How to apply for a Department of Labour Certificate for Work Permit
Department of Labour Certificate for Work Permit
In 2014, the Department of Home Affairs decided to update the immigration regulations and made major changes which affected many foreign nationals.
One of the changes was how to apply for a general work visa. Previously candidates or employers had to place an advert in a local newspaper, obtain their SAQA certificate and lastly apply for a salary benchmarking certificate.
So after the immigration regulations, employers had to obtain a certificate from the Department of Labour before they could apply for a General Work Visa.
If you need information on how to apply for a general work permit in South Africa, then our blog post has all the information you need.
Are you probably wondering what is a labour certificate in South Africa?
You cannot apply for a general work visa if you are on a tourist visa for South Africa.
So let’s dive in and find out how things have changed in 2022.
What is a Department of Labour Certificate in South Africa
The certificate is a way to prove to the Department of Home Affairs that your employer has exhausted all avenues in first finding a suitable South African citizen or permanent resident.
The Department of Home wants to confirm the following requirements have been met and are in order:
- The employer has exhausted all avenues in first finding a suitable South African citizen or permanent resident before awarding you the job offer.
- You have the necessary experience and qualifications for the position advertised.
- The salary and benefits offered to you by the employer are not inferior to the average salary and benefits of SA citizens in a similar role.
- Your contract of employment must stipulate your employment conditions which are signed both by you and your employer and are in line with the labour standards of SA. Your contract should be conditional upon your visa being approved.
So which visas does this apply to?
- General Work Visa
- Corporate Visas
- Renewing your existing general work visa
- Changing from a temporary residence visa to a general work visa
How to get a labour certificate – the new process
Previously your application was submitted directly through VFS, however since the new process employers now first need to obtain what’s called a Visa Final Notification.
It is noted that the foreign applicant cannot complete this process and that your employer should complete this process.
So what are the steps your employer needs to take:
- The employer must complete a DEL (Department of Employment & Labour) registration form.
- Once registration has been accepted, the Department of Employment & Labour will then provide the employer with suitable South African citizen or permanent resident candidates. The employer has to notify DEL whether they have employed any of the candidates sent to them.
- If none of the candidates is suitable for the position, then the employer needs to complete a visa application form with supporting documents and submit the application to a DEL provincial office. Contact details and the employer’s business address must be submitted for future audits.
- Once the application has been processed by DEL, then the visa finalisation notification will be sent to the employer. If the recommendation is positive then the applicant may go ahead and apply for the general work visa. A negative recommendation may be appealed directly to the Department of Home Affairs.
So now an applicant may not apply through VFS or a South African embassy without the visa finalization notice.
This letter must accompany your application for a general work visa. There are new visa application forms which must be used and DEL will now vet your application as well.
The Department of Employment and Labour has given a processing time of 30 days for an application.
So how does this affect the Department of Labour Certificate Waiver?
The Department of Home has not communicated anything about the waiver process and the Department of Employment & Labour.
For those who are not familiar, a waiver is a written request to the Department of Home Affairs asking for permission to waive certain requirements from a specific visa.
In this case, it would be to waive the Department of Labour process.
VFS at this point is still accepting waivers for the General work visa.
The waiver letter for immigration in South Africa can give you some more tips about the waiver letter.
At this point, the processing of waivers by the Department of Home Affairs is taking anything between 5 – 10 months.