“General” Work Visa Renewal – including waiver
Candidates who do not qualify in the Intra-Company Transfer or Critical Skills Work Visa categories are required to apply on the “General” Work Visa category. This category is only suitable to candidates who have secured employment with a South Africa employer. The process of obtaining a “General” Work Visa is an onerous one. The South African employer (through ourselves) is required to gain support from the Department of Labour (DoL). The Act requires the employer to apply to the DoL proving that despite a diligent search the prospective employer has been unable to find a suitable citizen or permanent resident with the necessary qualifications or skills and experience equivalent to those of the applicant. The employer will be required to motivate why it requires the skills and experience of the candidate as opposed to a South African similarly skilled. If we are mandated to assist you, we shall of course draft all the necessary documentation including the advertisement. Please bear in mind this leg of the application process takes on average 1-3 months. It is therefore imperative for you to start the application process as soon as possible
Candidates who currently hold a “General” Work Visa and wish to extend their stay in South Africa, while working for the same employer, may apply to the Minister to waive the Department of Labour certificate requirement as the Act only applies to “prospective employers”. Once the waiver has been granted, the candidate may renew their “General” Work Visa for a further 5 years and this can all be done in South Africa.
A “general” work visa may be issued to any foreign national who intends to take up employment in South Africa on the basis of a firm offer of employment. The application requires a certificate from the Department of Labour confirming that despite a diligent search the prospective employer has been unable to find a suitable citizen or permanent resident with qualifications or skills and experience equivalent to those of the applicant. This permit is issued for a maximum of five years at a time and is renewable.
To apply, the following documents are required –
Department of Labour Application:
- A duly completed application for Visa to Temporarily Sojourn in the Republic (DHA-1738) form signed by the applicant.
- Power of attorney where required.
- A copy of the title page of the candidate’s passport.
- Job description of vacancy applied for South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) certification of evaluation.
- A contract of employment signed by both the candidate and the employer.
- Workplace Skills Plan (WSP).
- Employment Equity Plan (EEP).
- The original advertisement of the post/position as it appeared in the national printed media. The advertisement must comply with regulation 16(5).
- A list of all the unsuitable candidates who applied for the position, this list must include the applicants’ full names, ID numbers and the reasons why they did not qualify for the position.
- Copies of the CV’s of all the unsuitable candidates who applied for the position.
- CV of the applicant along with letter of reference from past employers.
- Copy of existing visa(s) valid or expired.
- A letter of motivation from the employer as required in regulation 16(4)(d).
- Department of Labour ESSA Request Form.
Work Visa Application:
- A duly completed application for Visa to Temporarily Sojourn in the Republic (DHA-1740) form signed by the applicant.
- A passport valid for no less than 30 days after the expiry of intended visit.
- Medical and radiological reports.
- A police clearance certificate from each country in which the applicant has resided for 12 months or longer since the age of 18 years.
- A letter of motivation from the employer as required in regulation 18(3)(d) and (e).
- Full particulars of the employer including proof of registration with the Registrar of Companies.
- A certificate by the Department of Labour or an extract from the database of a benchmarking organisation stipulating the salary earned by employees occupying similar positions in the Republic of South Africa.
Submissions in South Africa
Applications submitted in South Africa at the VFS office take approximately 8 weeks.
Department of Home Affairs Application Fee – R1520
VFS Service Fee – R1350
Applications that are submitted abroad in the applicants home country or country of permanent residence are generally processed withing 30 days, this may differ slightly from one foreign mission to the next.
An amount equal to R1520 in local currency