Criminal Record Check Certificate in Vietnam: How to Prepare and Submit

Posted by Written by Pritesh Samuel Reading Time: 2 minutes

A criminal record check certificate is required for foreign employees when they apply for a work permit in Vietnam.

Foreigners working in Vietnam are required to obtain a work permit to legally work in the country. Failure to do can result in hefty fines for both the employer and the employee as well as deportation of the foreign national from Vietnam.

Vietnam’s work permit procedures can be confusing for foreign employees. One of the aspects when applying for a work permit is the criminal record check or police clearance certificate (Phieu Ly lich tup hap).

Vietnam Briefing explains the process of how and where to apply for a criminal record check certificate.

A criminal record check is granted for Vietnamese as well as foreigners who live in Vietnam or are currently living in Vietnam. Criminal record checks are issued by the provincial Department of Justice where the applicant residents and to prove if the applicant has a criminal record or is not allowed to hold certain job posts. This criminal record check certificate can also be used for other countries if the individual has lived in Vietnam for six months or more.

As per Vietnam’s laws, there are two types of criminal records. For work permits, applicants will be required to obtain criminal record form no 1.

What documents are required?

Applicants are required to prepare the following documents for submission:

  • Application form 03/2013/TT-LTP for a self-application or form 04/2013/TT-LTP in case someone is applying on the individual’s behalf;
  • Notarized copy of the passport (all pages which include the entry visa stamp, visa, or visa exemption certificate;
  • Notarized copy of the temporary resident card for the applicant that is renewing their work permit; and
  • Notarized copy of the temporary residence registration certificate (đơn xin xác nhận tạm trú) in Vietnam .*

*This needs to be obtained from your landlord in Vietnam or building management authority, which is a stamp by the local police stating you reside at the address. A copy of your passport and visa is required for this certificate as well.

While individuals can submit forms physically, we recommend that applicants apply online at as this has both Vietnamese and English language versions. Follow the on-screen instructions and upload the required documents as necessary.

Individuals can then submit to the Department of Justice physically or by post in the area where they live. The payment can be done directly to the Department of Justice or using the postal service. Individuals can also look up the status of their application on the website.

After finishing the process online, the individual will be issued an appointment paper. If this is done via post then the postal service will inform the applicant of the date when the documents will be collected; the fees will also be collected at this time.

Timeframe and costs

Typically, the criminal record check takes 15-20 days once the documents and payments are submitted, but applicants should allow ample time for processing. The fees are VND 200,000 (US$8.7)

Generally, for a work permit, labor authorities require the criminal record check to be issued within six months from the date of submission of the application.

Phuc Duong, Associate Manager for Business Advisory Services, Dezan Shira & Associates’ Ho Chi Minh City office notes that foreign employees particularly need to ensure they comply with work permit regulations in Vietnam and complete the criminal check record process with ample preparatory time to factor for any delays in legalizing documents and submission.

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Vietnam Briefing is produced by Dezan Shira & Associates. The firm assists foreign investors throughout Asia from offices across the world, including in HanoiHo Chi Minh City, and Da Nang. Readers may write to for more support on doing business in Vietnam.

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