09 Oct 10 OBLIGATIONS OF FOREIGN EMPLOYERS AND EMPLOYEES IN GHANA
There are obligations for foreign employers and employees in Ghana! Do you intend to hire an expatriate in Ghana? Are you an expatriate intending to resign and take-on a new job offer? What are the requirements and obligations for your dependents on residence permit?
Immigration compliance can be a burden and may result in unbudgeted cost and expenses if not managed well.
As an organization that engages a foreign employee in Ghana, it is the responsibility of the employer to take the following steps when the appointment of an expatriate is terminated;
- Notify the Ghana Immigration Service
- Cancel the current or expiring work and residence permit to prevent accruing monthly penalty payments of $100 for non-renewal.
- Take steps to ensure the expatriate exits Ghana upon termination of appointment.
In the event that the employer refuses to do so, the company will be held liable for this. These are among several other requirements for both the employer and employee.
OBLIGATIONS FOR EXPATRIATE EMPLOYEES AND THEIR EMPLOYERS IN GHANA
- No foreigner shall employ or accept employment in Ghana unless that person is granted a work permit or Immigrant quota.
- Work permit or Immigrant quota is an authorization granted to an employer or employee to engage in lawful and gainful employment in Ghana.
- Work permit or Immigrant quota specifies the job title and indicates the employer by whom that person is employed and the holder cannot engage in any other employment, business, profession or occupation in Ghana for reward than what is specified by the work permit or Immigrant quota.
- Foreign spouses with special skills may on application to the Minister of Interior be issued with work permits to work so long as they remain with partners who have lawful residential status in Ghana.
- A foreigner that has been granted work permit or immigrant quota cannot start working immediately in Ghana unless that person is granted residence permit by the Comptroller General of Immigration to remain and work in the country.
- When a foreign national begins to work for an employer in Ghana, the employer will have to give notice to the issuing authority for work permit or Immigrant quota no later than seven days after commencement of employment in a prescribed form, indicating the commencement date with a copy to the Comptroller General of Immigration. Additionally, a letter of guarantee in respect of repatriation expenses of the employee should be submitted to same.
- Similarly, the employee will have to give notice of the commencement date to the issuing authority not later than 7 days after the commencement of employment with a copy to the Comptroller General of Immigration.
- If a foreign national ceases to work in Ghana the employer will have to give notice of the cessation not later than 7 days after the cessation to the issuing authority with a copy to the Comptroller General of Immigration and shall comply with the directions of the Comptroller General as to the arrangements for the repatriation of the employee and his dependents, if any. The employee will also have to give likewise notification.
- An individual or body corporate to whom work permit or immigrant quota is granted, is obliged to submit annual returns, not later than the 14th day of January in each year to the issuing authority with a copy to the Comptroller General, giving names and addresses of all foreign employees in their employment as at 1st January. Other particulars which may be prescribed will also have to be provided.
- An employer is liable to pay all repatriation expenses of an employee and his dependents if the employee ceases to work for the employer and repatriation becomes necessary.
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