How To Enter Vietnam Legally with Visas and Temporary Residence Card

Foreign visitors have been to Vietnam for purposes to visit friends, family members, travel, or work.

As Vietnam has become more attractive for economic investment and tourism destinations, more and more have been seeking to enter Vietnam for work purpose, and leisure purpose.  It is important that travelers have suitable visas and entrance cards, and follow the laws.  Failing to follow the law on immigration would result in blacklist, deportation creating unnecessary hassles, especially for business men seeking investment in Vietnam.

ANT Lawyers has assisted a number of clients with immigration matters due to overstaying time as prescribed on visas, being black-listed due to failing to adhere to regulations of work permits and have learnt that in many cases the client do not have full understanding of consequence of obeying the immigration laws in Vietnam.

On Jun 30th, 2016, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued the Cicular No: 04/2016/TT-BNG details Vietnam regulation on entry, exit, transit and residence of foreigners in Vietnam that layouts process and procedures in regard to applying for Visas, Temporary Residence Card to enter and stay in Vietnam legally for the right purpose.

Pursuant to the Law on Entry, Exit, Transit and Residence by foreigners in Vietnam dated June 16, 2014;

Pursuant to the Law on issue of legislative documents dated June 03, 2008;

Pursuant to the Government’s Decree No.58/2013/ND-CP defining the functions, responsibilities, entitlements and organizational structure of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Pursuant to the Government’s Decree No. 64/2015/ND-CP dated August 06, 2015 on cooperation among Ministries, Ministerial-level agencies, People’s Committees of provinces and centrally-affiliated provinces (hereinafter refer to as “province”) in management of entry, exit, transit and residence by foreigners in Vietnam;

The Minister of Foreign Affairs hereby issues this Circular providing guideline for procedures for issue of visa and temporary residence cards, and extension of temporary residence permit to foreigners in Vietnam within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Chapter I

GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 1. Scope

This Circular provides a number of guidelines for procedures for issue of visas and temporary residence cards and extension of temporary residence permits to foreigners in Vietnam within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as stipulated in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4, Article 8 of the Law on entry, exit, transit and residence by foreigners in Vietnam (hereinafter refer to as ” Law on entry and exit”).

Article 2. Regulated entities

This Circular applied to foreigners who enter, exit or temporarily reside in Vietnam within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam and relevant entities.

Chapter II

POWER AND PROCEDURES FOR ISSUE OF VISAS AND TEMPORARY RESIDENCE CARDS AND EXTENSION OF TEMPORARY RESIDENCE PERMITS

Article 3. Power of various agencies to issue visas and temporary residence cards and extend temporary residence permits

1. The Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (hereinafter referred to as “Consular Department”) shall deal with requests/applications for visas and temporary residence card and extension of temporary residence permit to foreigners specified in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4 of Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit.

2. The Directorate of State Protocol of the Minister of Foreign Affairs (hereinafter referred to as “Directorate of State Protocol”) shall process applications for temporary residence cards by those specified in clause 3, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit (except for consuls of foreign countries working in Ho Chi Minh City, their spouse, under-18-year-old children and accompanied assistants on their term of office).

3. The Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh – Ministry of Foreign Affairs (hereinafter referred to as “Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh”) shall:

a) Process applications for visas and extension of temporary residence permits of foreigners specified in clauses 1, 2 and 4, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit temporarily residing in Quang Nam province and Danang city to the South of Vietnam.

b)process applications for temporary residence cards by foreigners as consuls of foreign countries ‘consulates located in Ho Chi Minh City, their spouse, under-18-year-ol children and accompanied assistants in their term of office.

4. Every Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad shall:

a) Receive applications for visa under clause 2, Article 4 hereof, passports or equivalent documents (hereinafter referred to as “passport”), visa application form (using form NA1 enclosed with the Circular No.04/2015/TT-BCA providing application forms for entry, exit, transit and residence by foreigners in Vietnam dated January 05, 2015 by the Ministry of Public Security –hereinafter referred to as the Circular No.04/2015/TT-BCA) of foreigners specified in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit and report to the Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh.

b) Issue visas to foreigners specified in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit according to the reports of the Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh.

Article 4. Procedures for processing visa applications /requests

1. Every organization or authority that guarantees/invites foreigners to Vietnam (hereinafter referred to as “guaranteeing entity”) specified in clauses 2 and 3, Article 15 of the Law on Entry and Exit shall directly submit a visa application or request to the Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (or other agencies governed by regulations) of the home country of foreigners specified in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4 of Article 8 of the law on Entry and Exit shall submit a visa request enclosed with the foreigner’s passport and visa application form (using form NA1 enclosed with the Circular No.04/2015/TT-BCA) to the Vietnamese resident or non-resident.

The Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad shall transfer aforesaid documents to the Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh to consider granting a visa intra vires.

2. The visa application/request includes:

a) A diplomatic note or written request for extension of temporary residence permit which specifies full name, date of birth, nationality, gender, passport number and symbol, date of issue and expiry date of passport, occupation and position, purpose of entry, effective duration of visa, type of visa and issuer.

b) In case the foreigner comes to Vietnam for visit members of any diplomatic mission of his/her countries in Vietnam, a copy of ID of the above-mentioned member is required, in addition to documents mentioned in point a, clause 2 of this article.

c) If the foreigner is a contractual staff of a diplomatic mission of his/her country in Vietnam, a copy of the valid employment contract is required, besides documents specified in point a, clause 2 of this Article.

d) In case the foreigner is on the payroll increase of the foreign diplomatic mission in Vietnam, the diplomatic note of payroll increase of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of his/her home country  is required, besides documents specified in points a, clause 2 of this Article.

3. Visa application forms/request processing

a) The Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs shall submit a notification of issue of visa the Department of Immigration and Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad to foreigners specified in clauses 1 and 2, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit within 01 working day from the date of receipt of the valid application.

b) The Consular Department shall submit a written request to the Department of Immigration or Directorate of State Protocol and relevant agencies within 01 working day from the date of receipt of the valid application of those specified in clause 3, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and exit. After receipt of the response in writing of the Directorate of State Protocol and relevant agencies, and in case no response is made by the  Department of Immigration, the  Consular Department shall send a notification to the applicant and Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad.

c) The Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs shall notify the Department of Immigration and Ministry of Public Security of issue of visa to foreigners specified in clauses 4 and 2, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit in writing within 01 working day from the date of receipt of the valid application.

d) The Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs shall respond to the applicant and Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad within 02 working days from the date of receipt of the notification if the Department of Immigration makes no response.

dd) The Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs shall send a written notification which specifies full name, date of birth, nationality, gender, passport number and symbol, date of issue and expiry date of passport, occupation and position, purpose of entry and type of the visa and issuer and other necessary information to the Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad.

4. Issue of visas

a) Every Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad shall issue visas to foreigners within 01 working day from the date of receipt of the notification stipulated in point d, clause 3 of this Article, and passport and visa application (using the form NA1 issued together with the Circular No.04/2015/TT-BCA)

b) In case the issue of visas to foreigners is approved at checkpoints, the application-receiving body stipulated in clause 1 of this article shall notify applicants of issue of visas at checkpoints.

5. The Minister of Foreign Affairs may either decide or authorize the Director of the Consular Department to consider easing the procedure for issue of visas in accordance with the Law on Entry and Exit.

Article 5. Procedures for extension of temporary residence permits

1. foreigners who are granted visas with symbol NG1, NG2 or NG4 wishing to have their residenceduration extended shall request their guaranteeing entity to submit an application for extension to the Consular Department  or  the Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh City.

2. An application for extension includes:

a) A diplomatic note or written request for extension of temporary residence permit which specifies full name, date of birth, nationality, gender, passport number and symbol, date of issue and expiry date of passport, occupation and position, purpose of entry and extended duration and request for a new visa (if any).

b) A foreigner’s passport that is valid for more than 30 days from the date of application of extension

c) An application form for visa and extension of temporary residence permit (using form NA5 issued together with the Circular No. 04/2015/TT-BCA) countersigned and sealed by the guaranteeing entity.

d) 01 photo of ID of members of the  diplomatic mission of the foreigner’s country in Vietnam issued by the Directorate of State Protocol or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh in case the foreigner comes to Vietnam for visiting members of  diplomatic missions of his/her country in Vietnam.

e) 01 copy of the valid employment contract if the foreigner is a contractual staff working for the diplomatic mission of his/her country in Vietnam.

3.  Grant of extension of temporary residence permits

a)Within 05 working days from the date of receipt of the valid application as stipulated in clause 2 of this Article, the Consular Department or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh City shall consider granting an extension of temporary residence permit and a new visa (where necessary) to the foreigner.

b) The extended duration of temporary residence and duration of new visa (if any) shall be conformable to the entry purposes and guaranteeing entity’s request, and shall not exceed 12 months. The expiry date of extended duration of temporary residence shall be at least 30 days ahead of that of the foreigner’s passport.

c) For foreigners mentioned in point d, clause 2 of this Article, the extended duration of temporary residence and new visa (if any) shall be conformable to point b, clause 3 of this Article and the expiry date of ID of members of their foreign diplomatic mission in Vietnam issued by the Directorate of State Protocol or Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh City.

4. foreigners who came to Vietnam under the visa-free entry policy as prescribed in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit shall be entitled to be granted at least once extension with each extension of not exceeding the last residence duration according to their application stipulated in clause 2 of this Article, unless otherwise stipulated in international agreements to which Vietnam is a signatory.

5. The Director of the Consular Department shall have the power to grant extension and new visa (where necessary) to those who are prescribed in clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4 of the Law on Entry and Exit and came to Vietnam with SQ visa.

6. The Minister of Foreign Affairs may either decide or authorize the Director of the Directorate of State Protocol to decide to ease the procedure for extension of temporary residence permit in accordance with the Law on Entry and Exit.

Article 6. Procedures for application for temporary residence cards

1. The entity guaranteeing for foreigners prescribed in clause 3, Article 8 of the Law on Entry and Exit shall submit an application  for temporary residence card to the competent authority stipulated in Article 3 hereof.

2. An application for the temporary residence card includes:

a) A diplomatic note of temporary residence card request to the Vietnam’s diplomatic mission which specifies full name, date of birth, nationality, passport number and symbol, occupation and position of the foreigner (refer to form NA6 issued together with the Circular No.04/2015/TT-BCA);

In case of replacement of officials of diplomatic missions of foreign countries in Vietnam, the diplomatic note shall specify full name and position of the new officials in charge.

b) An application form for temporary residence card (using form NA8 issued together with the Circular No.04/2015/TT-BCA) countersigned by the competent authority and sealed by the Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad;

c) A valid passport of the foreigner;

d) In case the foreigner is on the payroll increase of the  diplomatic mission  of his/her country in Vietnam, the diplomatic note of payroll increase of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of his/her home country  is required, besides documents specified in points a, b, and c, clause 1 of this Article.

3. Issue of temporary residence cards:

Within 05 working days from the date of receipt of the valid application as stipulated in clause 2 of this Article, the Directorate of State Protocol and Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh City shall consider granting the temporary residence card to the foreigner.

4. The NG3 temporary residence card shall be valid for 05 years and expire at least 30 days prior to the expiry date of the foreigner’s passport.

Foreigners with expired temporary residence cards shall be entitled to be granted new temporary residence card at request the diplomatic mission of his/her country in Vietnam.

5. The Directorate of State Protocol and Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh City shall submit the list of foreigners eligible for being granted temporary residence cards to the Department of Immigration of Vietnam under clause 2, Article 7 of the Government’s Decree No.64/2015/ND-CPon the cooperation among Ministries, Ministerial-level agencies, People’s Committees of provinces in management of entry, exit, transit and residence by foreigners in Vietnam.

6. The Minister of Foreign Affairs may either decide or authorize the Director of the Directorate of State Protocol to consider easing the procedure for temporary residence card in accordance with the Law on Entry and Exit.

Chapter III

IMPLEMENTATION

Article 7. Transitional provisions

1. Unexpired visas, certificates of temporary residence or temporary residence cards issued by the effective date of this Circular shall be valid until their expiry date.

2. Applications for visas/temporary residence cards or extension of temporary residence permits which are submitted by the effective date of this Circular but have not been processed yet shall be processed in accordance with provisions hereof.

Article 8. Implementation organizations

1. Every Consular Department shall:

a) Direct Vietnam’s diplomatic missions abroad and other relevant agencies to issue visas and grant extension of temporary residence permits in accordance with provision hereof.

b) Annually submit a status report on issue of visas and extension of temporary residence permits to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

2. The Directorate of State Protocol shall:

a) Provide with Vietnam’s diplomatic missions abroad and other relevant agencies instructions on procedures for issue of temporary residence cards in accordance with provision hereof

b) Annually submit status report on issue of temporary residence cards to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

3. The Department of Foreign Affairs of Ho Chi Minh City shall  submit reports on issue of visas and extension of temporary residence permits to the Consular Department and reports on issue of temporary residence cards to the Directorate of State Protocol monthly, quarterly and annually.

4. Every Vietnam’s diplomatic mission abroad shall:

a) Issue visas at request of the Consular Departments or Department of Foreign Affairs of o Chi Minh City.

b)  Submit reports on issue of visas to foreigners under the jurisdiction of the Minister of Foreign Affairs to the Consular Department monthly, quarterly and yearly.

Article 9. Entry into force

This Circular enters into force from September 01, 2016.

Article 10. Implementation

Heads of the Consular Department and Directorate of State Protocol and Department of Foreign Affairs in Ho Chi Minh City and heads of Vietnam’s diplomatic missions abroad  and affiliates of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall be responsible for the implementation of this Circular. Any issue arising in connection to the implementation of this Circular should be promptly reported to the Consular Department (with respect of issue of visas and extension of temporary residence permits) and the Directorate of State Protocol (with respect of issue of temporary residence cards). /.

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Summary
How To Enter Vietnam Legally with Visas and Temporary Residence Card
Article Name
How To Enter Vietnam Legally with Visas and Temporary Residence Card
Description
As Vietnam has become more attractive for economic investment and tourism destinations, more and more have been seeking to enter Vietnam for work purpose, and leisure purpose.  It is important that travelers have suitable visas and entrance cards, and follow the laws.  Failing to follow the law on immigration would result in blacklist, deportation creating unnecessary hassles, especially for business men seeking investment in Vietnam.

Contact us to schedule your consultation.

A

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