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The Complete Guide to the E-5 Professional Visa

Updated: Dec 5, 2023


professional visa korea

Navigating visa requirements can be a daunting task. If you're a professional looking to work in South Korea, the E-5 Professional Visa may be your gateway. This guide will help you understand the nuances of this visa category.


I. What is the E-5 Visa?


The E-5 Professional Visa is a type of South Korean employment visa meant for professionals who wish to contribute to the Korean economy through their specialized skills and knowledge.


II. Who is Eligible for the E-5 Visa?


The E-5 Visa caters to a select group of professionals:

  • Certified Professionals: Those holding a national certificate, such as foreign lawyers, accountants, doctors, etc., and plan to work in legal, accounting, medical, and other fields prescribed by Korean laws.

  • Aircraft Pilots: Pilots hired by Korean airlines and recommended by the relevant ministry.

  • Medical Professionals: Doctors intending to work at state or local government medical institutions, medical corporations, non-profit corporations, or government-invested institutions.

  • Medical or Dental Interns/Residents: Graduates from domestic medical or dental schools in Korea intending to train at designated hospitals.

  • Essential Professionals of Ships: Professionals necessary for tourist ships' operation in line with the Inter-Korean Exchange and Cooperation Act.

  • Captains and Essential Crew: Individuals employed by domestic transportation companies intending to work as captains or indispensable crew for ship operation.

These professionals are recognized for their potential contributions to South Korea's development.


III. Duration of Visa and Entry Specifications


The E-5 Visa is a single-entry visa valid for 3 months. The initial period of stay is granted for up to 1 year. For details on Alien Registration or Visa extension, visit the Hi Korea website.


IV. Required Documents


Applicants need to submit:

  1. Visa Application Form (Form No. 17), passport, standard format photo, and fee.

  2. Certification of degree and a copy of the professional license.

  3. Recommendation letter from the head of a responsible government department.

  4. Employment Contract.

E-5 - Visa Application
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Download PDF • 177KB

Additional documents may be requested depending on the applicant's country of residence.


V. Frequently Asked Questions

Can I extend my E-5 Visa?

Is it mandatory to have a job offer before applying?

Are family members allowed to accompany applicants?

How do I get a government employment recommendation letter?

Are there any exceptions for obtaining the government employment recommendation letter?

In conclusion, the E-5 Visa allows skilled professionals to contribute to various sectors in South Korea. Understanding the application process, including eligibility and required documents, is crucial. Staying informed ensures a smooth transition and opens up rewarding opportunities.


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