Operating a Private Employment Agency
In order to operate a Private Employment Agency in the Republic of Cyprus, legal or natural persons need to obtain a licence for the operation of such an establishment from the Director of the Department of Labour of the Ministry of Labour, Welfare and Social Insurance.
The establishment and operation of private employment agencies is regulated by the Private Employment Agency Laws of 2012 until 2013. The term “Private Employment Agency” refers to any legal or natural person who acts as a mediator for employment of persons available for work, for the purpose of either direct or indirect pay / fee / material gain / other charges or without charge.
Who is Eligible
Natural or legal persons are eligible to obtain a Licence to operate a Private Employment Agency, provided that the Department of Labour is satisfied that the following conditions are fulfilled:
- In the case where the agency is managed by a natural person, the person must be a citizen of the Republic of Cyprus or any other Member State of the European Union. The person should not be subject to bankruptcy or any other legal disability;
- In the case where the agency is managed by a legal person, the person must be incorporated according to the relevant legislation of the Republic, must have registered offices in Cyprus and must not have been under compulsory liquidation or winding-up order;
- The person responsible for the operation of the Agency, the Directors in case of Company or the partners in case of Partnership:
- must not have been sentenced for a serious offence as mentioned in the article 6 of the Law including an offence in violation of the provisions of the Aliens and Immigrations Laws and Regulations;
- must not have been employed in certain Governmental Departments in Cyprus the last 2 years according to the article 6(1) of the Law;
- must not perform the parallel activities described in article 20 of the Law.
- The person responsible for the operation of the Agency must be a citizen of the Republic of Cyprus or any other Member State and must hold one of the following:
(I) a recognized diploma, degree or university title in one of the subjects mentioned in the article 8(1)(α) of the Law;
(II) a recognized diploma, degree or university title in subject other than those mentioned in the article 8(1)(α) of the Law and Master degree in one of the subjects mentioned in the article 8(1)(α);
(III) a recognized diploma, degree, university title or master degree in subject other than those mentioned in the article 8(1)(α) and has attended a training program related to employment / labour law organized by the competent authority;
(IV) a secondary education certificate and has attended a training program related to employment / labour law organized by the competent authority and succeeded in the relevant examination.
- When the Agency is dealing with the recruitment of managerial / professional personnel then the person responsible for the operation of the Agency must hold a university degree as mentioned in (I)-(III) above or in case of (IV) have three (3) years of relevant experience in the placement of managerial / professional personnel;
- Private Employment Agency must have, within six (6) months from the date of the first issue of its licence, necessary office infrastructure of at least 30m2 and necessary technical equipment.
Where to Apply
The application for issuing or renewing a license for the establishment of a Private Employment Agency can be submitted either though the PSC Cyprus or by contacting directly the District Labour Offices (Nicosia, Larnaca, Limassol, and Paphos) of the Ministry of Labour, Welfare and Social Insurance.
Department of Labour
Ministry of Labour, Welfare and Social Insurance
9 Klimentos str,
1061 Nicosia, Cyprus
Tel.: +357 22400836
Fax: +357 22400932
Which Certificates must be Submitted
The application must be accompanied by the following:
- Certified copies of identity cards or passports of the Directors in case of company, the Partners in case of Partnership, the applicant in case of natural person and of the persons’ responsible for the operation of the Office;
- Original Certificate of Clear Criminal Record Certificate for the Directors in case of company, the Partners in case of Partnership, the applicant in case of natural person and of the person responsible for the operation of the Agency;
- Certified copies of the Academic Qualifications of the person responsible for the operation of the Agency;
- Affidavit that the Directors in case of Company, the Partners in case of Partnership and the person responsible for the operation of the Agency do not perform the activities described in articles 6(1)(στ) & 20 and have not been employed in specific Governmental Departments in Cyprus according to the article 6(1)(ζ) of the Private Employment Agencies Law of 2012;
- Certificates of Incorporation, Registered Office, Directors and Secretary, Shareholders, Good Standing, Non-Winding Certificate / Non-Compulsory Liquidation and the Company’s Memorandum & Articles of Association from the Department of Registrar of Companies and Official Receiver (in case of a Company);
- Certificate of Partners from the Department of Registrar of Companies and Official Receiver (in case of Partnership);
- Non-bankruptcy Certificate (Solvency Certificate) in case of natural person issued by the Insolvency Service;
- Certificate of attending a training program related to employment / labour law or certificate of passing the relevant examination (where applicable);
- Copy of Work Employment Certificate (from the employer- where applicable);
- Copy of Certificate of Contributions from the Social Insurance Services;
- Fee of €100 for the examination of the first application, €300 for the first issue of the license according to the Private Employment Agencies Regulations.
Fees Applicable & How to Pay
Fee of €100 for the examination of the first application, €300 for the first issue of the license according to the Private Employment Agencies Regulations.
The applicant is informed regarding the authorization decision normally within three months from the date that the application form and supporting documents were duly submitted.
Licence Validity Period
The licence is valid for a three-year period from the date of issue and is renewed automatically with the submission of an application form and the payment of the license fee of €300 as defined in the Private Employment Agencies Regulations.
Dispute with the Competent Authority's Decision
How to File an Administrative Action
Administrative Action Against a Competent Authority’s Decision
Any person may file an Administrative Action at the Administrative court against a decision, act or omission of any competent authority or body.
Pursuant to Article 146 of the Constitution, an Administrative Action may be lodged within 75 days from the date of the decision or act or omission or from the day when such decision or act or omission was notified to the applicant.
The Administrative Court acts as a cassation Court and not as a substantive Court. In other words, the Administrative Court may:
I. Dismiss the Administrative Action
II. Annul wholly or partially the contested decision or act
III. Compel the relevant authority or body to take a certain action
After a decision is annulled, the authority and/or public body must reverse things back to the state prior to when the concerned decision and/or act was executed and reexamine.
How to Appeal
An Appeal may be filed against the Administrative Court’s first-instance decision within a period of 42 days from the date such decision was given.
At the Supreme Court (Court of Appeal Section) hearing, the contested issue of the appeal remains the legality of the decision or act already adjudicated for. However, such revision of the legality of the decision or act is solely examined on the matters and the extent that the two parties have limited the reasons in the relevant notice of appeal.
The decision adopted by the Supreme Court is considered final in relation to the matter that has been judged.
Legislation & Obligations
Which Laws and Regulations Apply
What are my Obligations
Τhe person responsible for the operation of a Private Employment Agency is obliged to comply with the provisions of the Private Employment Agencies Laws of 2012, as periodically amended, and specifically among others with the following:
- The licence’s holder must notify in writing (within one month) the competent authority for any substantial change in the information provided (i.e. change of address) when the application was submitted;
- Keep appropriate records as defined in Regulations;
- The name and the licence number of any Private Employment Agency must be clearly mentioned in all announcements submitted in any newspaper or other paper;
- The licence to operate as a Private Employment Agency must be posted in a conspicuous place of the establishment;
- A sign with the Private Employment Agency’s name and licence number must be posted in a conspicuous place outside the building;
- The Private Employment Agency’s licence number must be posted in case the agency maintains a website on the internet.
Restrictions in the activities of the Private Employment Agency
The Private Employment Agency is not allowed to:
- Promote applicants without written instructions of good faith from the employer;
- Provide wrong information as regards the terms and conditions of employment and the qualifications of the applicant;
- Promote the employment of a person in a workplace in which its current employees are on strike;
- Promote the employment of young persons (under 18 years of age).
Protections of Wages
The employer or the Private Employment Agency shall not impose any charge on the employee for the purpose of job search, placement and maintenance of employment. Furthermore the Private Employment Agency is not allowed to collect from the Employer the wages of the employee even if the Agency has written authorization from the employed person.
The competent authority may ask any Private Employment Agency to submit within a specified time:
a) The number of the employees that the agency offered its services for recruitment during the last year according to:
- Education level;
- Categories as unemployed or not, sex, age;
- Type of employment contract;
- Duration of labour contract.
b) The number of employers to whom the Agency offered its services during the last year, according to economic activity e.g. agriculture, animal husbandry, construction, trade, services, private households.
Revocation of Licence
The competent authority may also revoke a licence in case:
- The person responsible for the operation of the office or any of the Directors in case of company or any of the Partners in case of partnership, has been convicted for an offense as mentioned in the article 6(1);
- The owner of the licence is declared bankrupt;
- The owner of the licence has prepared a forged document;
- The owner of the licence has died;
- During inspection is found that the provisions of the licence are violated and the owner of the licence cannot or refuses to comply with the suggestions of the competent authority;
- The owner of the licence refuses to comply with the decision of the competent authority for non-approval of the reported changes (article 12).
The competent authority appoints inspectors who are responsible for the monitoring and implementation of the Law. Whoever prevents the inspector from exercising his duties is punished with imprisonment up to six months or a fine of up to €5000 or both penalties.