A Turkish work permit cannot be self-sponsored; it must be sponsored by a Turkish legal entity (a joint stock company, joint venture, limited liability company, or liaison office), with the exception of domestic workers, who may be sponsored by the appropriate individual. A Turkish entity that sponsors the work permit application (and acts as the local employer) must meet certain requirements that must be maintained over the life of the work permit. The employer must have at least five Turkish citizen employees per registered worksite per foreign applicant as evidenced on payroll records (termed the “5:1 ratio”), and the employer’s “paid in capital” cannot be less than 100,000 Turkish Lira (TL). In the alternative to the capital requirement, the employer can show a gross (assumedly annual) sales amounting to 800,000 TL annually, or exports with a gross annual value of USD $250,000. Certain exemptions for the 5:1 ratio exist but are not often granted by the Ministry. The employer must maintain the criteria throughout the work permit period.
As of February 26, 2018, any sponsor of a work permit must have an e-signature tool issued by the government-designated agencies. This means that no work permit applications can be logged in without the use of a company-sponsor e-signature tool. Each company’s designated social security e-notification authority—who is also the e-signature holder—must complete a Ministry of Labor company registration through the online system to pursue work permit applications.