Work permits

Who needs them

Work permits

If you don’t qualify to live and work in Greece by birthright, family relationship or as an EEA national, obtaining a work permit may be difficult or impossible.

Greek employers must apply for a work permit on behalf of a non-EEA national whom they wish to employ. If you’re a national of an EEA country you don’t require official approval to live or work in Greece, although you still require a residence permit. If you visit Greece to look for a job, you have three months to find employment or set up in business and once employment has been found you must apply for a residence permit within one week.

Greece has a virtual freeze on the employment of non-EEA nationals, which has been strengthened in recent years by the high unemployment rate and the fact that Greece has been forced to accept numerous EEA nationals looking for work. Before granting or renewing work permits certain factors are taken into account, including the level of unemployment in the relevant profession or activity and the number of vacancies in the profession or trade. Certain non-EEA nationals are given preference, particularly those of Greek origin or those married to a Greek citizen.

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