Colombia – How to obtain a TP-4 Work Visa
Since March 2016, the Columbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been requesting additional application documents when applying for a TP-4 temporary work visa and beneficiary visas for dependents.
Which additional documents are required?
• For initial TP-4 temporary work visa application a local employment contract
• For T-4 visa renewals an employment certification is required which will be issued by the Colombian company
• For beneficiary visas for spouses or children marriage certificates as well as birth certificate are required and legalized within three months of the visa application.
Employers in Columbia should be ready to submit these additional documents to avoid delays with the application process.
Foreign nationals who engage in any work activities in Colombia should obtain a “visa de trabajo”, TP-4 Visa. The TP-4 Visa serves as an entry visa as well as a work permit. The TP-4 Visas is a multiple entries visa. The initial validity is usually up to three years, and can be renewed indefinitely.
Upon approval of the TP-4 visa, the assignee has to enter the country within 60 days. Within 15 days from arrival in Columbia a local registration process with the Special Administrative Unit Migration Columbia After arrival in Columbia is required to apply for the foreign identification card (cédula).
Visa Types Columbia
Colombia has many types of visas. If you are a national of a country which is not eligible for a visa waiver, or if you are planning on working and living in Colombia for more than three to six months, only a few visa categories apply.
The most common visa types under Colombian immigration law can be defined as following:
- NE - business visas
- TP - temporary visas, and
- RE - resident visas
Business Visa (NE1)
Business Visa (NE1) Foreign nationals travelling to Colombia for business purpose of up to 180 days require either a NE-1 Business Visa or a Permiso de Ingreso y Permanencia, i.e. an Entry Permit. Business Visas are required for all visa nationals, permit stays of up to one year per entry. The Business Visa can be obtained at any Colombian Consular Mission abroad prior to entry, or alternatively in-country following entry in tourist status.
Click here for further information.
Temporary Visas (TP)
This is the most common visa category for delegates or assignees for temporary assignments to Columbia. There are 13 different TP Temporary Visa categories + 1 category for nationals who would fall under the Mercosur agreement. Some professions are regulated (e.g. biology, engineering, law, medicine etc).
For these type of regulated professions, the TP-4 visa will usually be granted, however an additional work permit is required and has to be applied from the respective authorities before taking up work.
Residence Visas (RE)
In case the assignee can proof five year of continuous, uninterrupted residence in Columbia under the TP-4 Visa, he/she can apply for a local residence visa. In this case, the TP-4 Visa will expire and become void once the assignee leaves and remains outside of Colombia for more than 180 consecutive days.