Virginia, US

Feb 19 2020

Travel Authorization No Longer Required for International Travel During Application Processing

Chile

At a Glance

  • Foreign nationals in Chile with pending initial or renewed visa or temporary residence permit applications are no longer required to obtain a travel authorization from the Immigration Department to exit the country while their visa-in-process or residence-in-process certificate is pending.
  • Instead of the travel authorization, these foreign nationals can use the original courier delivery receipt of their pending application.
  • In an additional change of policy, permanent residence applicants no longer need to obtain a travel authorization from the Immigration Department in order to leave Chile while their applications are pending. Instead, they can use the residence-in-process certificate which is now being issued immediately upon the filing of their online application.

The situation

The requirement for foreign nationals to obtain travel authorization documents prior to leaving Chile has been eliminated.

A closer look

NEW RULE DETAILS IMPACT

Visa or temporary residence permit applicants. Foreign nationals in Chile with pending initial or renewed visa or temporary residence permit applications are no longer required to obtain a travel authorization from the Immigration Department to exit the country while their visa-in-process or residence-in-process certificate is pending.

Background. Although no official policy has been released on the elimination of the travel authorization requirement which was implemented in October 2019, the government has deleted this application from their website and foreign nationals with these pending applications have been able to leave Chile with only the original courier delivery receipt of their pending application.

History. In May 2019, to reduce a four-to-five month travel delay, the Immigration Department eliminated a rule requiring foreign nationals with pending new or renewed visa or temporary residence applications to obtain a visa-in-process or residence-in-process certificate to travel abroad. In October 2019, the Immigration Department retracted this rule and implemented a travel authorization process for each trip outside of Chile until the visa-in-process or residence-in-process certificate was issued.  

  • Simpler process. Affected foreign nationals should benefit from not having to submit online documents for the travel authorization and will be able to travel more quickly as they do not have to wait one to two weeks for this document to be issued.
  • Re-entry as tourists. Affected foreign nationals traveling on an original courier delivery receipt who have not yet obtained a visa-in-process or residence-in-process certificate should be aware that they will be re-entering Chile as tourists. As such, visa nationals will be required to obtain a Tourist Visa at a consular post.

Pending permanent residence application travel rules. Foreign nationals can use the residence-in-process certificate, which is now being issued immediately upon filing their online application.

Prior rule.  Permanent residence applicants were previously required to obtain travel authorization from the Immigration Department to leave Chile while their permanent residence applications were pending.

Affected foreign nationals should benefit from not having to submit online documents for the travel authorization and will be able to travel immediately after submitting their permanent residence application.

 

Background

Foreign nationals submitting in-country immigration applications continue to experience delays that started in 2018 with the implementation of an online appointment system and further immigration processing disruptions since October 2019, caused by protests and civil unrest in the country. As a result, the government continues to take four to five months to issue visa-in-process or residence-in-process certificates (which historically took 30 to 45 days until mid-2018).

Looking ahead

As immigration processing delays are not likely to subside in the near future, Chile may continue to streamline processes to ease the challenges faced by foreign nationals and employers and alleviate administrative hurdles for the Immigration Department.

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].