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Proving Your Last Day of Work: Change Employment Visa Sponsorship in Hong Kong

June 23rd, 2023

Posted in Employment Visas, Feature Article, Musing, The Hong Kong Visa Geeza /



If you’re looking to change employment visa sponsorship in Hong Kong, you might be wondering how to prove your last day of work for your previous employer to the Hong Kong Immigration Department. In this post, I’ll guide you through the process and the necessary documentation required to get it done.

Change Employment Visa Sponsorship

Release Letter For Change Employment Visa Sponsorship Applications?

When applying to change employment visa sponsorship, you’ll need to provide the Immigration Department with documentation that clearly states your last day of employment with your previous employer.

At the Hong Kong Visa Centre, we refer to this as the Bye Bye Letter. This can be in the form of:

  • A termination letter
  • A letter giving notice
  • Any other document or email correspondence generated at the time the employment cessation date was notified between the parties

It’s important to note that you don’t need a so-called “Release Letter” from your current employer. The Immigration Department only needs the final date of employment to demarcate the old sponsorship arrangements from the proposed new sponsorship arrangements.

Other Things To Consider In Change Employment Visa Sponsorship Applications

Te following elaborates on the key points of the change of employer application process and the criteria in play for success.

First and foremost, in all applications under the General Employment Policy, including change employment visa sponsorship applications, applicants must have a strong educational background, typically a bachelor’s degree, along with at least two years of post-graduation experience in a managerial or supervisory role. In some cases, the Hong Kong Immigration Department may accept technical qualifications, proven professional abilities, and extensive relevant work experience instead of a formal university education.

This highlights the importance of showcasing the applicant’s skills, knowledge, and experience, which must be valuable and not readily available in Hong Kong.

Applicants must also be of good character, which means they should have no security objections or serious criminal record.

Furthermore, the compensation package offered to the applicant should be on par with market rates. Employers cannot offer lower salaries to foreign professionals compared to local employees for the same role.

The employing company must be deemed a suitable and credible sponsor by the Hong Kong Immigration Department. This means that the company should be well-established, have a properly set up office, and already employ Hong Kong locals. The company must demonstrate local recruitment efforts for the role in question unless the applicant’s salary exceeds HKD2 million per annum or their role is included on the Talent List published by the Hong Kong Immigration Department.

If no local recruitment has been carried out, official declarations must be made on the sponsorship form ID990B, stating the reasons for the absence of local recruitment.

In the application process, various documents are required from both the employer and employee. However, if the company has had an employment visa approved by the Hong Kong Immigration Department within the last 24 months, the documentation needed for the employer is significantly reduced.

The change employment visa sponsorship application process typically takes between four and six weeks. Under no circumstances should the applicant begin their employment duties until the visa application has been approved. There are no exceptions to this rule.

Overall, the application process evaluates applicants based on a set of criteria, including their education and experience, genuine job vacancy, confirmed employment offer, job relevance, local workforce availability, and remuneration package.

Additional Resources When Undertaking Change Employment Visa Sponsorship Applications

For more information on the change of employment visa sponsorship process in Hong Kong and how to prove your last day of work to the Immigration Department, check out the following resources:

Even More Stuff To Change Employment Visa Sponsorship Arrangements

Plenty more here to help you along in your application:

Your Employer Must Help You Get Your Hong Kong Employment Visa

The 7 Things to Tell Your Employer About Hong Kong Employment Visa Sponsorship

My Employment Visa Expires Before My Change Employment Visa Sponsorship Application Will Be Finalized – Help!

Hong Kong Employment Visa Self-Sponsorship – The Reality for Entrepreneurs Masquerading As Employees

The 5 Key Factors Which Impact On Your Eligibility For A Hong Kong Employment Visa


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The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.

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