establishing a probationary period for verifying the employee’s skills, at the conclusion of the individual employment contract.
(6) The provisions of par. (3) do not apply in the case of the Ukrainian citizens from the armed conflict zone in Ukraine, who wish to access or practice in Romania, independently or as an employee, the professions of doctor, dentist, pharmacist, generalist nurse, midwife, veterinarian and architect or one of the professions provided in the annexes no. 2, 4 and 8 of Law no. 200/2004 on the recognition of diplomas and professional qualifications for regulated professions in Romania, with subsequent amendments and completions.
(7) The Ukrainian citizens provided in par. (1) have access to the unemployment insurance system, to the measures to prevent unemployment and to the measures for stimulating employment, granted following the registration at the employment agencies of the county, respectively of the municipality of Bucharest, under the conditions established for the citizens Romanians by the provisions of Law no. 76/2002 on the unemployment insurance system and employment stimulation, with subsequent amendments and completions.
Conclusions – Ukrainian citizens who do not request a form of protection (refugee or asylum seeker in Romania)
The provisions of EGO 20/2022 expressly state that, if Ukrainian citizens do not request a form of protection (refugee or asylum seeker in Romania), they may be employed without a notice of employment. Their right of residence will be extended, meaning that their residence permit will be issued for work purposes, without the obligation to obtain/ present a long-stay visa for employment.
The Ukrainian citizens who do not apply for a form of protection (refugee or asylum seeker in Romania) are thus exempted from presenting a residence visa for work purposes when applying for a residence permit on the basis of CIM.
Conclusions – Ukrainian citizens requesting a form of protection (refugee or asylum seeker in Romania)
If the Ukrainian citizens apply and obtain a form of protection in Romania (asylum seeker or refugee) we have other exceptions from the obligation to obtain the prior employment permit for them. We have in this respect the provisions of art. 3 para. (2) lit. i) and k) of GO 25/2014 which shows that (2) By exception from para. (1), it is not necessary to obtain the employment permit for the employment on the territory of Romania of foreigners from the following categories: j) foreigners who have acquired a form of protection in Romania; k) asylum seekers from the date on which they have the right to receive access to the labor market according to Law no. 122/2006 on asylum in Romania, with subsequent amendments and completions, if it is still in the procedure of determining a form of protection.
Therefore, if the Ukrainian citizens are asylum seekers or refugees in Romania according to the law, their Romanian employers no longer have to obtain the employment permit for them. The procedure for requesting and obtaining asylum is provided by Law no. 122/2006.
Given the fact that there are already extremely many requests from the Ukrainian citizens at the Refugee Office, which are being dealt with considerable delay, and the fact that their number will increase considerably in the future, but also the fact that once the application for protection has been resolved (or within 3 months if the asylum application has not been resolved within this period), the employment of the Ukrainian citizens who have applied for or is requesting a form of protection is not currently considered. Under these conditions, the employment formalities should be postponed until the Ukrainian citizens acquire the status of asylum seeker in Romania or at the moment when their application for asylum has not yet been resolved for a period of 3 months, according to Law 122/2006.
Employment of Ukrainian citizens who do not have documents certifying the necessary qualification and experience – according to GEO 20/2022
It should be noted that for Ukrainian citizens who do not have the necessary qualifications and experience, their employment can be done for a maximum of 12 months (extended to 6 months for a maximum of another 1 year) based on a declaration on oath. The procedure for these people is to be established by Order of the Minister of Labor. According to para. (5), the probationary period will be mandatory for these people.
In principle, the Romanian employers of Ukrainian citizens have mainly the additional obligations provided in art. 34 of GO 25/2014. Otherwise, the same obligations will remain as a Romanian employer for employees of Romanian / EU citizens in general.
Art. 34 of GO 25/2014
(1) The employer/ Beneficiary of the provision of services who has employed / seconded a foreigner from the category of those provided in art. 3 para. (2) or to art. 20 para. (2) has the obligation to communicate to the General Inspectorate for Immigration, within 10 days from the date of starting their activity on the Romanian territory, the copy of the individual employment contract, the copy of the secondment deed, as well as the documents attesting the affiliation to one of the categories. provided in art. 3 para. (2) or to art. 20 para. (2), as appropriate.
(2) The employer/ Beneficiary of the provision of services provided in par. (1) has the obligation to communicate to the General Inspectorate for Immigration, within 10 days, the modification or termination of the individual employment contract concluded with the foreigner or, as the case may be, the termination of his secondment.
Temporary staffing agents cannot directly employ Ukrainian citizens
It should be noted that the above exceptions and situations do not apply to the case of Temporary Employment Agents, who cannot directly hire non-EU citizens and implicitly Ukrainian citizens on a temporary employment contract, if these citizens have not established their domicile or residence in Romania. In this sense we mention the restriction from art. 2 para. 2 of GD 1256/2011 which shows that foreign nationals or stateless persons, domiciled or residing in Romania, may be employed by a temporary employment agent, based on the work permit or residence permit for work purposes issued / issued accordingly laws.
Therefore, currently TSA and temporary employment contracts for Ukrainian citizens are excluded, if these citizens do not have their domicile or residence in Romania.