1. Citizens of the European Union are free to enter Cyprus and look for employment for up to 4 months. During this period it is necessary to make an appointment to register with the Aliens & Migration Department in your area. A quick visit there will set you up with an appointment to register at a future date. They will also provide you with a handout specifying which documents you need to take with you the day of registration.
  2. Once employment is secured and you start working, your employer is legally required to register you with the local social security office which will issue a number for you.
  3. Take your employment contract, along with the other necessary documents, to your registration appointment at the Aliens & Migration office.
  4. Provided all your paperwork is in order, your residence/work permit (yellow slip) will be handed to you the day of your appointment.
  5. If you are the non-EU spouse of an EU citizen you are granted the same rights of residence and employment as your husband/wife.


If you are planning on being self-employed you should first visit the Aliens & Migration office to arrange an appointment. They will hand you a list of the documents you will need to take with you during your registration appointment. You will also need to register yourself as self-employed with the local social security office and obtain from them a social security number. They will explain when your contributions are due and the penalties for late or non-payment.


For more in depth explanations of your rights and obligations under the Cyprus Social Security scheme please click the following link:



It is extremely difficult and a long, complicated procedure for a non-EU citizen to obtain an employment and residence permit in order to legally work in Cyprus, and there is no guarantee that in the end it will be granted.

If you want/need to work in Cyprus it is advisable to secure an employment/residence permit BEFORE relocating here – this is done through the person/company that wants to employ you.

If you are offered employment, your employer NOT you, is required to apply for all the necessary permits on your behalf BEFORE you start working. It is illegal to work without all the required permits and the penalties can be quite harsh for both employee and employer (prison sentences and fines).


A non-EU citizen may form a company, operate a company, be the sole director and shareholder of the company and the company can employ staff to work. However, as a non-EU citizen, you will still need to apply for a work/residence permit in order to secure the right to actively work in Cyprus yourself.



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