The frequency of scheduled migration checks in Russia now directly depends on the risk category to which a legal entity or an individual entrepreneur is assigned. These changes were introduced by the Decree of the Government* (the “Decree”) that took effect on 5 January 2018.
What the new rules say
Under the new rules, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation (the “Ministry”) can, depending on the risk category assigned to an employer, conduct scheduled inspections of companies to verify their compliance with the local migration legislation:
- extremely high-risk category: once a year;
- high-risk category: once every two years;
- significant-risk category: once every three years;
- moderate-risk category: not more often than once in five years;
- low-risk category: not more often than once in ten years.
In the past, scheduled migration checks of any company could be conducted not more often than once in three years, irrespective of the number of previously detected violations.
The decision to assign a company to a certain risk category is taken by the Ministry, and such decision is based on the criteria established by the Decree. Companies, which had faced administrative liability 35 or more times for migration violations in the two years preceding the Ministry’s decision, will be classified in the extremely high-risk category.
Companies, which had faced administrative liability for migration violations less than 15 times in the previous two years, will be classified as low-risk entities. Any company, which is not assigned to any specific risk category, is considered to be have been classified as a low-risk entity.
The lists of companies classified as extremely high, high and significant risk entities, will be published on the websites of the Ministry’s territorial agencies.
In addition, effective from 1 January 2018, Ministry officials are obliged during routine migration checks to use checklists of specified questions, thereby restricting the scope of such inspections.
If the Ministry carries out scheduled inspections to ensure compliance with the migration legislation more frequently than set out in the Decree, employers can challenge such actions. They can apply to the superior authority of the relevant agencies of the Ministry or to courts.
We recommend our clients check the lists of employers that are published on the websites of the Ministry’s territorial agencies in order to determine their risk categories. If an employer does not agree with the assigned risk category, it can apply to the Ministry to change the category.
We would also like to draw our clients’ attention to the fact that these new rules do not apply to unscheduled inspections, which are conducted by the Ministry based on complaints, applications and other information regarding violations of Russian migration legislation.
* In Russian