What has changed?
As of May 16, 2018, a new Government Resolution (1238) was implemented in Colombia addressing criteria for compliance with immigration laws and the consequences and fines for non-compliance . Colombian employers are now required to complete a registration report in the Information System for Registration of Foreigners (SIRE) when there is a change in visa category of an employee. T he previous law did not address this obligation.
Who is affected?
All clients with foreign employees in Colombia.
What to expect
- In cases where a Colombian company fails to declare migratory status in a timely fashion or disregards said responsibility due to ignorance of the law, a modification of the sanction (exemption from payment) may be requested only within ninety (90) calendar days from the date of the infringement.
- Migration infringements categorized as moderate in the new resolution will result in a fine between eight (8) and forty (40) times the minimum legal current salary, which is very significant in comparison with the previous Law, which imposed penalties of one (1) to fifteen (15) times the minimum legal current salary.
- Middle school and high school institutions may register minors who do not have a permit or visa authorizing their stay in Colombia, without any penalty, as long as these institutions make the report via the SIRE Virtual Platform.
- In special circumstances, immigration status will be resolved for those nationals from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay, who have an irregular immigration status (ie: overstay) in Colombia and express their intention to obtain residence in Colombia.
- Under special circumstances, only a fine may be imposed and the immigration authority can commute the deportation order.
- Nationals of Ecuador are exempt from the applicable sanctions related to exceeding the authorized residence stay.
What you need to do
- When visas change or are renewed, a new registration must be performed in SIRE.
- Emigra will coordinate all the necessary steps to continue complying with this new regulation.
- Contact your Emigra Worldwide representative for further details on how these updates may impact you or your clients.