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IMMIGRATION LAW - VIETNAM

A valid visa is required for entry into Vietnam. In order to obtain a business visa, a businessperson should be sponsored by an organization in Vietnam. Only citizens of few countries can visit Vietnam without entry visa (valid for visit within 30 days for Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and 21 days for Japanese, 14 days for Korea), all others require to get the entry visa before departure or pre-approved entry visa (the visa on arrival will be issued at a international airport) before arrival in Vietnam.

APPLYING FOR VIETNAM VISA

A Visa to Vietnam can be applied at the Embassy of Vietnam as early as six months prior to the date of travel. The applicant must submit following documents:

  1. Original passport at least 6 months valid
  2. One filled out visa application form
  3. 2 to 3 of 4x6 inch passport-size photographs.
  4. Visa fee by MONEY ORDER, or CASHIER'S CHECK, or CERTIFIED CHECK made out to "THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM."
  5. A self-addressed postage-paid return envelope 

The visa application form may vary from Embassy to Embassy, so you need to take the form from Embassy where you will get the visa. Submit this form filled with your original passport, 2 or 3 photo, visa fee. If you apply directly to Embassy, your information then be sent to Hanoi for approval, so it take about 4 to 10 days (depend on the country you apply). In case, the Visa is already approved at Immigration Office in Hanoi, it take you only one day.

The tourist visa is only for single entry and one month stay, but extendable after you enter Vietnam. Diplomatic, Official visas, Business and other type of visa should be applied through the official agencies or government or business sponsor. 

DIPLOMATIC AND OFFICIAL VISAS OF VIETNAM

Diplomatic and official visas will be granted GRATIS unless otherwise agreed upon between Vietnam and the applicant's country. 

In addition to the documents specified for applying for visa above the applicant must submit a note verbal or an official letter from the relevant agencies of the country, foreign embassies or consulates accredited to the country, and international organizations.

Business Visas Law of Vietnam

In addition to the documents specified in above the applicant must provide an approval obtained through his/her sponsor in Vietnam. The Embassy will issue visas only upon approval issued by the Immigration Department, Ministry of Public Security in Vietnam.

If the applicant does not have a host/sponsor in Vietnam, s/he may contact the Embassy for assistance.

Business people should send the following information to the sponsoring agency at least seven days before they wish to pick up their visa from the Vietnamese Embassy abroad: 

  1. Full name
  2. Date of birth
  3. Nationality
  4. Passport number
  5. Name of company or organization
  6. Port and date of entry and exit or tentative schedule
  7. Location of embassy and date for visa pickup
  8. Brief statement of the purpose of the visit 

Visitors must submit visa application forms with photographs and their passports to the Vietnamese Embassy in their country for visa issuance and pay a visa stamp fee.

A one-month renewable visa will generally be issued. Multiple entry-exit visas, which are good for three to six months may be obtained for visitors who have regular business in Vietnam.

PROCESSING TIME 

For processing the visa usually a five business days are required in normal visa applications. Expedited processing requires two (02) business days after the Embassy has received the application. 

VIETNAM VISA FEE 

The visa fee is in a range of 50 - 85US$ if applied directly to Embassy or 25-55 US$ if the visa has been pre-approved. This fee depend on Embassy and Type of visa.

ENTRY AND DEPARTURE REQUIREMENTS

Visitors must fill only one duplicate form for both emigration and customs declaration purposes when entering Vietnam of which one copy should be retained by visitors for departure. 

Visitors should declare all valuables such as cameras and computers etc., but foreign and Vietnamese currency equivalent to under US $3,000 and VND 5 million respectively need not be declared.

There is no restriction on books or other printed matter apart from pornographic or politically sensitive material. 

However, books and other media such as video cassettes must be screened. It is illegal to bring letters, packages or correspondence for others into or out of the country. It is also illegal to export antiques or Buddhas. 

All luggage is x-rayed on arrival and departure. Remember to keep your baggage claim tag, as it may be requested on arrival. Airport departure tax is US$ 10 in Hanoi and US$ 12 in Ho Chi Minh City for international flights and VND 25,000 for domestic passengers.

NATIONLITY

Law on Nationality of Vietnam Passed by the National Assembly on June 28, 1988 

Persons holding Vietnamese nationality include those who hold Vietnamese nationality up to the day this Law comes into force and those who will be granted Vietnamese nationality in accordance with the provisions of this Law.

Relationship between the State and citizens Vietnamese citizens shall be guaranteed all rights as citizens by the State of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, and must fulfil their obligations towards the State and society as provided by law. The State shall protect the legitimate rights of Vietnamese citizens living abroad.

RECOGNITION OF A SINGLE NATIONALITY FOR VIETNAMESE CITIZENS

The State of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam recognizes Vietnamese citizens as having only one nationality: Vietnamese. 

Retention of nationality in cases of marriage, divorce, annulment of unlawful marriage, and change of nationality by a husband or wife Marriage, divorce or annulment of unlawful marriage between a Vietnamese citizen and a foreigner or a stateless person, shall not change their respective nationality. Where a husband or wife is granted or loses Vietnamese nationality, there shall be no change to the nationality of the partner. 

PERSONS HOLDING VIETNAMESE NATIONALITY

A person can become Vietnamese national in one of the following circumstances applies: 

  1. By birth;
  2. Being granted Vietnamese nationality;
  3. Having Vietnamese nationality restored;
  4. Holding Vietnamese nationality in accordance with international treaties to which Vietnam is a party;
  5. Holding Vietnamese nationality in other cases as provided for by this Law.

NATIONALITY OF A CHILD

Any child born to parents who are Vietnamese citizens shall hold Vietnamese nationality regardless of whether that child was born inside or outside the territory of Vietnam.

Any child born to parents, one of whom is a Vietnamese citizen and the other a stateless person or person unknown, shall hold Vietnamese nationality regardless of whether that child was born inside or outside the territory of Vietnam.

Any child born to parents, one of whom is a Vietnamese citizen and the other a foreign national, if born inside Vietnamese territory or at a time when the parents have permanent residence in Vietnam shall hold Vietnamese nationality unless both parents decide otherwise. Where that child is born outside Vietnamese territory, and at a time when the parents have no permanent residence in Vietnam, the child's nationality shall be decided by the parents.

Any child born on Vietnamese territory and whose parents are both stateless persons but have permanent residence in Vietnam, shall hold Vietnamese nationality.

Any child found on Vietnamese territory and whose parents are unknown shall hold Vietnamese nationality.

GRANTING OF VIETNAMESE NATIONALITY

A foreign national or stateless person who is residing in Vietnam and voluntarily observes the Constitution and laws of Vietnam, may be granted Vietnamese nationality if satisfying the following conditions:

  1. Being 18 years of age or over;
  2. Speaking Vietnamese;
  3. Having been residing in Vietnam for at least five years. 

A foreign national or stateless person may, on legitimate grounds, be granted Vietnamese nationality without having to satisfy the above conditions.

Where persons have been granted Vietnamese nationality in accordance with the provisions of this Article, but have made inaccurate statements when applying for Vietnamese nationality, the decision to grant Vietnamese nationality may be revoked. 

Power to Decide Questions of Nationality

The council of Ministers shall determine in all cases the granting, relinquishing, restoration, depriving and revoking of decisions to grant Vietnamese nationality. 

Procedures for deciding all questions of nationality shall be determined by the Council of Ministers.

Before submitting, make sure you have included:

  1. Original Passport
  2. Completed Application with One Photo Attached.
  3. Self-addressed Pre-paid FedEx Slip, (for mailing back issued visas)
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