Essential Employment Paperwork in Croatia


Croatia is a country that’s rapidly gaining fame among expats not just because of its natural beauty but also due to the increasing number of job opportunities. Expats who have decided to get a job in this country ensure that they are armed with all the employment related paperwork.

Citizens of the European Union member states are not required to secure a visa and work permit for Croatia. They only need a work registration certificate that will enable them to work for up to 90 days annually. Expats from outside the EU are obliged to get a work permit and either of the two types of visas that’ll allow them to engage in gainful employment or business in Croatia.

Business Visa

A business visa is granted to foreign nationals who will work under an existing agreement for business, long-term production cooperation or technical cooperation. It is also the type of visa for those who want to establish a business or fulfil the duty of a director of an existing business in Croatia.

In addition to this visa, expats who also need to obtain a business permit by appearing personally at the local headquarters of the Croatian Ministry of Interior and must be made on the same day as registering the applicant’s residence address in Croatia. A business permit is usually valid for one year and acts as both work and residence permit of the holder.

Employment Visa

An employment visa is a top requirement for expats who wants to work in Croatia. It can be obtained at the Croatian Embassy/Consulate in the applicant’s home country whereas the processing time normally takes four to six weeks. Foreign assignees who will apply for the employment visa should present the documents stated below:

  • Valid Passport
  • Two Passport-sized photos
  • Notarised copy of the ID page of the passport
  • An assignment letter or draft of the employment contract (translated in Croatian)
  • A brief letter from the employer stating the applicant’s qualification for the job post
  • A statement justifying why a foreign national was hired instead of a Croatian citizen

Expats who have the employment visa should register at the Ministry of Internal Affairs within 24 hours of their arrival to apply for the white card or extended residency permit.

Radna Dozvola or Work Permit

Expats sent to Croatia by their employers would need a work permit. It should be requested by the hiring company and should be based on either a business or employment visa. The work permit must be processed prior to the employee's entry to Croatia and forwarded to the Croatian Employment Institute. It takes about one to two weeks for the work permit to be granted whereas the typical validity period is one year. It is the duty of the employer to apply for an extension at least 45 days prior to the permit’s expiration date. The required documents for work permit application are:

  • Copy of the expatriate’s passport and visa stamped by a notary
  • Copy of the White Card or extended residency permit
  • Proof of the expatriate’s professional qualification
  • Company Registration Certificate or Employment Contract
  • A letter of request from the employer detailing the level of job and reason why no suitable Croatian national was hired

Additional Employment Paperwork

Another piece of paperwork one has to obtain to finally be able to begin working in Croatia is the 'workbook'. One would then have to secure this from his employer to be endorsed by the City Economic Department. The entire process to acquire a workbook takes about 14 weeks, excluding possible denials and appeals.

Foreign assignees should also get an Osobni identifikacijski broj (OIB) or Personal Identification Number. It is required to all expats who will work in Croatia for more than 90 days and can be used for purposes such as applying for residency or opening a local bank account. OIB applicants should go to the office of the Ministarstvo Financija (Ministry of Finance) to fill out an application form and present their passport.