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DECREE OF THE NEW MIGRATION LAW

There is the provision of a new type of visa designated as “visitor visa” destined to people who come to Brazil without the intention to become resident in the country. The visitor visa may be used to: tourism, business, transit, performance of artistic and sports activities. As a general rule, the visitor visa shall be issued for 1 year and will enable the stay in Brazil for 90 days extendable for 90 additional days based on reciprocity with other countries. 
 
The Decree opened the possibility to grant visitor visa to the performance of a) artistic and sport activities; b) audit and consulting activities; or c) to work as maritime. The visitor visa for these situations will allow 90 days of stay and cannot be extended.
 
The visitor visa may be transformed (converted) into residence authorization or into diplomatic, official or courtesy visas at the Brazilian territory.  
 
As a guideline, the Decree forbids that the holder of the visitor visa performs remunerated activities in Brazil.   
 
Temporary visas: 
 
The Decree foresees that the temporary visa may be granted to the performance of the following activities: a) research, teaching or academic extension; b) health treatment; c) humanitarian aid; d) studies; e) work; f) work during the vacation period (summer job); g) religious activities; h) volunteer service; i) investment; j) activities with economic, scientific, technology and cultural relevance; and k) family reunion.
It is possible to notice that there are no provisions about permanent visas reason why it remains only temporary visas.    
 
For corporate purposes, it is possible to emphasize the existence of the following temporary visas: a) student visa; b) work visa; c) investor visa; and d) manager visa.
 
In relation to the work visa, specifically, it remains the traditional division: it may be granted to the worker with or without labor relationship in Brazil.
 
With the purpose of fomenting the Brazilian market and getting specialized manpower, the Decree innovated in providing the possibility that a future act from the Federal Government: a) allows granting work visa upon document that proves graduation or equivalent diploma in the hypothesis of strategic professional capacities to the country; and b) stablishes simplified conditions to grant work visa aiming to attract manpower to fields that are strategic to the national development or that are in deficit of professionals. 
 
Residence authorization: 
 
In parallel to the provisions about temporary visas, the Decree foresees the possibility to grant residence authorization. This is an administrative act that, once accomplished the legal requirements, may enable the regularization of foreign nationals directly in Brazil without the necessity to involve the Brazilian Consulate abroad. 
 
The Decree foresees that: a) the immigrant, the resident border and the visitor, upon requirement, may require residence authorization in the country; and b) the visitor visa may be transformed (converted) into residence authorization, in the Brazilian territory, provided that the visitant fulfill the legal requirements. This, in practice, will allow that those who are in Brazil for the performance of activities such as tourism or business require their residence authorization while they are in Brazil.  
 
It also provides the possibility to grant residence authorization for an undetermined period to execute a job position, function or assignment when Brazilian legislation requires so.
 
This is an important innovation of the Migration Law that is now regulated by the Decree, considering that it was only in exceptional situations or under international agreements that the regularization of foreign nationals was allowed in Brazil - in most of the situations, it was necessary to the foreign national to leave Brazil in order to get the visa before the Brazilian Consulate abroad.
 
The residence authorization may be granted in the same cases as for temporary visas, ie: a) research, teaching or academic extension; b) health treatment; c) humanitarian aid; d) studies; e) work; f) work during vacation period (summer job); g) religious activities; h) voluntary service; i) investment; j) activities with economic, social, scientific, technological or cultural relevance; or k) family reunion.
 
Registration at Federal Police:
 
The obligation of registration before the Federal Police was maintained. This is a formality by which the foreign national informs to the Federal Police that he/she will reside in Brazil and for which he/she will receive an identity card for foreigners, now called "National Migration Register Card" (CRNM), replacing the old designation of "National Registry of Foreigners "(RNE).
 
The timeframes for registration are as follows: a) 90 days for the holder of a temporary visa; or b) 30 days for those who require a residence authorization and obtain its approval. In both cases, noncompliance with these deadlines will result in a fine.
 
Penalties and Fines:
 
There are two types of penalties: a) penalties for the natural person; and b) penalties for the legal entity.
 
In case of natural person, the penalties may vary from R$ 1.000,00 (one thousand reais) to R$ 10.000,00 (ten thousand reais) per infraction. On the other hand, for legal entity, the penalties may vary  from R$ 10.000,00 (ten thousand reais) to R $ 1.000.000,00 (one million reais). In both situations, there may be a multiplication of these amounts by 2 (two) to 5 (five) times depending on the number of repeated infractions.
 
It may be noted that the Migration Law and the Decree that regulates it represent a mark in to the Brazilian immigration legislation and offer a variety of alternatives in favor of foreign nationals who intend to stay in Brazil, either to establish a residence in the country or simply for a short period of stay.
 
On the other hand, more severe penalties may be charged in cases of noncompliance with immigration legislation, which could represent risks of "compliance" and damage to the Corporate image involved in the hiring of foreign nationals in Brazil.
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CUSTOMER SERVICE
An open channel for suggestions, criticism and praise.
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Phone.: +55 11 3405-7800

R. Luis Coelho, 308 - Térreo
São Paulo / SP - Consolação - 01309-000
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