What is the change? The Brazilian Ministry of Labor will accept a broader range of documents as proof of work experience from foreigners applying for Work Visas. The Ministry will now accept any documents that provide proof of work experience. In addition, for intracompany transfers, the ministry will accept signed letters from Brazilian company directors confirming visa applicants’ minimum years of experience in lieu of reference letters from foreign employers.

What does the change mean? These changes eliminate a time-consuming and expensive procedure used to prove work experience. Previously, applicants were required to contact the foreign company to obtain proof of experience that had to be translated and legalized by a Brazilian consulate.

  • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: Temporary Work Visas that require proof of professional experience from applicants (Normative Resolutions # 61 and 99).
  • Who is affected: Foreign employees applying for Temporary Work Visas.
  • Impact on processing times: The changes will simplify the document requirements for the processing of Work Visa applications.
  • Next steps: When transferring an employee to a Brazilian affiliate or a foreign company, the Brazilian company can opt to use this benefit and avoid the lengthy process of obtaining a legalized and translated letter of experience issued by the foreign company.

Background: Previously, the Brazilian Ministry of Labor demanded that foreign Temporary Work Visa applicants obtain a letter of experience from the former employer, even if the applicant no longer worked for that employer. This requirement caused problems for some candidates who no longer were in contact with their former employer or did not feel comfortable seeking a reference from a former employer. This requirement is no longer necessary if the applicant is being transferred within affiliated companies of the same corporate group. Also, all applicants for Temporary Work Visas may now present other documents as proof of their tenure at a company, such as work contracts or pay slips. The ministry will accept these documents as proof of the minimum experience required to qualify for a Brazilian Work Visa.

BAL Analysis: These changes allow greater flexibility for Work Visa applicants and demonstrate that Brazil is reviewing and remodeling its laws and regulations to better respond to market demand.

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

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