A highly qualified specialist is a foreign citizen with certain skills, achievements, and work experience in a specific area and receives a salary not lower than a certain threshold. The employer or the customer assesses such a specialist’s competence and real qualification level. One can study the employee documents and information, reviews, and recommendations from his previous customers or employers, characteristics drawn up by recruiting agencies. When signing a contract with a highly qualified specialist from abroad, an appropriate salary should be set. An HQS must receive 167,000 rubles a month and above.

Benefits of HQS status

High qualifications endow some benefits for both the foreigner and his family members. The above citizens can not register at the place of stay within 90 days.

Russian work permit for highly qualified professionals is granted within fourteen working days.

A multiple-entry work visa is issued for the period of validity of the permit for up to three years. After that, they can be repeatedly extended without the need to travel outside the Russian Federation. In case of early termination of the employment contract, the documents giving the right to stay on Russia’s territory are valid for up to thirty days.

It is also possible for a highly qualified specialist to obtain a residence permit in a simplified manner for the validity of an HQS work permit Russia.

A residence permit for a foreign citizen is a specific document issued for the entire duration of a work permit. When extending an employment contract, the residence permit issued to a highly qualified specialist is extended for the employment contract’s entire duration.

HQS visa requirements

To attract the HQS, the company, upon initial application for an invitation, is registered with the migration authority as an employer. It takes 15 working days to issue an invitation and a work permit for an HQS from submitting the application and related documents. A foreign citizen’s passport is required while simultaneously submitting documents for invitations for a highly qualified specialist and his family if needed. Otherwise, an application for an invitation for accompanying persons can be submitted only after the employee has received a work permit.

After receiving an invitation to enter, the employee gets a highly qualified specialist visa Russia for the duration of the employment contract, but not more than three years. A work permit for a highly skilled specialist is issued for the same period. Also, a highly qualified specialist and his family members can be given a residence permit for the contract’s duration.

Highly Qualified Specialist visa application process

Stages of HQS registration in the company staff:

  1. The employer is obliged to make a registration card in the Ministry of Internal Affairs. After submitting documents to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the inspector investigates to ensure that the company actually works at the specified address.
  2. After that, the following are drawn up:
  • work permit for a foreign employee (valid for 3 years),
  • documents for a work invitation,
  • labor contract,
  • notification of the conclusion of an employment contract.
  1. A work invitation is sent to a foreigner so that he can obtain a multiple-entry work visa and use it to come to Russia (only for a Highly skilled migrant visa).
  2. A foreign employee must take a work permit in the Ministry of Internal Affairs immediately upon arrival in Russia.
  3. Based on a work permit, the employer puts the foreigner on the migration register.

Required Documents for Russia Highly Skilled Specialist Visa

To register an HQS, the employer will have to prepare an extensive package of documents for submission to the Federal Migration Agency:

  • Application;
  • Photos of the foreigner;
  • Certified copies of the company registration documents;
  • Copy of the original contract;
  • Letter of guarantee;
  • receipt for payment of the state duty for hiring a foreign specialist;
  • A copy of a foreign specialist’s ID.

All the Russian work visa documents must meet modern legal requirements, be up-to-date, and comply with official state standards.


Visas for accompanying family members of HQS

High-class specialists from abroad are entitled to live at their place of work with their families. Family members of an employee can apply for a residence permit, get a job without a quota, get an education, choose a job permitted in the Russian Federation. A foreign worker can take only his family members with him. In this case, the relatives of the main applicant are also issued work visas. They are provided with the indication “Accompanying a foreign specialist”.

Covid-19 entry exemption for HQS

Now the restriction on entry into the Russian Federation due to the pandemic does not apply to highly qualified specialists, to those who participate in the adjustment and maintenance of foreign equipment. In case of successful completion of the relevant agreement in the authorized ministry and after the proper receipt of Russia Highly Skilled Specialist Visa, highly qualified specialists have the right to arrive in Russia from their country by direct flights. Simultaneously, it is not recommended to use flight options with a transfer in other countries.

Before entering, you must go through the PCR test for COVID-19 and get a negative results certificate. The certificate must be issued no earlier than 72 hours before passing the Russian border control in English or Russian.

When passing the border control at the destination, the foreigners are ordered to self-isolate for 14 days. This requirement must be strictly observed even if the test results for COVID are negative.


The concept of a highly qualified specialist is very multifaceted. One of the components of the definition of a highly skilled specialist is his work experience. Various papers must also confirm high qualifications: scientific discoveries, patents, certificates, and diplomas.

Foreign highly qualified specialists work in the Russian Federation in various industries. These are employees with solid knowledge, innovative ideas, and scientific developments, rich practical experience, and good working skills. Their cooperation with Russian employers yields tangible results in developing industrial, scientific, educational, and other spheres.