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WORK VISA

HOW TO APPLY FOR A WORK VISA IN COLOMBIA?

The M – Worker visa is the authorization granted to a foreign citizen for the entry, stay and work permit so that the holder can provide paid services or work within the national territory. The work permit may be specific as to the work and entity where the foreign citizen carries out his/her activities.

The holder of a work visa is the person on whom all the benefits and obligations derived from a visa apply. The visa to work in Colombia falls under the category of Migrant Visa Type M with the name of “worker”.

Main requirement of visa M- Worker.

If you intend to work and live in the country, you must take into account that the main requirement to apply for your Colombian Work visa is to have a signed labor contract with a legal company domiciled in Colombia (a labor offer).

According to your profession and the position you are going to perform in the hiring company, you can apply for your work visa at the Colombian consulate of your country or at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bogota. The most important and difficult thing is to get an Employment Contract. This way you will be able to apply for your visa, otherwise you must wait until you get an employment opportunity.

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS TO HIRE FOREIGN PERSONNEL.

  • The company must be incorporated in Colombia.
  • It must have an average monthly turnover of 100,000,000 Million Pesos per month in the last six months.
  • Demonstrate that the activity carried out by the applicant is fundamental and of national interest.
  • Certificate of the Chamber of Commerce in force.
  • It is the responsibility of the Contracting Company and the Foreigner to verify and ensure that he/she complies with the laws and legal requirements to work in this country.

In the case of visas that grant authorization to work, both the foreigner and the employer or contractor must comply with the labor regulations of the Colombian state, with the specific regulations for the exercise of each profession or trade and with the obligations regarding reporting and registration established in the Colombian immigration law.

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How much does a work visa cost in Colombia?

How much does this visa cost? The cost of the visa is US$52. It is paid in Colombian pesos at the current exchange rate. The visa issuance costs US$230.
WORK VISA AS BENEFICIARY

If you enter with your family and you have been granted an M-Type Work Visa.  You are entitled to apply for Beneficiary Work Visas for the members of your family (mother, spouse and children under 25 years of age), which will allow your family members to stay in a legal manner.

It should be noted that this type of visa does not allow family members to work, only the holder who has the employment contract may perform professional work.

WORK VISA REQUIREMENTS AS BENEFICIARY.

  • In the case of children under 25 years of age, a birth certificate apostilled or legalized according to the country of origin.
  • In the case of the Spouse, Marriage Certificate apostilled or legalized according to the country of origin.
  • In the case of the visa holder’s parents (grandparents), apostilled or legalized birth certificate of the Work visa holder.
  • Remember that for your visa application, your passport must be valid for more than 180 days and have two blank pages.
  • The permanence of the foreigner holder of this visa will be the total of its validity, with multiple entries and exits.
  • Copy of the page of the passport where the last Colombian visa or entry stamp to Colombia has been stamped, as the case may be.
  • All the necessary documents for the granting of this kind of visa, in Colombia or abroad, must be legalized or apostilled, as the case may be, and converted by an official translator into Spanish, if they are in a different language.
  • Within the following fifteen (15) calendar days, counted from the date the foreigner entered the country or from the date of issuance of the visa, if it was issued in national territory; or within fifteen (15) days following the entry into Colombia, if the visa was issued at a Consulate, must be registered in the registry of foreigners of the Special Administrative Unit of Migration Colombia.
  • Any inaccuracy in the data contained in the visa application shall be cause for inadmissibility, denial or cancellation of the visa.
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MORE WORK VISAS IN COLOMBIA

The Work Visa Type – M, is not the only visa that allows you to work legally in Colombia, there are other immigration options such as the ones below:

VISITOR VISA TYPE – V.

As a Temporary Service Provider, with a validity of one (1) to six (6) months, this type of visa is aimed at companies with specific projects, which require the support of foreign personnel to perform technical work for a short period of time. It must be taken into account that the Visitor Visa Type – V and the Work Visa Type – M, will always be associated to a company in the country, in case the expatriate changes his/her employee, he/she must inform Migración Colombia of his/her situation immediately.

INTRACORPORATE TRANSFER VISA:

With Validity from six months to one year (1), this visa is directed to Expatriates who transfer from their company (head office) abroad to a branch office in Colombia (salary paid abroad).

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If the foreign citizen has a profession regulated by the National Government, such as Engineering, Medicine or Law, etc. In addition to their Colombian visa, it is necessary and mandatory to obtain a Temporary Work Permit from the corresponding professional council, or to validate their professional title before the Ministry of National Education, otherwise they will be exposed to economic sanctions due to the strict compliance with the Colombian immigration laws.

MR. ENTREPRENEUR.

Any legal company that links, hires, employs or admits a foreigner through any modality, especially, labor, cooperative or civil relationship that generates a benefit, must require the presentation of the visa that allows the foreigner to develop the activity, occupation or trade declared in the visa application, and must also request the foreigner to present the alien identification card when it is in the obligation to process it in compliance with the immigration requirements.

Initially, a foreigner may remain in Colombia as a tourist for a period not exceeding 180 days, while the corresponding work visa is being processed. If the 180 days as a tourist expire without the foreigner having obtained a job offer, the expatriate will be in irregular stay and must leave the country.

When the applicant for this type of visa does not prove full compliance with the requirements, its approval will be at the discretion of the Internal Working Group on Visas and Immigration, taking into account the credibility and sufficiency of the documents presented by the applicant, the window or the national interest.

It is a discretionary competence of the National Government, based on the principle of State sovereignty, to authorize the entry, stay and departure of foreigners from the national territory. This means that the granting, denial and authorization of visas in Colombia will be the responsibility of the public servants in the country that grant, admit, deny or authorize them.
If you have entered Colombia and your objective is to reside temporarily or definitively to work with a company; with the help of our immigration specialists it is possible to obtain a work visa Type – M in the country successfully.

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