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Work Permits Overview

There have been many recent changes to the Isle of Man work permit scheme, and it's now simpler than ever to acquire a permit and start working in the Island!
So you've decided to make the Isle of Man your new home and you've been offered the job of a lifetime on this beautiful Island, what do you do next?

If you are not classed as an 'Isle of Man Worker', you will need a Work Permit in order to work. Your employer will apply for you and recent changes mean that it is a very quick and simple process for your employer to follow, especially as they can now apply online.

Improvements to work permits as of January 2018:

✓ Simplified employer only application form

✓ Simplified list of matters to be taken into consideration by the Department

✓ Simplified fees to encourage multi-year permits (a flat fee of £60 regardless of the length of permit)

✓ Automatic 1 year permit for cohabiting partners of Isle of Man workers upon application

✓ Automatic 1 year permit for cohabiting partners of work permit holders and exempt persons upon application

✓ Introduction of a register of exempt persons

✓ Remove the requirement for visa holders with permission to enter the Island under Tiers 1, 4 and 5 of the Points Based System to obtain an additional work permit

Who needs a work permit?

If you are not classed as an Isle of Man worker, you may require a Work Permit. A work permit is an official document giving someone permission to take up employment, and in the Isle of Man, they are intended to be used to find skilled workers, grow local businesses and protect employment opportunities.

However, not everyone needs to hold a Work Permit, as they may fall into one of a number of occupations and employments which are exempt from this requirement. These include - but are not limited to - certain employments in ICT and e-business, Police roles, Judicial employments, medical practitioners, registered dentists, social workers, nurses, midwives and secondary school teachers. For the full list of exempt employments, please visit this website.

  • Employment in Information and Communication Technologies (ICT)
  • Employment in E-Business
  • Registered medical practitioners
  • Registered dentists
  • Secondary school teachers
  • Registered nurses or midwives
  • Registered social workers
  • Senior public service appointments
  • Chief Officers of an international group
  • Holders of an immigration employment document
  • Some temporary employments


Who applies for my Work Permit, and how is it progressed?

If you are offered a role with an Isle of Man company, your employer will apply on your behalf. All applications are processed digitally via the online portal, making it a straightforward and easy process. If granted, the permit allows you to be employed by the specified employer for the specified role - any future roles or changes to your employment will mean a new permit application. Click here if you are an employer who needs to apply for a Work Permit.

Work permits can be applied for up to 5 years, and cost £60.

Self-employed individuals will need to apply themselves via the online portal - the portal will ask for information on you profession, personal details and a business plan. Click here to apply for a self-employment work permit.

Partners of Isle of Man workers, Work Permit holders and Exempt workers.

Partners- whether civil, spouse or co-habiting - of Isle of Man workers, exempt workers and work permit holders are eligible for an automatic 1-year work permit, even if they have not yet secured employment themselves.

You can apply for this yourself online and must provide your partner’s Work Permit reference, personal details, employment details (if applicable), and proof of relationship to the IOM Worker. The cost for this permit is £60 and is annually renewable.

Click here to apply for an automatic work permit.


This is only a small selection of exemptions, so make sure you check out the full list and don't forget you can get in touch with the Locate team to find out if you could be exempt from applying for a work permit.


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