1. When will Identity Malta Agency start reaccepting new single work permits?

Identity Malta Agency is engaged in discussions with its stakeholders, including the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and European Affairs, Jobsplus, health authorities and Malta Police Force Immigration Section, in order to start reaccepting new single permit applications from 3rd August 2020.

All new single permit applications will be rigorously assessed by Identity Malta and its stakeholders, taking into consideration the latest labour market testing and applicable legislation.

Once new single permit applications reopen, approvals will be granted without prejudice to:

  • any further approval that may be required by the Maltese Health Authorities in order for the applicant to be able to proceed to Malta (as per Legal Notices 244, 255, 280 and 290 of 2020, and/or any subsequent related LN which may be issued by the Health Authorities);
  • any visa requirements especially if the applicant originates from a country where there is no facilitation yet for the issue of visa;
  • any restrictions regarding travelling to Malta imposed by member states through which the applicant would need to transit in order to reach Malta.
  1. What will happen to single permit applications which were put on hold?

In light of the developments of the labour market situation and requirements, such pending applications will be reassessed, and a final decision will be communicated soon.

  1. What will happen to the expired letters of approval in principle?

Following further discussions, Identity Malta Agency will be issuing new letters with extended dates to successful single permit applicants who are still abroad and whose letter of approval in principle has expired. This is without prejudice to:

  • any further approval that may be required by the Maltese Health Authorities in order for the applicant to be able to proceed to Malta (as per Legal Notices 244, 255, 280 and 290 of 2020, and/or any subsequent related LN which may be issued by the Health Authorities);
  • any visa requirements especially if the applicant originates from a country where there is no facilitation yet for the issue of visa;
  • any restrictions regarding travelling to Malta imposed by member states through which the applicant would need to transit in order to reach Malta.

Applicants who were notified to proceed to Malta and were granted a visa from a Maltese mission abroad, which has now expired, will need to resubmit a new visa application. Such applications may be acceded to if it is possible to travel to Malta again, the employer declares that s/he still wishes to engage the applicant and there are no new restrictions imposed by the Health Authorities which may impede travel to Malta.

  1. When are visa centres expected to open again?

The reopening of visa centres highly depends on the general health situation in the concerned countries, whereby, both consulates and external visa service providers would need to be in a position to operate in line with any current or future EU recommendations as well as local Health Authorities regulations.

  1. What to do in case your visa has expired?

Applicants who were notified to proceed to Malta and were granted a visa from a Maltese mission abroad, which has now expired, will need to resubmit a new visa application. Such applications may be acceded to if it is possible to travel to Malta again, the employer declares that s/he still wishes to engage the applicant and there are no new restrictions imposed by the Health Authorities which may impede travel to Malta.

Applicants who originate from a country where there is no Maltese mission are required to seek the Central Visa Unit’s authorisation to travel to a Maltese diplomatic mission so that they can resubmit a new visa application if their original visa has expired. On the other hand, applicants who originate from a country which has a Maltese mission present may proceed directly in order to resubmit a new visa application, provided that the Maltese mission has resumed with normal operations.

  1. How can family members and other third-country nationals in possession of a temporary residence permit which has recently expired, return to Malta?

If such persons originate from safe corridor countries and require a visa in order to be able to travel to Malta, then they will need to reapply once again for a new visa once service has resumed at the Maltese missions abroad. Such applicants should send an email to the Central VISA Unit on cvu.ima@gov.mt in order to seek their authorisation.

This is without prejudice to:

  • any further approval that may be required by the Maltese Health Authorities so that the applicant can proceed to Malta (as per Legal Notices 244, 255, 280 and 290 of 2020, and/or any subsequent related LN which may be issued by the Health Authorities);
  • any visa requirements especially if the applicant originates from a country where there is no facilitation for the issue of visa;
  • any restrictions regarding travelling to Malta imposed by member states through which the applicant would need to transit in order to reach Malta.
  1. How to apply for a new single permit?

Applicants should submit a single permit application online via https://singlepermit.gov.mt/, once the employer has registered on singlepermit.ima@gov.mt and s/he has initiated the application process. Employers encountering difficulties using the online single permit platform should send an email to singlepermit.ima@gov.mt. The online platform also accepts renewals as well as change in employment applications.

  1. How long does it take to issue a residence card? 

The process to apply for a single permit emanates from EU Directive 2011/98/EU and under normal circumstances, where the need for additional security checks or verifications on the applicant’s suitability does not arise, the average processing time takes between six to eight weeks, which falls well within the four months’ timeframe stipulated by the said EU Directive.

  1. On what basis are TCNs given ‘temporary authorisation to work’ when receiving the blue paper?

In accordance to Subsidiary Legislation 217.17, a third country national may submit an application whilst he is still abroad or is legally staying in Maltese territory or that of another Member State. Only once the applicant’s request has been successfully processed, and all necessary verifications and assessments were carried out by Identity Malta, Jobsplus and Immigration Police, can s/he proceed to Malta provided that s/he has the necessary authorisation to enter Schengen territory. During the interim period between the person’s date of arrival and the issue of the residence permit in a card format, a temporary authorisation to work is granted by means of an ad hoc document once the applicant has finalised his/her application in Malta and had his/her biometric details captured.

Applicants who are already in Malta and have an approval in principle for their new, change in job or renewal application are also issued with a Temporary Authorisation to Work after having their biometric data captured.

This temporary authorization to work is granted on the provisions that the originally endorsed employer shall submit an engagement form to Jobplus within seven days from the issuance of the said interim permit in order to regularise his/her employment. Should the implied conditions of the temporary authorization to work be breached, the permit will be revoked

  1. Are full-time employees in possession of a valid single permit allowed to work part-time employment too?

No. They have to apply for a part time employment license with Jobsplus. 

  1. Can a renewal applicant continue to work while his/her application is being processed by Identity Malta Agency? 

Yes, applicants may continue to work while their renewal application is being processed provided that the conditions of employment have not changed. It should be emphasized that renewal applications should be submitted in due time before the document’s validity expires and should the permit expire, applicants should keep a copy of the Interim Receipt.

  1. Can a third country national studying in Malta engage in employment after successfully completing his/her course of studies? 

Third-country national students who have successfully completed their course of studies at Level 5 upwards are, by means of existing legislation, provided with a residence permit for job seeking activities and  can apply for full-time employment provided that they submit proof that they have successfully completed their course of studies. Such applications will still be subject to the latest labour market testing. Other third country nationals do not enjoy any job-seeking facilities. 

  1. When is it possible for a redundant third-country national to submit a new application following his/her termination of employment? 

During the COVID-19 period Identity Malta Agency adopted a more lenient approach. However, as from Monday 3rd August 2020 Identity Malta Agency will revert to pre-COVID-19 practices allowing for a period of 10 days from the termination date during which a new application can be submitted.