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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi All,

I have literally just arrived in Cape Town with my South African fiancé, and, having read some of the previous posts here, I am seriously confused so I’m hoping that someone might be able to help me out with a number of questions. Apologies in advance about the length and detail of this post.

I got my permit from the SA embassy in Dublin before I left Ireland. When applying for it they sent me a Requirements document for a ‘Relative and Life Partner’ permit (see attached file) and I was advised by the girl in the embassy that this would simply need to be endorsed once I find a job.

I am now trying to get my head around what I need to do next in order to find gainful employment as soon as possible!

So, I have a number of questions that have arisen after reading some of the previous posts on here…

  1. Is a ‘relative’ permit and a ‘life partner’ permit one and the same thing?
    The ‘requirements’ document which was sent to me by the embassy called it a ‘Relative and Life Partner Permit’. However I have seen previous posts which seem to state that they’re different. My permit states ‘Relative’ and then in the Conditions it states that I am ‘to be admitted on a relatives permit to accompany her partner’.
    Which do I have? Is this an issue?

  2. Further to the above, if there is a difference between ‘Relative’ and ‘Life Partner’, and if the one I have is a ‘Relative’, can this be endorsed for work?
    Again, the requirements doc. for a ‘relative and life partner permit’ sent to me by the embassy stated ‘This permit can be endorsed so the holder can work in South Africa, provided they have already been offered a position. Include a signed copy of the contract and offer letter (if applicable).’

  3. In terms of the ‘endorsement’, does that mean what it says i.e. that my existing permit can be endorsed, or do I have to re-apply for a new permit from scratch as per previous posts on this forum?

  4. What do I need to get the ‘endorsement’?
    Is there a particular application form, or do I simply need a signed copy of the contract and / or offer letter?

  5. Finally, when talking to prospective employers or applying for jobs, is it true to say that getting my work permit just a case of them offering me a job?
    I don’t want to scare them off because I don’t have a work permit so what’s the best way of approaching this…?


I hope all of these questions make sense, and if anyone can shed some light on the subject or any other related topics, I would really, really appreciate it.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Hi Audrey,

I think everyone that applied outside of S.A. got a relatives permit.

Mine says "Relatives permit to reside with life partner."

From what I understand it's not an issue. This is what they told me in Cape Town. I just had to fill out some more forms when I had a job offer. Sorry I am not in S.A. and I don't remember the forms, but I brought my Passport, and showed them the visa and they told me the forms I needed to fill out. I remember it being something like change of visa status and something else.

I also needed police clearance and X-ray. Most of the same forms you needed for the permit. I believe my life partner had to fill out a form or too.

In terms of the job I told my boss what I had. It's easier to get a job if you have a permit. Your employer doesn't have to fill out a bunch of forms.

Hope this helps.
 

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Yep, if you get a job offer you'd have to submit a completely new application which includes X-ray and medical certificates, police clearance report (unless they'll be still valid then), your fiance's bank statements, copies of his ID etc. plus a signed contract. The form you heed to fill in is BI-1740 (change of status of an existing permit).

I think that your future employer must sign the form as well.

P.S. The work endorsement is only for a particular employer so if you change your job you have to get another endorsement.
 

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Yep, if you get a job offer you'd have to submit a completely new application which includes X-ray and medical certificates, police clearance report (unless they'll be still valid then), your fiance's bank statements, copies of his ID etc. plus a signed contract. The form you heed to fill in is BI-1740 (change of status of an existing permit).

I think that your future employer must sign the form as well.

P.S. The work endorsement is only for a particular employer so if you change your job you have to get another endorsement.
Ugh that's the problem with HA they flipflop on what they need! I didn't have to do bank statements. But just a letter that he was employed and how long it was for.

Yes I had to have my employer sign a form, and present a letter.

Once you land a job you might want to keep it for a while because it is a hassle to change!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Both,

Really apprreciate the advice. I think I'll call into Home Affairs directly and see what they say, and in the meantime I'll start getting all the other documentation together again - I originally applied in April so I'm thinking they'll soom be out of date. Do you know what the time-frame for these is? 6 months?

One other question, when dealing with prospective employers and agencies, I can say that I have a permit that simply needs to be endorsed? Will they understand this or is there a better way of selling my situation to them?

Many thanks!
 

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Thanks Both,

Really apprreciate the advice. I think I'll call into Home Affairs directly and see what they say, and in the meantime I'll start getting all the other documentation together again - I originally applied in April so I'm thinking they'll soom be out of date. Do you know what the time-frame for these is? 6 months?

One other question, when dealing with prospective employers and agencies, I can say that I have a permit that simply needs to be endorsed? Will they understand this or is there a better way of selling my situation to them?

Many thanks!
Hi Audrey,
What documents did you apply for in April?

When I went to HA in Cape Town they told me I could use my Police Clearance up to 6 months. The same for the TB test. Everything was 6 months.

I put on my CV that I have a Life Partner Permit. I am sure if you go to a recruitment agency they can tell you how to better market yourself. This is just what I did. When I did get a call back I would tell them I didn't need a work permit.

If you are close to a HA office maybe go down and pick up the exact papers you need to be able to work.

I don't know what your job field is but it might take a while to find work here. Be prepared for a long job search. Just don't give up!!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Poopsie23.

I think I can get my hads on most of the docs from my original application but I fear they're nearing the 6 month mark. Fingers crossed.

I went down to HA in Wynberg today to get clarification on my permit and what I need but apparently I need to go to Barrack Street so I'm heading there tomorrow.

Thanks for the advice re. including details of my permit on my CV - good idea. In terms of recruitmet agencies, I'm not having much luck getting call backs but once I get clarification from HA, I'm going to start chasing them.

I'm in marketing with a wealth of senior level experience at home so I hope I get something soon. Once I get my head around my permit, then I think I'll be in a better position. Here for a while regardless so I'll just have to keep my chin up!

Thanks again.
 

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Thanks Poopsie23.

I think I can get my hads on most of the docs from my original application but I fear they're nearing the 6 month mark. Fingers crossed.

I went down to HA in Wynberg today to get clarification on my permit and what I need but apparently I need to go to Barrack Street so I'm heading there tomorrow.

Thanks for the advice re. including details of my permit on my CV - good idea. In terms of recruitmet agencies, I'm not having much luck getting call backs but once I get clarification from HA, I'm going to start chasing them.

I'm in marketing with a wealth of senior level experience at home so I hope I get something soon. Once I get my head around my permit, then I think I'll be in a better position. Here for a while regardless so I'll just have to keep my chin up!

Thanks again.
Hi Audrey,

I have found the Barrack one much more helpful! They totally redid it not to long ago and it looks quite nice and modern.

I hope you can find something soon! And don't give up. Just keep sending your CV out to as many people as possible!!
 

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I just got a job with Global Telesales as a customer service rep supporting Lufthansa Airlines and their affiliates. It's not a great paying job but after 17 months trying to get settled it's a start. Depending on your expectations you may need to adjust them and take what you can get because it's tough to find companies willing to take a chance on foreign nationals because a) they don't understand that we aren't subject to all the T's & C's that most foreigners are as spouses of citizens and b) they know they may have to wait months and months for you to start work depending on Home Affairs. GTS is a good employer, it's a large worldwide company so there are opportunities. If you speak German, Dutch, French or Hebrew you'll have a leg up. I only speak English so I had to wait for them to need English only reps before they called me for an interview but I kept in touch with them for over six months periodically until I hit a time when they were looking for English reps.
 

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You SHOULD need a work permit with a Life Partner Permit. I am married and I must have a work permit or work endorsement to hold a job. If a Life Partner Permit gives you automatic working rights and doesn't require you to acquire a work permit before starting a job I'd be highly surprised and VERY upset that it's not that way for someone whose married.

Hi Audrey,
What documents did you apply for in April?

When I went to HA in Cape Town they told me I could use my Police Clearance up to 6 months. The same for the TB test. Everything was 6 months.

I put on my CV that I have a Life Partner Permit. I am sure if you go to a recruitment agency they can tell you how to better market yourself. This is just what I did. When I did get a call back I would tell them I didn't need a work permit.

If you are close to a HA office maybe go down and pick up the exact papers you need to be able to work.

I don't know what your job field is but it might take a while to find work here. Be prepared for a long job search. Just don't give up!!
 

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You SHOULD need a work permit with a Life Partner Permit. I am married and I must have a work permit or work endorsement to hold a job. If a Life Partner Permit gives you automatic working rights and doesn't require you to acquire a work permit before starting a job I'd be highly surprised and VERY upset that it's not that way for someone whose married.
HI RSA

What I meant by not needing a 'work permit' is you don't have to go through the full hassel of proving that no other South African can do the job that you are trying to fill. And have to put the job in the paper. A lot more has to happen if you want a work permit. You still had to have a work endorsement. It's just easier if you have a Life Partner or Spousal Permit.
 

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Did you find a job yet? If not, don't buy into that it's easier mumbo jumbo. Yes in theory it should be easier for us as spouses or Life Parnter but it's not. It still is a big negative in the eyes of employers to have to wait on HA to issue your work endorsement (by any other name, still a work permit). They are supposed to be issued within 30 days and they WILL NOT allow you to start working while your application is pending. It cannot be withheld without valid reason but still when an employer offers you a job they want you to start as soon as possible. Waiting for 60-90 days, which was the period they told me this past Thursday when I submitted my application, just doesn't fly with most companies.

If you've been lucky enough to find a job already, you're one of the lucky ones.

HI RSA

What I meant by not needing a 'work permit' is you don't have to go through the full hassel of proving that no other South African can do the job that you are trying to fill. And have to put the job in the paper. A lot more has to happen if you want a work permit. You still had to have a work endorsement. It's just easier if you have a Life Partner or Spousal Permit.
 

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Did you find a job yet? If not, don't buy into that it's easier mumbo jumbo. Yes in theory it should be easier for us as spouses or Life Parnter but it's not. It still is a big negative in the eyes of employers to have to wait on HA to issue your work endorsement (by any other name, still a work permit). They are supposed to be issued within 30 days and they WILL NOT allow you to start working while your application is pending. It cannot be withheld without valid reason but still when an employer offers you a job they want you to start as soon as possible. Waiting for 60-90 days, which was the period they told me this past Thursday when I submitted my application, just doesn't fly with most companies.

If you've been lucky enough to find a job already, you're one of the lucky ones.
I've had two jobs since I have been here in Cape Town. But they have been jobs I wouldn't have taken in the U.S.A. You wouldn't believe the jobs people send me. I have a Masters Degree, and tons of experience. And I send out my CV, and they place me working in a call center. It's such a joke.
 

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Join the club man. I have an MBA and 20+ years of experience. My first job was a sales position for a dodgy immigration company that I resigned because I could feel good about what they expected of me to sell. That was R10,000 base plus commission (which I never drew) and the job I'm supposed to start 11 Feb is customer service starting at R6,530. I should be interviewing for jobs making 5 times that amount put I can't get my foot in the door. Recruiters won't help me because I over qualified or my experience is no longer "relevant" because I've been working for myself the past 10 years. It's very frustrating. What's your name by the way. PM me if you want. I'm Scott.

I've had two jobs since I have been here in Cape Town. But they have been jobs I wouldn't have taken in the U.S.A. You wouldn't believe the jobs people send me. I have a Masters Degree, and tons of experience. And I send out my CV, and they place me working in a call center. It's such a joke.
 

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I have had one job since coming here 4years ago. I have the job I want but for a poor salary. Looking for an alternative job has been like looking for hens teeth. I have a masters in IT and jobs are there. But all the ones with good salary seem reserved for south african citizens. Since landing this job, I have churning out CVs with little or no response from employment agencies. Jobs gets advertised for months while qualified foreignors are languishing to get offers.

My advice don't despair keep looking.
 

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Don't worry I haven't stopped looking but at least I have something in the meanwhile as it seems do you. I'm a bit confused by your flag indicators; it shows you are a Zimbabwean living in Australia but you are speaking about finding a job in SA, right?



I have had one job since coming here 4years ago. I have the job I want but for a poor salary. Looking for an alternative job has been like looking for hens teeth. I have a masters in IT and jobs are there. But all the ones with good salary seem reserved for south african citizens. Since landing this job, I have churning out CVs with little or no response from employment agencies. Jobs gets advertised for months while qualified foreignors are languishing to get offers.

My advice don't despair keep looking.
 

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I had a laugh on your comment. I realised that I created account a while ago when I had big hopes of being in Oz. Iam in SA. I have had second thoughts about Oz after seeing how tough it is land a job with ideal salary in SA.I went through some foras and found that expats are faced with growing concern where you have a permit and all but local companies have a bias torwards their local people.
 
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