Russian work visa
The process of obtaining work visas in a country other than your own can be daunting and overwhelming.
Most reputable schools and kindergartens will be able to provide you with a "Teacher work visa". If your employer does not offer support in obtaining a visa or suggests coming to Russia on a business visa or any other type that is not specifically a teacher visa, you should really consider the risks involved with accepting the position. Certainly the last thing you would want to do is break any Russian immigration laws and risk being arrested and deported!
Teachers who choose to work independently as tutors, governors, or pick up part time work in different schools will need to arrange their own visa in Russia. Again, it is really important to be on the right type of visa. Luckily, there are reputable companies that can provide the same teacher visa for a reasonable fee which we will recommend below. In addition to the visa, a teacher can expect to be paying the necessary taxes, and receive support with registrations.
Registration is a migration registration of a foreigner at his/her residence address in accordance with the Russian legislation. If you are planning to stay at your place of residence for less than 7 working days, you are not obliged to register your visa, but the registration after this term requires paying a fine at the police station.
If you are staying at a hotel, the hotel administration will register your visa for the whole period of your stay there. If you are staying at a private accommodation, your visa can be registered only by the owner of this property (apartment/house).
The absence of the registration will not allow you to perform any legal actions and can be the reason for a penalty or arrest by police.
First step: Get a teacher work visa invitation
To obtain a teacher work visa, you need a work visa invitation. Contrary to a business visa invitation, which can be issued by various Russian companies, a teacher work invitation is issued by the Federal Migration Department (UFMS) only to registered companies with an education license.
The invitation (also called visa support) is a special document that invites you to Russia to teach and is sponsored by a licensed education company. The invitation is required by a Russian consulate to be able to process your visa. The process of obtaining the invitation takes 17 business days after all documents are submitted. It is usually possible to expedite this process (10 business days) for an additional charge.
Second step: Visa application and processing
Once you have your work visa application, you are ready to apply for the actual visa in a consulate or a visa processing center. Before you book your appointment you should make sure you have all the necessary documents such as the HIV test. Some consulates may request proof of medical insurance for the duration of your stay in Russia.
It is important to note that you must apply for the visa outside of Russia. Depending on your nationality, it may be possible to process the visa in a consulate outside of your home country. Usually this service also includes expedited processing of the visa, meaning you can have your passport with the visa back same day or next. Normal processing in your home country takes 7-20 days. Depending on the country where you apple, there may bean option to process your visa in just 1 day for an additional charge.
Third step: Extend the visa to 12 month
All work visas are initially issued as a single entry visa for 90 days. After the teacher arrives in Moscow, the sponsoring school or company submit all the necessary documentation for extending the visa to a 12 months, mulit entry visa. This process takes 14 business days and the cost is included in the work visa invitation service. When the new visa is ready the teacher can re-enter Russia as often as they want during the 12 month validity. The 12 month work visa can be extended every year for an additional charge without having to leave the country.