ISRAEL – Renewal of 30 Day Short Employment Authorisation (SEA) Programme
The work permit unit and the Ministry of Interior (MOI) in Israel have announced the renewal of the 30 day Short Employment Authorisation (SEA) programme, effective 26 January 2015.
This category was a pilot programme in 2014 and was briefly suspended from 23 December last year due to the lack of formal regulations. However, temporary trial period regulations for the programme valid to mid-2015 have now been published and applications may once again be filed.
What is the SEA?
The programme enables urgent travel and short, planned assignments to Israel for up to 30 days total in a year through an expedited application process.
Instead of the standard B1 work visa process of a work permit application, followed by a work visa application prior to entry, successful applicants for an SEA permit will obtain an expedited work permit approval allowing them to enter Israel and work immediately, with no further applications. Note that a separate application must be submitted prior to each entry.
The SEA permit applies only to visa waiver nationals. Individuals who are required to obtain visitor visas at the Israeli consulate prior to entry (including Indian, Chinese and Turkish nationals), cannot apply for work authorisation under the SEA programme.
The application for the SEA work permit must be supported by personal and corporate documentation, including travel information, a company affidavit and power of attorney, authenticated in certain circumstances, as required by the work permit unit and the MOI. Government processing fees vary, according to the length of the assignment.
The processing time for SEA applications is a few working days from submission, approximately 8 weeks faster than a standard consular B1 visa. Once in Israel SEA holders can start work immediately, but within two working days of entry they should apply for a B1 work visa at the MOI, which should be issued within two working days. Multiple entry permits are an available option within the permitted period.
- Consider the SEA work authorisation route for urgent, limited work trips to Israel of up to 30 days in a year.