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Brazil Relaxes Visa Process for Visitors

Posted on the 02 September 2014 by Angelicolaw @AngelicoLaw

On May 6, 2014, President Dilma Rousseff and the National Congress published law no. 12.968, which relaxed the visa process for certain travelers and introduced an electronic visa application system. This new law is a significant modification of Brazilian immigration law no. 6815/80.

Under the former law, anyone seeking a temporary business, tourist, artist, or athlete visa was required to apply for their visa through a Brazilian embassy or consulate before traveling to Brazil. The new process eases that requirement. Now, these travelers can use a new electronic application system to apply for their visas.

It is important to note that this process will only be available to citizens of countries that enter into a specific agreement with Brazil or that offer the same treatment to Brazilian visa applicants.

Some visas to travel to Brazil can take 30 days or more to process. During peak travel seasons it can take even longer. The new system is expected to shorten visa processing time considerably.

This faster electronic processing will make it easier for tourists, entertainers, and athletes to visit Brazil. Another impact of electronic processing is that it will help facilitate international business dealings. By removing some of the red tape and streamlining the steps required for business travelers to obtain visas, Brazil is taking an important step toward reducing the bureaucracy that is slowing the pace of foreign investment.

Although the new law went into effect immediately, there is almost no indication that the process is available for use. The website for the Consulate General of Brazil located in Washington, DC makes no mention of the new process and does not provide a link to the electronic application.

If you are planning a trip to Brazil and you require one of the eligible visa categories, contact the Brazilian embassy or consulate in your country for more information about the electronic application system. It is expected that the Ministry of External Relations will issue detailed rules and procedures in the near future.

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