Residency amendments adopted

  • 2012-07-11

VILNIUS - The Seimas adopted amendments to the Law on the Legal Status of Aliens aimed at harmonizing the national legislation with the legal framework of the European Union, reports ELTA. The amendments were adopted by 75 votes in favor, with none against and 6 abstentions.
The purpose of the amendments is to establish a scheme setting out residence conditions for highly skilled professionals entering Lithuania by transposing the provisions of the Council Directive on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals.

The amendments set forth new grounds for issuing temporary residence permits, define the concept of high professional qualification, specify the grounds for the right of a citizen from an EU member state and his/her family member to temporary residency, and provide for more favorable entry and work conditions in Lithuania for highly skilled professionals and long-term EU residents.

The new legal act stipulates that high professional qualification means qualification which is certified by a higher education diploma or, in the cases provided for in the Lithuania legislation, by professional experience of at least 5 years equivalent to the qualification acquired at a higher education institution and necessary for the profession intended. This could also be indicated by an employer’s commitment to employ a foreigner according to an employment contract.
According to the adopted amendments, a foreigner planning to take up a highly qualified employment position will be able to obtain or replace a temporary residence permit for the period of 1 year. The law stipulates that for the first two years of legal employment in Lithuania, a foreigner will be able to work only for the employer that invited him/her to do a highly qualified job.