Virginia, US


If your company is sending employees to Ecuador—Fragomen is here to help. Working closely with our Local Advisors in Ecuador, we provide the immigration strategies and support you need to get your employees on the ground as quickly as possible. 

Ecuadorian law provides many solutions to help employers of foreign nationals.  Requirements, processing times, employment eligibility, and benefits for accompanying family members vary by visa classification.

Per a February 2017 immigration law, the 12-IX Acts of Commerce visa is no longer available, and authorities have not established the applicable visa for business travelers. Trips to Ecuador should be postponed, if possible, until the corresponding regulations are released at the end of February, as they will clarify this point. Where travel is necessary, the foreign national would have to enter the country as tourist visitor.

A work permit, or 12-VI work visa, is granted for either one or two years, permits multiple entries and can be extended provided that the foreign national reapplies for the visa and fulfills all requirements. After holding three successive 12-VI visas, the foreign national is eligible to apply for a permanent visa (9-IV visa by indefinite contract).

Note that as of January 2015, foreign nationals have 72 hours from the date indicated in the filing receipt to submit their passport for visa stamping. Those who do not meet this deadline will have to resubmit their visa application and all required documents. Due to the rule change, foreign nationals should either remain in Ecuador once a visa application has been filed until the visa is stamped in the passport, or be in Ecuador by the estimated approval date recorded on the filing receipt.

Detailed Immigration Snapshots, Document Lists and Process Guides are available to clients on request.