The application process for a Mauritius work permit can be a complex and detailed procedure, and it may vary depending on your nationality, the type of work you intend to do, and your specific circumstances, but there is a more or less standard set of rules to understand and documents you will need to have at the ready before your application.
It is often also advised to check in with professionals and consultants regarding the specific nature of your application, so as to avoid difficulties during the process.
There are a number of requirements for someone looking to apply for a Mauritian work permit, with a few exceptions that can be made for those with specific skills and/or expertise. The age range for those looking to apply is between 20 and 60 years old but of course, there are exceptions.
Visitors on tourist visas are regrettably not allowed to take up employment and applications done on their behalf are not entertained.
If you are already married to a Mauritian and can provide a valid marriage certificate, then you do not require a work permit.
In most cases, you’ll need an actual job offer before you can apply for a work permit. Once you have a job offer, your prospective employer in Mauritius must apply for a Letter of Approval (LoA) from the appropriate authority.
The process can be handled, depending on the type of work you’re applying for, by the Board of Investment (BOI) or the Passport and Immigration Office.
Here is a list of relevant documents to have prepared prior to application.
- A valid passport
- The passport should be valid for at least six months after the return date. Your passport must have at least two blank pages.
- Four passport-sized photos
- The photo should be in line with Mauritius visa photo requirements and should be taken within the last three to six months.
- A copy of previous visas (if any)
- Copies of academic and professional qualifications of the employee
- Curriculum Vitae (CV)
- A copy of your residence permit
- Applicable to applicants not residing in their home country. The residence permit must be valid for at least three months after leaving Mauritius.
- A bank statement document for the last three months
- This document must prove that you are financially stable and dependable enough to support yourself while in Mauritius
- A flight ticket or a document that proves that you have booked your flights
- A travel itinerary
- Proof of accommodation such as a hotel reservation, a rental agreement or a letter of invitation
- Detailed evidence that the position was advertised in A5 format by the employer in at least two newspapers
- A fee payment receipt
- A marriage certificate (if applicable)
- A birth certificate (if applicable)
- A work contract (if applicable)
More specific permits will require more specific documents, so it is advisable to double-check with a relevant authority or consultant regarding which documents are missing from your application.
Some sectors will also require additional documents such as the Bakery, Fishing, Tourism, and Education sectors.
Employers have to pay a processing fee of MUR 700 in respect of each permit application. Furthermore, on approval of said applications, the fees have to be paid within a period of 1 month. If payment is not made within the given timeframe, the decision to
grant work permit will be rescinded immediately.
You can submit your work permit application, along with the required documents and fees, to the relevant authority (BOI or Passport and Immigration Office).
The processing time for a Mauritius work permit can vary but typically takes approximately five working days if the application fulfils all of the requested requirements. It can of course range from that to a few weeks, and the processing time can be extended if the applicant provides missing, incomplete, or incorrect information.
Applicants are advised to apply well in advance but are specifically required to apply at least one month before travelling to Mauritius.
You may be required to undergo a medical examination in Mauritius as part of the work permit process to ensure you are in good health. This of course includes bloodwork and X-rays, as well as additional tests for Filariasis if you are applying from the countries below:
- Ivory Coast
Police clearance must also be provided for all the countries you have lived in the past year. Within 14 days of your arrival in Mauritius, you should register with the local police station. Your employer may assist you with this process.
Work permits in Mauritius are typically issued for a specific period. If you wish to extend your stay or continue working in Mauritius, you will need to apply for a renewal before your current permit expires.
The renewal application should be submitted to the same authority that issued your initial work permit, and you should expect to pay applicable renewal fees and any additional charges for the process.
Some permits have a maximum renewal period, after which you may need to explore other immigration options.
When a company intends to hire foreign workers in large numbers, they must initially obtain Permission in Principle before initiating the application process for a Mauritius Work Permit.
Employers are allotted a nine-month window from the date of receiving this Permission in Principle to submit their applications. Failure to meet this deadline will result in no extensions being granted, necessitating companies to file new requests for Permission in Principle if they wish to proceed.
This stringent timeframe ensures the timely and efficient processing of work permit applications.
Conclusion and Advice
The specific requirements and procedures for obtaining a work permit in Mauritius may change over time. It is always advised to seek legal advice to ensure you have the most up-to-date information and acquire guidance during the process.
It’s also possible that new permit categories will be introduced in the years to come, so make sure to consistently check in with the relevant Mauritian authorities as often as you can.
Written by Simon Carletti, PR and Creative Supervisor