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Expatriate Employee Transfer

Through this service, foreign employees can transfer to another employer without the need to cancel his/ her existing work permit and without the need to travel out of the kingdom of Bahrain. The transfer can be done with or without the consent of the current employer.

Process Description

In case the transfer is based on the former employer’s approval, the new employer needs to do the following:

  1. Login to the LMRA’s EMS system to complete the electronic transfer application form. The entered information should be matching to the information in the passport and other related documents. The employee will be transferred after the payment of the fees.

In case the transfer will be done without the former employer’s approval, the following steps will be taken:

  1. The employee should notify the current employer of his intention to leave by a registered post letter during the specified notice period of the employment contract termination, in accordance with the provisions of the labour law. The notice should not exceed three months from the date set for the transfer application.
  2. The second (new) employer will submit a transfer request/ application to LMRA prior to the date set for the transfer by one month, providing all the required documents.
  3. Upon transfer, the first (old) employer will be compensated with the fees of the remaining period of the work permit validity.

In case of transfer at the end of the work permits’ validity or the cancellation of the employee’s work permit, the employee should do the following:

  1. Notify LMRA about the transfer by visiting the customer service department before thirty days of the expiration date of your work permit or after the expiration or cancellation of the work permit within a period not exceeding five working days from the date of the cancellation. You should be given thirty days (calendar days) to enable you to make the transfer to another employer, during which you are prohibited from engaging in any work. Your first employer will not be allowed to renew your work permit. The (new) employer will then submit a new work permit application for you.
Required document Special Considerations
Employee Transfer with the Current Employer Consent
Employee passport Copy
  • The passport must be valid for at least 6 months or two years, preferably
  • It should include all the pages containing the personal information, and, for Indians and Pakistanis, the page that has the names of the father/ mother or husband/ wife
Employee ID card Copy
Job offer letter or contract between the new employer and the employee (one or two pages Max.) on the company’s letterhead or a government official paper Copy
  • The letter or the contract must include the name of the employer and the employee, passport number, nationality, job role (occupation) of the employee, salary, employment and notice periods.
  • It should be signed by the employer and the employee and bear the seal/ stamp of the employer. It should state that the offer is subject to successful application of the work permit
Dependents’ passports and visa, if applicable Copy
Approval letter/ no-objection certificate from the relevant authority for certain specialised occupations (approval from the Ministry of Works - Committee for the organisation of engineering practices for Engineers and engineering jobs; approval from Central Bank of Bahrain – CBB for banking and insurance companies’ managers; approval from the Ministry of Justice and Endowments “Awqaf” for mosques and “Ma’atams / Husainneyas”; approval from the Ministry of Health for medical professionals; approval from the Ministry of Education for education related occupations in the private sector The approval must be as recent as possible and should not be older than 6 months
In case of employment transfer without the current employer consent, please submit the below documents in addition to the above mentioned documents
Resignation and notice letter (as per the labour law and/or the employment agreement between the employee and the employer) addressed to the current employer by the employee who wants to transfer Copy
  • The notice letter must be sent to the employer’s physical address registered in the CR (as per the Ministry of Industry and Commerce). More details can be found on MOIC’s site http://www.moic.gov.bh
  • The letter must be sent to the employer within the specified period of notice for the termination of the employment contract in accordance with the provisions of the labour law for the private sector (not exceeding three months) from the date specified for the transfer
  • The notice period can vary from the minimum of 30 days to the maximum of 90 days
  • In case the notice period is less than 90 days, you need to upload the notice page of the employment agreement between the employee and the old employer
Post office “registered mail” notification card (pink card) or slip for the resignation or notice letter sent by the employee to his/her current employer Copy

Special Conditions

In all transfer cases, except in case of transfer at the end of the work permits’ validity or the cancellation of the employee’s work permit:

Service Access

Service Counter Client Services Counter at LMRA’s Headquarters, first floor
EMS system https://www.lmra.gov.bh/EMS_Web/
e-Support https://services.lmra.bh/e-support/
Contact Centre +973 1 750 6055

Working Hours

Service Counter Hours: 7:30 AM – 7:00 PM

Phone Service Hours: 7:30 AM – 3:00 PM

Last Update: Sunday 5 March 2017