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Immigration & Work Permits

Work Permits

Foreign workers are required to have the proper visas and work permits in Brazil, as established by immigration laws.  Work permits must be secured for employees, and sponsored by a locally licensed and incorporated entity, which can be a problem for companies just entering the Brazilian market.  If you have yet to complete the incorporation process you can use an outsourced management company or GEO Employer of Record to sponsor the employee for the necessary permits.

Your Options

Have your own Company

There are many different categories of visa that could be obtained to work in Brazil. The two major government agencies governing immigration in Brazil are: The National Immigration Council (“Conselho Nacional de Imigração”), which coordinates and supervises all immigration activities; and The General Coordination of Immigration (“Coordenação de Imigração do Ministério de Trabalho”) of the Ministry of Labor and Employment, which receives, reviews and approves all work permit applications for foreign workers.

The most commonly used working visa is the VITEM V temporary visa. It is usually issued to foreign nationals entering Brazil to provide technical assistance, research skills, or professional services as for a cooperation agreement or work contract. The VITEM V temporary visa requires approval of a work permit by the Ministry of Labor and Employment.

To be eligible for this visa applicants have to prove that they have:
– two years of relevant professional experience in the chosen field and at least nine years of education (school level); or

– a relevant university degree and one year of professional experience; or

– in case the candidate has a relevant post-graduate degree, no professional experience is required.

The process:

1. Brazilian employer submits all the potential employee’s documents (have to be translated into Portuguese) with the General Coordination of Immigration department

2. The approval is then be sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which will authorise the responsible Brazilian embassy or consulate in the country of residence of the prospective employee to start the work visa procedure.

3. The employee submits his documents to the local embassy.

According to the Procedure Guide issued by the Brazilian Ministry Of Labor, only legal entity established in Brazil can make an application for this visa. The documents required for this visa are:
For the company:
– “Work Permit Application Form”;

– “Applicant and Candidate Form”;

– documentation of the legal entity sponsoring the worker (company statutes or contractual alterations) registered with the Commercial Board or Public Civil Registry;

– document proving the appointment of the legal representative of the applicant

institution registered with the same registering agency;

– copy of the National Legal Entity Registration Card;

– signed document that the applicant takes full responsibility for all medical and hospital expenses of the prospective employee;

– GRU – State Revenue Collection Guide including proof of payment of individual immigration tax;

– proof that the employee’s remuneration is not less than the highest paid by the company for the same role;

– employment contract for the maximum period of two years (signed by both parties);

For the employee:

– information regarding all the addresses where employee will render their services;

– authorised copy of the passport;

– proof of education and compatible professional experience (reference letters, academic transcripts, CV, etc);

The Brazilian government also enforces a proportionality requirement under which the total sum of salaries paid to Brazilian employees must be more than twice the amount paid to foreign workers.

The duration of this visa is usually up to two years (subject to an extension, unless otherwise specified). The VITEM V visa could also be transformed into permanent working visa after the two-year period.

The visa fee is USD 290 for US citizens and USD 255 for UK citizens (if its validity exceeds 180 days). The fee varies depending on the country.


Use the Shield GEO Employer of Record Solution

Once you get in touch with us, one of our consultants will take all the work off your hands, coordinate with our local partners to get all the required permits organised, provide the processing time, costs, document-checklist and keep you informed through the process. Contact us to know more.

Types of visas in Brazil

Category Description of Visa
Permanent work visa (“Visto Permanente”)

This visa is usually issued to foreigner workers who are entitled to a permanent residence in Brazil (professional researchers or scientists, investors that invest more than US$ 50,000 per person or US$ 200,000 per company, manager or directors). As mentioned above, some holders of VITEM V visa are eligible to apply for permanent work visa after two years.

Generally, passport, birth certificate and marriage certificate (if applicable) are required to apply for this visa.

The visa fee is USD 360 for US citizens and USD 355 for UK citizens.

VITEM II (Business Trip) Visa

This visa is usually issued to foreign nationals traveling to Brazil for business purposes. However, with this type of visa, the foreign businessmen cannot receive any form of payment from the Brazilian company. They will typically remain on the foreign company payroll and render services on its behalf.

This visa is valid for up to ten years, with a maximum length of stay of 90 days per year (could be renewed once depending on the foreign national’s nationality).

– passport
– photograph
– ID and a proof of address
– copy of the most recent monthly bank statement
For some countries (e.g. the US) a photocopy of round trip tickets or a letter from travel agency proving that is required. There is also a requirement for those who had been to one of the Yellow Fever Countries within 90 days to obtain a Yellow Fever Vaccination.

The fee for the VITEM II visa is USD 160 for the US and USD 60 for most of the other countries.



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