Delays persist in Venezuela

24 Apr 17



What is the change? Antigovernment protests and unexpected office closures have hampered already unpredictable immigration processes in Venezuela.

What does the change mean? All services are affected and processing times vary widely, both for foreign nationals seeking work authorization in Venezuela and for Venezuelan nationals or residents in need of criminal background checks or other services in Venezuela. Consular authorities and Ministry of Foreign Affairs offices are also experiencing delays in service as demonstrations have disrupted roads, traffic and public transportation.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate and ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: All visas, permits, consular and diplomatic services.
  • Who is affected: Foreign nationals seeking work authorization or other immigration-related services in Venezuela.
  • Impact on processing times: Processing times vary fairly dramatically, even in cases where applications are properly filed with all appropriate supporting documentation.
  • Business impact: Businesses may need to adjust start dates and timelines because of the delays.

Background: Processing times vary widely depending on a number of factors and may be exacerbated by frequent personnel changes or unexpected closures. Based on the best information BAL is able to obtain, the current processing times are approximately:

  • Work permits: 30 days.
  • Legalizations: 40 to 60 days.
  • Apostillizations: 120 days.
  • Criminal background checks: four days.

Antigovernment protests have continued over the past couple of weeks, further throwing processing times into flex. Even when open, government offices usually close at noon, further limiting the ability to obtain services.

BAL Analysis: Businesses should plan as far in advance as possible and factor in delays that could arise due to unexpected circumstances.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Venezuela. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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