Colombia tightening enforcement of local contract requirement

20 Oct 14

COLOMBIA

IMPACT – MEDIUM

What is the change? Over the past month, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has grown increasingly strict about enforcing a requirement that applicants for TP-4 Visas have either a local contract or service agreement with a Colombian sponsor.

What does the change mean? Applications for TP-4 Visas that are unsupported by either a local contract or service agreement will be rejected.

  • Implementation timeframe: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: TP-4 (Temporary Work) visas.
  • Who is affected: TP-4 visa applicants.
  • Impact on processing times: Applications could be delayed or rejected if applicants do not provide proper documentation in accordance with the local contract rule.
  • Business impact: Assignees cannot rely on a contract with a foreign employer as their sole supporting documentation for TP-4 Visas. They must establish that they have a local contract or service agreement.

Background: The TP-4 Visa is issued to foreign nationals entering Colombia under an employment relationship, contract or service agreement with a Colombian company, organization or individual. Under a 2013 order (Decree 834, Article 7) all employees must have a local contract or service agreement.

BAL Analysis: While this is not a new rule, the ministry began strictly enforcing it in the past month in an unannounced change. Applicants seeking a TP-4 Visa should be sure to have a local contract or service agreement in place before submitting applications.

Colombia is also currently requiring all visa applicants to fill out and sign questionnaires concerning travel to Ebola-affected countries, including Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria.

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

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