What is the change? Government offices will close in India, Singapore and a number of other countries this week to celebrate the Hindu holiday of Diwali.

What does the change mean? Employers and foreign nationals who need government services should prepare for holiday-related delays.

  • Implementation time frame:On and around Nov. 10 and 11. Government closures will vary from country to country and will range from one to four days.
  • Visas/permits affected: All visas, permits and other immigration services.
  • Who is affected: Anyone needing to obtain visas, work permits, renewals or other immigration-related services.
  • Impact on processing times: Delays should be expected due to office closures, and backlogs are possible when offices reopen.
  • Business Impact: Holiday delays may have a minor impact on business schedules.

Background: Diwali, also called Deepavali, is the Hindu festival of lights, celebrating the triumph of good over evil. It is a public holiday in Fiji, Guyana, India, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. Dates of closures vary from country to country. The holiday lasts four days (Nov. 10-13) in India, while Singapore and some other countries will celebrate the holiday this year on Tuesday, Nov. 10.

BAL Analysis: Companies and foreign employees should check with their BAL attorney or local officials on the dates of office closures.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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