Host Country National Law and Legal Definition

A host-country national (HCN) is an employee who is a citizen of a country in which an organization's branch or plant is located, but the organization is headquartered in another country. An impediment to hiring HCNs is that such employees may not understand the parent company’s culture. To deal with this issue, companies may base hiring decisions on certain criteria that serve to increase identification with the company and its values.

Many countries have national localization policies that require firms to hire locals rather than international employees when at all feasible. Some of the legal issues that arise in connection with employment of HCNs include determining which country's labor laws and tax laws are applicable.