Virginia, US

Jul 29 2020

12-Month Remote Work Visa Introduced

Barbados

At a Glance

  • The Welcome Stamp Visa allows foreign nationals to relocate to and work remotely from Barbados for up to 12 months.
  • The visa does not allow work for a local employer in Barbados.
  • Applicants must certify that they expect to earn an income of at least USD 50,000 over the next 12 months or have the means to support themselves and their family during their stay in Barbados.
  • Interested applicants can now complete and submit the application online.

The situation

According to the Barbados government’s website, Barbados has introduced a 12-Month Welcome Stamp Visa, which allows foreign nationals to relocate to and work remotely from Barbados for up to 12 months initially.

A closer look

According to the visa application form, applicants must certify that they expect to earn an income of at least USD 50,000 over the next 12 months or have the means to support themselves and their family during their stay in Barbados.

Impact

  • Working remotely. The visa offers foreign nationals the option to reside and work remotely from Barbados for 12 months, whereas other work authorization options in Barbados do not allow remote work.
  • Local work not allowed. Visa holders or their dependents cannot perform work for a local employer in Barbados or provide any services to any person or entity carrying out business in Barbados.
  • Employers should assess compliance risks. As remote work programs are developed during COVID-19 and beyond, it remains increasingly important for employers to analyze strategies and assess risks associated with implementing and/or continuing remote work policies (both in the home and host countries) with a trusted immigration partner since such programs are relatively new, subject to change and can create compliance risks for employers and employees alike.

 

Background

Considering the challenges COVID-19 has presented to countries that depend on travel and tourism (including necessary COVID-19 testing and quarantine requirements), and its impact to short-term travel, the government of Barbados seeks to attract visitors and remote workers to stay in the country for longer terms, and boost economic activity within the country.

The initiative follows the recently-introduced Digital Nomad Visa in Estonia, which allows foreign nationals to live in Estonia while continuing to work for a foreign employer or as a freelancer.

Looking ahead

Legislation regulating this new visa is expected soon.

Remote work immigration routes remain largely unregulated in the world. As the non-traditional workforce grows and countries focus on post-COVID-19 economic remobilization, more governments will likely start to slowly adapt and update remote work policies.

Fragomen will report on related developments

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to [email protected].