Visas and Work Permits 5 min

Work permits and visas in Cyprus: an employer’s guide

Written by Sally Flaxman
Sally Flaxman

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Hiring an employee in Cyprus or relocating an existing team member to the country comes with both opportunities and risks. While it can add more diversity to your team, there are also regulatory issues to be mindful of. Complying with international tax practices, for example, is one area many employers struggle with. Alternatively, the employer may fail to secure the correct work permits or visas that allow an individual to legally work in the country.

Working with an employer of record (EOR) like Remote removes the hassle and risks of hiring abroad. An EOR takes on the legal responsibility of hiring and paying employees and minimizes the stress and hassle involved in global employment. Remote’s team of employment experts can advise you on local labor rules, immigration guidelines, and tax practices — making global hiring stress-free.

This article explains the work permits and visas process in Cyprus, eligibility requirements, and how Remote makes compliance easier if you’re hiring in Cyprus.

The importance of immigration compliance in Cyprus

Many governments are becoming increasingly aware of individuals working on tourist visas and are cracking down. If individuals are found to work in Cyprus without the correct paperwork, both the employer and employee can face financial penalties, legal issues, and reputational damage.

Employers who wish to hire remote workers or digital nomads for over six months should also consider the risks of permanent establishment which are higher while working with distributed teams.

Who is eligible to work in Cyprus?

All non-citizens of Cyprus (apart from citizens of EU member states) have to obtain a work permit which authorizes them to work in Cyprus while still in their country of residence. 

Certain categories of workers and nationals of certain countries can enter Turkey without a visa. However, if individuals want to work in Cyprus, they’ll still need a Cyprus work visa, which authorizes them to live and work in the country for the long term.

The employer has to apply for a Cyprus work permit on behalf of the employee and a residence permit if you intend to extend your stay in the country beyond 90 days.

How is the European Union Blue Card applicable?

As an EU Territory, Cyprus enables non-EU/EEA citizens to stay and work in Cyprus (or in Europe at large) under a European Union Blue Card. It enables non-EU/EEA citizens to first live and work in an EU Member State or Territory and, ultimately, gain EU permanent residence and citizenship.

What are the eligibility requirements for a work visa in Cyprus?

Generally, no formal or specific eligibility requirements for work visas are mentioned. So, non-citizens can stay and work legally in Cyprus — except for Temporary Resident visa applicants or remote workers (for up to six months).

That said, certain visa types may enable non-citizens to apply for a work permit in Cyprus:

  • Short Stay Visa (Category C) entitles non-citizens to stay in Cyprus for up to 90 days.

  • Multiple Entry Visa (Category C) is granted for up to five years and entitles non-citizens who are frequent visitors to Cyprus and EU countries to stay in Cyprus for up to three months in any consecutive six months.

  • Visa Extension (Category C) is granted for an additional 90 days after an initial 90-day stay expires. 

No specific eligibility requirements are mentioned for each visa class. 

What are the long-stay visa types in Cyprus?

Cyprus has only one type of long-stay visa: Long Stay Visa (Category D), which enables non-citizens to stay in Cyprus for up to one year.

No specific eligibility requirements are mentioned to get a Long Stay Visa (Category D). 

What is the process for employee work visa sponsorship in Cyprus?

There is no formal employee work visa sponsorship in Cyprus. Once an employment agreement between the employer and employee is finalized, a non-citizen candidate can proceed to apply for a visa to enter Cyprus under any said C-Category class.

In addition to an invitation letter, non-citizens accepted by a Cyprus-based employer need to provide an Assumption of Responsibility to Host form, as indicated above. 

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There are no digital nomad visas or programs in Cyprus — at least so far. Instead, remote workers can still stay and live in Cyprus as digital nomads only for up to six months, after which an application to stay longer is approved on a case-by-case basis. 

How Remote makes compliance in Cyprus so much easier

When you’re hiring and paying non-citizens in Cyprus, there are regulatory risks you could face, the least of which are fines and the worst being civil and criminal offenses.

To anticipate complications and manage immigration-related procedures in Cyprus, it’s worth partnering with an EOR. Remote can minimize legal risks and help you hire compliantly in Cyprus while removing the hassle of managing payroll, benefits, and taxes for your international employees. Specifically, we can help you avoid permanent establishment risks and provide continued support with local (and evolving) labor laws.

Learn more about the steps involved in employee relocation, by checking out Remote’s Relocation Guide. Or contact our Mobility experts for advice on hiring or relocating your employees internationally.

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