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Immigration - Work Permit in St Maarten

The 'National Ordinance on Labour by Foreigners' (Landsverordening Arbeid Vreemdelingen - LAV) provides for rules with regard to the granting of permits for the employment of foreigners. A (temporary) work permit may be rejected for reasons, which have to do with protection of the local labour market.

In principle, all employers who require a foreign employee must file a request for a work permit. This does not apply to the following:

        • persons who have admission by right;
        • spouses or partners who have a long-term or common-law relationship with a former Antillean or Dutch European, or with a foreigner who has become naturalised;
        • persons who work autonomously;
        • persons who have a residence permit granted by the Minister of Justice without prohibition for working.

According to the LAV an application for a (temporary) work permit must be decided upon within a period of six weeks. If the authoritative body fails to do so, an administrative procedure can be followed to object this indecision.

Note that tourists on a business trip do not require a work permit, provided that they do not perform work for which they receive payment from a local employer. However, a work permit must be applied for in case work is performed for which payment is received from a local employer e.g. musicians who enter St Maarten to perform.





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