How can non-EU nationals start a business in Slovenia?
The first step is obtaining a visa, the next step is obtaining a business registration, and the third step is obtaining a work permit.
1. Procedure of a visa obtaining
In addition to a valid travel document, third-country nationals must hold a visa in order to enter the Republic of Slovenia.
At the beginning, a multiple-entry visa is suggested. After starting your business in Slovenia, you can apply for a residence permit.
- Obtain a letter of guarantee for business visits
- Submit the application personally at the diplomatic mission or consular post.
2. Procedure of business registration
In Slovenia there are several forms of business, the most common of which is a limited liability company (LLC) or d.o.o and a sole trader (s.p.).
In the case of a simple d.o.o. (LLC) (one shareholder) or in the case of a sole trader (s.p.), you may begin the establishment procedure via e-VEM; however, a digital certificate is required; or at one of the VEM points and at a notary.
The establishment procedure at the VEM point and via e-VEM is free of charge. The company will be registered in approximately a week.
Costs of procedure: EUR 0.00 at a VEM point; ca. EUR 300-500 at a notary
3. Procedures for obtaining a work permit
All foreigners from non-EU countries need to get a work permit to work in Slovenia.
Foreigners can acquire work and residence permits by incorporating a company in Slovenia or by finding an employer who will employ them. How to employ a non EU foreigner?
Types of work permit:
• Employment permit
• Personal work permit
• Permit for work
Foreigners who plan to set up their own company and manage it or find employment with it have various possibilities for obtaining a work permit according to the Employment and Work of Aliens Act (hereinafter referred to as the ZZDT-1 Act, Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia, no. 26/2011).
Note: If a foreign is a founder (owner) of a company, but he/she is not its representative a work permit for him/her is not necessary.
1. Work permit for foreign representatives
If a foreign establishes or co-establishes a private commercial company that he/she plans to manage or lead as a company representative (director, procurator, etc.), he/she needs to obtain a work permit for a foreign representative. Companies that employ ten or fewer workers may obtain no more than one work permit for a foreign representative.
The work permit for a foreign representative can be issued for a period of up to two years and can be extended under the same conditions.
Procedures for acquiring the work permit The application for a work permit for a foreign representative should be submitted to the Employment Service of Slovenia on the prescribed ZRSZ-TUJ-3 form, together with all the required supporting documents.
If the company has not yet been registered for six months, it can obtain a work permit for a foreign representative, if it provides proof of investment in Slovenia in the amount of at least EUR 30,000 for company start-up.
With regard to proof being checked in the process of issuing a valid work permit, the information on company registration is essential as this indicates whether the alien is entered as the company's representative.
2. Employment permit for majority owners
If a foreigner establishes or co-establishes d.o.o or LLC in which he/she as the investor holds the majority share (at least 51%), he/she can be employed in such a company on the basis of an employment permit without labour market control.
The procedure for issuing the employment permit for a majority owner is easier, as the permit is issued without verifying the existence of appropriate national candidates.
On the basis of such a permit, the foreigner can perform the activities for which the company has been registered in accordance with job vacancies and the employment contract concluded between the foreigner and the company.
Procedures for acquiring the employment permit The application for an employment permit for a majority owner should be submitted to the Employment Service of Slovenia on the prescribed ZRSZ-TUJ-2 form, together with all the required supporting documents.
In the procedure for issuing the employment permit, information on company registration is verified, as this information indicates that the foreign is a majority (at least 51%) owner of the company and, if he/she is a representative, that he/she is not the only representative.
3. A personal work permits for the self-employment of a foreigner
If a foreigner wishes to establish or coestablish a private commercial company (k.d., d.n.o.) or register as a sole proprietor s.p.), he/she can apply for a personal work permit for self-employment. The permit is issued for one year and can be renewed. The foreigner needs to obtain the personal work permit for self-employment before registering the private commercial company or as a sole proprietor. The foreigner must meet the following conditions:
- the foreigner holds a valid residence permit and, upon submission of the application, the foreigner has uninterruptedly resided in the Republic of Slovenia for a minimum of one year on the basis of a valid residence permit (the condition of a one-year uninterrupted residence is not fulfi lled if the permit for residence has been issued for seasonal labour, for the provision of cross-border services by seconded workers or appointed workers or for training and advanced training)
- the foreigner submits evidence of his/ her own fi nancial resources in the amount of EUR 10,000
- the foreigner meets the conditions regarding the ownership or rent of business premises for the activity, which is proven by submitting evidence of the ownership of premises or an appropriate rental contract for the premises where he/she has a registered office.
A personal work permit for selfemployment can also be acquired by foreigners who are entered into an appropriate and legally determined record (e.g. athletes, artists, etc.). The personal work permit for self-employment can be recovered under the same conditions.
Procedures for acquiring the work permit: The application for a personal work permit should be submitted to the Employment Service of Slovenia on the prescribed ZRSZ-TUJ-1 form together with all the required supporting documents. The issued personal work permit is the basis for the registration of a private commercial company or for registration as a sole proprietor.
Time: 30 to 60 days, Costs: ca. EUR 90.00