Proposed the Russian Ministry of Labor the bill on migrant workers has been endorsed by the government’s legislative commission. The bill calls for amendments to the Labor Code with a view to streamline the work of foreign migrants and people without citizenship on the territory of Russia.

The proposed amendment – Article 351 – envisages signing both an indefinite-term and a fixed-term employment contract with migrant workers.

In accordance with the Law on Migrant Workers the newly proposed amendments to the Labor Code provide for:

  • The need to provide the employment contracts with migrant workers (depending on the administrative and legal status of the individuals in question) with extra information on their work permits, patents, temporary residence permits or residency (hereafter – authorization documents);
  • The need for migrant workers to produce authorization documents before signing a work contract;
  • The need for the employer to suspend the employment contract of a foreign worker if the permit for the use of foreign labor or authorization documents have been suspended or have expired;
  • The need to terminate an employment contract if the permit for the use of foreign workforce has been cancelled, suspended, or has expired, or if authorization documents have been cancelled or have expired and the new ones have not been received within one month of expiry.

As for medical assistance for migrant workers temporarily residing on the territory of the Russian Federation, the new article of the Labor Code envisages:

  • The need to include medical insurance policy details, or details of the contract with a medical company on providing a migrant worker with medical services on a commercial basis, in the employment contract;
  • The need for migrant workers to produce the medical insurance policy before signing an employment contract (except for cases when the above-mentioned policy is provided by the employer, or the employer has signed an agreement with a medical company on providing a foreign worker with medical services on a commercial basis);
  • The need for the employer to suspend the worker’s employment contract if his medical insurance policy, or agreement with a medical company, has expired; the need to terminate the employment contract in case the new documents have not arrived within one month of the expiry of the previously signed papers.

The new article stipulates a temporary transfer of a migrant worker:

  • A temporary transfer is allowed for a period of up to one month once a year in case of an emergency (for example, a natural or man-inflicted disaster, an accident at work) without taking into account the type of work provided by the work permit;
  • The employment contract is to be terminated in case the employer cannot provide the worker with the same kind of work after the end of the temporary transfer, and in case a temporary transfer is impossible because the worker has already been transferred to temporary assignment within the current working year.

In addition, the bill envisages a number of specifications:

  • Article 83 specifies the conditions under which the employment contract is subject to termination regardless of the will of the parties concerned; the employment contract ought to be terminated if the total number of migrant workers should be brought in conformity with the restrictions set by the Government of the Russian Federation on the basis of the Law on Migrant Workers;
  • Article 65 stipulates that the requirement to produce a pension insurance certificate before taking on employment doesn’t spread to foreign nationals who are living in Russia on a temporary basis and who are signing an employment contract for less than six months; the requirement to produce military registration documents doesn’t spread to foreign workers who have temporary or permanent residency.

Adoption of the new legislation will make it possible:

  • To streamline labor relations that emerge in connection with foreign workers working on the territory of the Russian Federation, and also with due regard for legal practices (as regards the conclusion and termination of employment contracts with the above-mentioned individuals, a temporary transfer of foreign workers);
  • To guarantee medical assistance to about 3 million foreign workers temporarily living on the territory of Russia (according to the Russian Ministry of Labor).

The bill was approved by a three-party commission on social and labor relations.