KENYA – Immigration Services To Foreigners In Kenya

THE LAW

Registration of foreigners in Kenya is provided for by the Kenya Citizenship and Immigration ACT 2011 and the Kenya Citizenship and Immigration regulations 2012, both as amended.

FOREIGNERS

Foreigners who wish to work, invest or otherwise reside in Kenya are required to obtain Residence or work permits or passes, by application to the Director of immigration made in the prescribed form.

The Director shall upon considering the application, issue a resident or work permit in any of the classes, upon payment of the prescribed fees.

Classes of residence or work permits and passes

The Kenyan citizenship and immigration Act of 2011 as revised in 2018, provides for several types of permits and passes.

  1. Class A – this permit is issued to persons who want to engage in prospecting and mining
  2. Class B – this permit is issued to persons who want to engage in agricultural and husbandry
  3. Class C – this permit is issued to persons who want to practice a prescribed profession
  4. Class D – this permit issued to persons who want to engage employment as expatriates
  5. Class F – this permit is issued to persons who want to engage in specific manufacturing in Kenya
  6. Class G – this permit is issued to persons who want to engage in specific trade, business or consultancy
  7. Class I – this permit is issued to undertake approved religious and charitable activities
  8. Class K – this is a permit issued to persons who want to reside in Kenya as ordinary residents
  9. Class M – this permit is issued to refugees
  10. Permanent residence- this permit is issued to persons who lost citizenship and spouses of Kenyans among others.
  11. Dependant pass
  12. Visitors pass
  13. Students pass
  14. Research & Interns Pass
  15. Transit pass
  16. Prohibited immigrant/inadmissible persons’ pass
  17. Special pass
  18. Re-entry Pass


REQUIREMENTS FOR APPLICATION

CLASSES AM

  1. Two recent passport size photos
  2. Copies of national passport
  3. Duly filled and signed application Form 25
  4. Covering letter from the employer/self/organization
  5. Current Immigration status if in the country
  • Class A:
  1. License to prospect for minerals to mine
  2. Proof of funds for investment (at least USD 100,000)
  3. Current license and copy of pin certificate (for renewals)
  4. Signed audited accounts for the last one year
  5. Current tax Compliance certificate
  6. Processing fees nonrefundable (Kshs. 10,000)

  • Class B:

  1. Proof of land ownership/leasehold
  2. Proof of capital availability (bank statement)
  3. Clearance/license from relevant bodies
  4. copy of PIN certificate
  5. current audited accounts
  6. tax compliance certificate from KRA
  7. Processing fees nonrefundable (Kshs. 10,000)
  • Class C:
  1. Proof of membership to prescribed profession
  2. Copies of certified academic and professional qualification
  3. copy of PIN certificate
  4. Processing fees nonrefundable (Kshs. 10,000)

  • Class D:

  1. Duly certified copies of academic and professional certificates
  2. Curriculum vitae
  3. Duly filled application form 27
  4. Processing fees nonrefundable (Ksh. 10,000)
  5. Name of Kenyan understudy
  6. Certified copies of academic certificates and full contact of understudy- address, email, cell phone number
  • Class F:
  1. Copy of license held
  2. Proof of funds for investment at least (minimum USD 100,000)
  3. Registration certificate of the company
  4. Memorandum of association
  5. Articles of association
  6. Signed audited accounts for the past two years
  7. Copy of PIN certificate
  8. Certificate of incorporation of the company
  9. Processing fees nonrefundable (Ksh. 10,000)
  • Class G:
  1. Documentary proof of capital to be invested at least USD 100,000
  2. Certificate of incorporation of the company
  3. Memorandum of association
  4. Articles of association
  5. Copy of PIN certificate if business is running
  6. Signed audited accounts for the last two years (renewal)
  7. Tax compliance certificate from KRA
  8. Processing fees nonrefundable (Ksh. 10,000)
  9. List of Kenyans already employed (in case of renewal)
  • Class I:
  1. Copy of registration certificate of the organization
  2. Certified copies of academic and professional certificates of the applicant (certificates not in English should be translated by either Embassy, Notary Public or authorized organization)
  3. Non refundable processing fees of Ksh. 1,000

  • Class K:

  1. Documentary proof of annual assured income of at least USD 24,000 per annum
  2. Non refundable processing fees of Ksh. 10,000

  •  Class M:

  1. Recommendation letter from Department of Refugee Affairs


Where an applicant has a Government contract, the following should be presented in addition to the other requirements:

  1. Valid signed contract;
  2. Letter from relevant Ministry or Government Department attaching list of applicants indicating their full names, nationality, passport number and profession.


Residence or work permit issued in respect of a person who is not present in Kenya at the time of issue shall cease to be valid if such person fails to enter Kenya within ninety days from the date of issue, provided that the Director may upon application in writing extend the validity of such residence or work permit for a period not exceeding ninety days.

The Director shall not issue a class K residence permit to any person unless that person has proven that he has funds in his or her full and free disposition an assured annual income of at least twenty-four thousand US dollars or its equivalent in Kenya shillings. A class K permit shall be valid for the period specified in the permit.

Class C permits shall be issued only to persons within the prescribed professions as specified in the Eighth schedule. In regard to employment permits, the employer specified in the work permit, shall, where a holder of a work permit ceases to engage in the employment of which the work permit was issued, report in writing to the Director, that the holder has ceased to engage in such employment, within fifteen days, from the date of such cessation. Any employer who fails to report the cessation as provided commits an offence.

Further, the Director may require any person engaged in a business, profession or occupation to make a report of all persons in his employment.

A work permit may be renewed by the Director upon payment of the prescribed renewal fees, provided that no permit shall be issued or renewed for a period exceeding five years from the date of issue or renewal as the case may be.

FOREIGN NATIONALS CERTIFICATE (ALIEN CARD)

The law requires all foreign nationals residing within Kenya for a period exceeding 90 days.

REQUIREMENTS

  1. Copy of valid passport bio data page
  2. Proof of residence (permit, permanent residency, dependent/student pass)
  3. Two colored current passport photographs (white background)
  4. Copy of previous alien card (renewal cases)
  5. A charge of Ksh 1000 per year (or part thereof)

     Registration process

STEPS OF APPLICATION

  1. Booking of an appointment for submission of application
  2. Receiving, verifying and approving application documents presented by foreign national on the appointment day.
  3. Capture of biometrics attributes (facial features & Finger prints)
  4. Issue of waiting slip to applicant pending production of foreigner certificate
  5. The applicant is notified to collect their card once ready via the account used to submit the application

The production of the card takes several weeks as it is done centrally by the National Registration Bureau who query the captured biometrics against their databases of Citizens and refugees. They keep a register for new applicants.

The following persons are exempted from Foreign National Registration.

  1. Serving member of the armed forces
  2. An embassy/consular staff posted in Kenya as well as their spouse and children
  3. A person exempted from the provisions of the Act under section 34(3) of the Act
  4. A refugee registered under the refugee Act 2006
  5. A person who resides in Kenya for a continuous period not exceeding three months and is in possession of visitors pass or special pass.


All Permits and passes are applied for online in the Directorate of Immigration services portal.

Rita Ricciardi

r.ricciardi@bergmore.com

Beatrice Sawe

b.sawe@bergsmore.com