Effective policies relating to foreign elements in 2016 (Part 1)

A string of new policies on civil status registration, employment, escorted transfer of violators, and individual income exemption involving foreign elements came into effect in 2016.

Civil status registration

The Law No. 60/2014/Q3, dated November 20, 2014, on civil status came into force since January 1, 2016.

Under the Law, the district-level People's Committees will be responsible for registering civil status events involving foreign elements. This decentralization aims to bring into full play the capacity of local authorities and strengthen the state management role of the provincial-level People's Committees toward achieving the long-term objective of absolute delegation of the power to register civil status to local authorities.

Under the law, civil status events involving foreign elements include birth registration for children, marriage registration, guardianship registration, registration of parent and child recognition, and death registration.

* Birth registration for children born in Viet Nam and having a parent being a Vietnamese citizen and the other being a foreigner or a stateless person, a parent being a Vietnamese citizen residing in the country and the other being a Vietnamese citizen residing abroad, both parents being Vietnamese citizens residing abroad, or both parents being foreigners or stateless persons; birth registration for children born abroad with their birth not yet registered abroad and taken to reside in Viet Nam and having both parents being Vietnamese citizens or a parent being a Vietnamese citizen.

* Marriage registration between Vietnamese citizens and foreigners; between Vietnamese citizens residing in the country and Vietnamese citizens residing abroad; between Vietnamese citizens residing abroad; between Vietnamese citizens who also have foreign citizenship and Vietnamese citizens or foreigners; and between foreigners residing in Viet Nam.

* Guardianship registration between Vietnamese citizens and foreigners together residing in Viet Nam.

* Registration of parent and child recognition between Vietnamese citizens and foreigners; between Vietnamese citizens residing in the country and Vietnamese citizens residing abroad; between Vietnamese citizens residing abroad; between Vietnamese citizens also having a foreign citizenship and Vietnamese citizens or foreigners; and between foreigners either or both of whom permanently residing in Viet Nam.

New regulations on overseas workers

Decree 11/2016/ND-CP (Decree 11), dated February 3, 2016 on providing detailed guidance on the Labor Code 2012 focusing on management of expatriates working in Viet Nam came into force on April 1, 2016.

Decree 11 altered conditions for foreign experts to work in Viet Nam with working experience of at least three years in their fields (instead five years as earlier requirement).

The decree supplemented regulations on work permit exemption for foreign employees who stay in Viet Nam for working as a manager, an executive director, an expert or a technician for a period of less than 30 days; are studying at foreign schools/ institutions entering Viet Nam pursuant to an internship contract signed with agencies, organizations or enterprises in Viet Nam; family members of staff of foreign diplomatic missions; foreigners holding diplomatic passports entering Viet Nam to work for State agencies, political organizations, or socio-political organizations.

Two foreign subjects exempted from personal income tax

Since May 1, 2016, foreign experts in non-governmental aid programs and projects and Vietnamese working at representative offices of the United Nations system in Viet Nam have enjoyed personal income tax (PIT) exemption.

Under Decision No. 06/2016/QD-TTg (Decision 06), foreign experts shall be exempted from PIT on the direct income from the implementation of the activities of the foreign non-governmental aid programs and projects. The conditions for PIT exemption includes (i) a foreign nationality; (ii) entering into the contract with any agency, organization as the project owner or the foreign non-governmental aid owner that directly implements the aid project activities by the competent authority and the assignment terms for foreign experts accompanying the contract.

Decision 07/2016/QD-TTg (Decision 07) stipulates any Vietnamese working or employed under any labor contract to work at the representative office of the international organization of the UN in Viet Nam shall be exempted from PIT on any salary, wages paid in such office. The conditions for PIT exemption includes (i) the nationality of Viet Nam; (ii) an employee as confirmed by the authorized attorney of the representative office of the UN organizations in Viet Nam.

Fresh regulations on temporary custody and escorted

Decree No.17/2016/ND-CP, dated March 17, 2016, amends a number of articles of the Government's Decree No. 112/2013/ND-CP issued on October 2, 2013, providing the sanction of expulsion and the measures of temporary custody and escorted transfer of violators according to administrative procedures, and management of foreigners violating Viet Nam's law pending the completion of expulsion procedures.

The decree took effect since May 2, 2016, supplement to Clause 1 Article 3, Article 11 and Article 12 of Decree No. 112/2013/ND-CP in order to add more entities that are applied the form of temporary custody of persons according to administrative procedures.

Accordingly, if foreigners that have the act of smuggling, illegal transport of goods through border gates, abscond, destroy violated material evidences, means, they shall be remanded in custody./.

Source: ONLINE NEWSPAPER OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIET NAM