- By Adv. Dotan Cohen
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Jewish foreign nationals who are not Israeli citizens are entitled to obtain legal status in Israel through residency and employment.
The Law of Return (5710 – 1950) determines the right of every Jewish person to immigrate to the State of Israel. The intent of the law is to facilitate the relatively easy process of relocation to Israel for every Jewish person. According to the Israeli Nationality Law, Jewish persons who immigrant to Israel will receive a “Teudat Oleh” (Certificate of New Immigrant Status) and Israeli citizenship.
In order to facilitate Aliyah (Jewish Immigration to Israel), the Israeli government encourages Jewish foreign nationals who are not ready to immigrate to come via the work permit procedure. This process carries benefits for both the Jewish foreign nationals and the State of Israel.
Work Permit Application Process (B-1)
The B-1 visa process encourages Jewish foreign nationals to consider immigrating to Israel by offering a fast-track process for temporary work and residence in the country.
In order to be eligible for the B-1 visa, the Jewish foreign national must qualify under the Law of Return and not already hold Israeli citizenship. Applicants who fulfill these criteria and are accepted into the program will receive benefits such as a waiver of government fees and extension of the visa to the maximum time limit. B-1 visa holders also gain the right to apply for an M visa (inter-visa) which allows multiple entries and exits in and out of Israel with no additional government expenses.
Interview at the Ministry of Interior (MOI)
In order to apply for a work visa in Israel, Jewish foreign nationals are required to attend an appointment at the MOI and bring with them several documents including proof of eligibility under the Law of Return and proof of Judaism. Proof of Judaism generally consists of a letter from a rabbi approved by the Jewish Agency.
The MOI will check the candidate’s full personal details. In addition to ensuring that the applicant meets the above requirements, the MOI will also run a criminal/ security check on applicants who resided in Israel for six months or more.
The B-1 visa can be valid for up to five years. The Jewish foreign national may request a shorter validity period based on the dates of his stay in Israel. The candidate may apply for an M visa (inter-visa) within the same period of time, subject to no additional government charge.
Upon B-1 visa approval, the visa holder may work in any legal job in Israel. The visa’s validity is not restricted to any particular employer or field of employment.
The visa holders will be eligible to apply for permanent residency or citizenship (make “Aliya”) upon the work permit’s expiration.
The procedure of applying for a work permits by Jewish foreign national is facilitated with ease and provides easy solutions to Jewish people who are not an Israeli citizens.
Many of the applicants chooses the fast-track process for temporary work and residence route. This legal status in Israel allows them to examine the option of immigrating to Israel.
The country and the immigration authority goal is to encourage Jewish foreign national to immigrate to Israel.
The easy and friendly process bring other benefits such waiver of government fees, extension of the visa to the maximum time limit, and M visa (inter-visa) which allows multiple entries and exits in and out of Israel with no additional government fees.
All said and explained in this article does not constitute a legal opinion and does not replace legal advice. Responsibility for using the wordings and opinions conveyed in this article relies solely and entirely on the reader.
This article was written by Dotan Cohen Law Offices, working in the field of immigration law in the United States, Canada, Australia and England.