Most foreign companies with assignments at Norwegian building or construction sites need specific ID cards for their workers. Without these ID cards their workers will be denied access to Norwegian building or construction sites. Below we will explain further what these ID cards are, why they are needed, and how to get them.
What are ID cards for building and construction sites?
ID cards for building and construction sites (“HSE cards” / “HMS-kort” / “byggekort”) are ID cards that workers must keep clearly visible while present on a building or construction site in Norway. These ID cards provide Norwegian authorities and clients with an overview of who is working at a building or construction site, and who they are working for. The ID cards are supposed to increase security, prevent social dumping and prevent illicit work.
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Why do foreign companies need ID cards for their workers?
Norwegian law requires all enterprises that carry out work on a construction or building site, to provide ID cards for their workers. Many contracts for assignments in Norway also require foreign contractors to get ID cards for their workers. Failure to comply with this requirement may have serious consequences.
Foreign workers without ID cards may simply be denied admission to the building or construction site, causing a delay to the assignment in Norway. A delay / failure to comply may lead to negative contractual and/or commercial effects for the foreign contractor. Additionally, Norwegian authorities may fine foreign contractors for failing to comply with the requirement.
How can foreign companies get ID cards for their workers?
The ID cards can only be ordered from a card issuer designated by the Ministry of Labour and Social Inclusion. Foreign companies may face several challenges when ordering ID cards for their workers, since quite a lot of requirements must be met before the ID cards can be ordered. Additionally, at times there may be long processing times with Norwegian authorities. Thus, a foreign company should prepare for ordering the ID cards as soon as possible. Below we will present the requirements that must be met before the cards will be issued.
Requirement 1: The foreign company must be registered in Norway
Before an ID card can be ordered the foreign contractor must register their company at the Central Coordinating Register for Legal Entities (“Enhetsregisteret”). Such registration is mandatory under the ID card regulations. By registering, the foreign company will get a Norwegian organisation number which provides unique identification of the company.
Staffing enterprises must also register at the Register of Staffing Enterprises. VAT liable companies are required to additionally register in the VAT register.
Requirement 2: The contract and workers must be reported
Before an ID card can be ordered, the foreign contractor must report the contract and workers to the Norwegian tax authorities. The contractor reports the contract and workers by filing RF-1198. The client will file RF-1199. The report can be filed through the online portal “Altinn”.
Correctly reporting the assignment and workers is very important. Any mistakes with the reporting, particularly with the reported dates of the assignment or working periods of the workers, may become a serious obstacle when ordering the ID cards.
When the contract and workers have been reported, the workers will need to have their identities verified at a tax office that offers ID control. The tax authorities will issue tax deduction cards and assign D-numbers to the workers once the identity verification has been completed. The D numbers will be needed for ordering the ID cards.
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Requirement 3: An orderer must be registered
An orderer must be registered once the company has been registered, the contract and workers have been reported, form RF-1198 processed, and the D-numbers have been assigned. The orderer is a person formally responsible for ordering the ID cards. The orderer must be selected from one of the workers reported on RF-1198, or each worker could be an orderer of their own ID card. It is important that the orderer has received a D-number and that he has an active employment in Norway at the time of registering him as an orderer.
If one worker orders ID cards on behalf of all workers, then this worker needs to have an active employment in Norway when ordering ID cards for the other workers. The orderer’s reported working period should be at least for the same periods (or longer) as the other workers. Thus, it may be preferable to make the worker with the longest working period reported on RF-1198 the orderer of the ID cards.
Requirement 4: The cards must be ordered correctly
Having registered an orderer, it is time for ordering the ID cards. At this time all workers must be successfully registered in Norway and have received their D-numbers.
The ID cards must be ordered through the online portal of a specific card issuer. When ordering the ID cards, a copy of each worker’s picture and signature must be uploaded to the online portal. A copy of each worker’s passport or national identity card must also be uploaded.
The documents uploaded must meet certain requirements, otherwise the order will be rejected. The copy of the pictures should meet the quality standards of a passport photograph (i.e. a clear, focused picture on a white background). Likewise, the copies of the passports, and the signatures should be clear and good quality. Any uploaded document, not in compliance with these requirements, may result in the order being fully or partially rejected.
When the documents have been uploaded, a small fee must be paid for the ID cards. The application can then be submitted. Sometime after having submitted the application, the orderer will receive a confirmation of order if the order was successful. If the order was unsuccessful, the orderer will receive a rejection specifying what is wrong or missing.
Foreign companies with workers at Norwegian building or construction sites need specific ID cards for their workers to avoid fines and workers being denied access to the sites. Before the ID cards can be issued, the foreign company must register with the Central Coordinating Register for Legal Entities, report their contracts and workers on RF-1198, register an orderer with the card issuer, and order the cards correctly using an online portal.
The process to order ID cards may take time, and there is the possibility that the order will be rejected. Thus, foreign companies with assignments at Norwegian building or construction sites, should register and report to Norwegian authorities as early and diligently as possible.
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Article first published 14 August 2018 - updated 8 May 2019