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BRAZIL: Normative Resolution #94, regarding professional exchange programs, published in April

Normative Resolution #94, regarding professional exchange programs, was published in April.

Recently graduated college or university students may wish to come to Brazil to gain knowledge necessary for progressing in their careers, or for cultural exchange, tourism, or professional experience. A new kind of visa, valid for one year and not extendable, is now available to foreigners, students, or recent graduates coming to Brazil to participate in professional exchange programs.

Normative Resolution #94, which sets forth the new visa's requirements, was published in the Official Gazette of April 14, 2011, as a new resolution of the National Immigration Council. For purposes of this resolution, a professional exchange includes learning as part of an international labor experience, which is performed in a work environment that promotes the exchange of knowledge and cultural professional experience.

To grant a work permit, the Ministry of Labor requires (i) proof of enrollment in graduation or post-graduation courses valid for less than one year, or a graduation certificate; (ii) a temporary part-time or full-time work contract; and (iii) a Commitment Term between the foreigner and the employer, with the participation of a Brazilian exchange entity (an entity responsible for the assistance of the trainee while in Brazil), which states the terms of the exchange.

The Ministry of Labor may reject the application (a) if there is any evidence of the company's interest in substituting foreign professionals in place of Brazilian manpower; and (b) if it is found that the same treatment is not granted to Brazilian nationals in the country of origin of the applicant.

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