Things to consider before you plan to work abroad
This post should not be taken as a piece of legal advice, I am not an immigration expert nor an immigration lawyer, so it’s best to get an advice of an immigration expert as they can guide you better.
Many developers these days want to know how they can work abroad and have questions like
- How do you get a job outside the country?
- How much did you pay for the visa?
- Should I apply for a student visa first and then find a job?
- What should be the salary expectations based on my skill sets and years of experience?
In this post, I will try to answer a few of them, and once again if you want to work outside your current country then I suggest getting in touch with an immigration expert to get things started.
You need to have a work visa
When you see a job posting at Stack Overflow, LinkedIn, or any job site which is outside your current country. Do not apply to that job without a valid work visa of that country.
Example: If you see a job opportunity in London, then you must have a valid work visa for working in the UK with all documents, and a stamping of that work visa in your current passport which is not expired.
The very first thing HR will ask you is a photocopy of your passport and a valid work visa and if you don’t have that then in that case the company will not consider you as a candidate for that position.
Having a work visa is the most basic requirement these days and it’s done to prevent fraud, and without that the company won’t consider you for an interview despite you have 10 or 20 years of experience you must have a valid work visa stamping in your current passport.
So I am assuming the next question is
Okay, How do I get myself a work visa? Is there a criteria or can anyone apply to get a work visa?
With my knowledge and I may be wrong here, different countries will have different requirements for you to get a visa, and getting a visa can be an expensive process
The most common route many people take is to get a student visa by enrolling themselves in some universities but then to enroll in a university outside your current country can be expensive and it has its challenges which is not the scope of this post.
So let’s say you didn’t go the student visa route so what now?
Well, the second chance at this is via your company, most companies have offices/clients outside your country and if you work hard and write your test cases and implement clean code practices then you may be the company may consider you for an onsite task.
Again, how does the company pick a person I have no idea about that but I think it’s good if the company sponsors your visa because that way you don’t have to pay the visa fee from your pocket.
If your company is sending you on a work visa to a country then one of the things you should do is research the salary of a developer of your skillset and years of experience, and not only this you must also research about the lifestyle, apartment and utility expenses in the city you will be in.
Example: Let’s say your company plans to send you to New York with a monthly salary of $3500, well I am sorry to break it to you but an apartment in New York could cost you around $1200–$1500 and am pretty sure you would need to remit some money to your family too and there are other lifestyle-related expenses too so $3500 will surely not be enough.
If your company is sending you then ask them your monthly in hand, minus the tax deductions because you don’t want to end up in a city where the cost of living is higher than your salary.
The worst thing is you cannot say that if I am getting $3500 I will not live in an expensive city or anything, so ask HR about the monthly amount after the tax deduction always.
Working a second job or side income?
I know what you must be thinking that in the day I will work for the company that has sponsored the work visa, and at night I will work as an independent developer taking projects doing freelancing.
Well, let me stop you there if you do this then it’s against the law and the punishment is either you will be fired from the company who sponsored your visa, or worst case you will have to leave the country I am not very sure what will happen in this case.
Plus let’s say for some reason that freelancing work is not done then clients can take you to court for not completing the projects on time and even ask you to pay a hefty penalty.
Don’t do anything which can potentially put your future at risk, if you want to earn more then simply find a new job and do it the right way than doing all these activities.
Once again, all of this is not a piece of legal advice, I am not an immigration expert, always consult an expert on such topics as an expert can guide you much better than some blog or video.
I hope this article was helpful, thank you for your time.