• Visa Processing and Document Legalization Suspended Due to Public Worker Strike
  • June 22, 2012
  • Law Firm: Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen Loewy LLP - New York Office
  • A strike by Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) workers has led to a suspension of visa processing and document legalization procedures, both in Brazil and at many consular posts worldwide.

    In Brazil, the striking MFA workers have suspended all local document legalization procedures. They have also stopped forwarding visa pre-approvals to consular posts for issuance to individual applicants.

    Overseas, it is within each individual consular post’s discretion whether to participate in the strike. Reports indicate that currently more than 50 consular posts worldwide, including many in Australia, Europe, and the United States, are not accepting or adjudicating visa applications. Additional posts could join in the strike at any time. Some consular posts are making an exception for official and press visa applications requested for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio + 20), to be held in Rio de Janeiro from June 20 to 22.

    Immigration processing will likely remain fluid until the strike ends. At this time, there is no indication how long the strike will last. It could expand to workers at other government agencies, though there have been no confirmed reports that this has occurred yet.

    After the strike ends, lengthy processing delays are expected for employers and their foreign workers, due to visa and legalization application backlogs that will develop during the strike.