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28 March 2014
On February 18 2014 the National Immigration Council published a new Normative Resolution (108/2014) that introduces important rules regarding family reunion immigration issues and visa requests based on civil unions (ie, between unmarried partners, including same-sex partners).
According to the new resolution, the competence for granting visas based on a civil union has shifted from the council to Brazilian consulates abroad. Applications for civil unions therefore no longer need to be filed with the council.
Moreover, the Ministry of Justice now has the competence to grant residence, both temporary and permanent, in relation to applications based on family reunions, including civil union relationships. Under the former rule, the competence for granting temporary residence lay exclusively with Brazilian consulates outside of Brazil, not the Ministry of Justice. Similarly, it was not possible for the Ministry of Justice to grant residence directly based on civil unions.
The new resolution also provides that only children under the age of 18 years are considered dependants. Under the former rule, children under the age of 21 years could obtain dependant visas based on family reunions (ie, in order to join an immediate family member that is a Brazilian citizen or holds a Brazilian permanent visa).
Furthermore, the new resolution states that the issue of visas based on family reunions for people who do not have the ability to support themselves will now be restricted to situations in which the applicants can prove, by means of a court decision or a document from the competent government body in the country of residence, that they cannot support themselves.
With respect to the documentation needed to prove a civil union, the new resolution establishes that a birth certificate for a common child of the partners to a civil union is now considered a relevant document for proving that a relationship exists between unmarried partners. Previously, such birth certificates were not accepted as proof of a civil union.
The new resolution also sets out the general documents that Brazilian consulates abroad should request and analyse for visa applications based on family reunions and civil unions. However, both the Ministry of Justice and the Brazilian consulates abroad have the power to request additional documentation should they consider this necessary.
The new resolution revokes Normative Resolutions 36/1999 and 77/2008, and is hence now the only resolution that regulates visas for family reunions and civil unions. The new rules took effect on March 20 2014.
For further information on this topic please contact Renê Ramos or Guilherme Dias at EMDOC by telephone (+55 11 3405 7800), fax (+55 11 3405 7868) or email (email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org). The EMDOC website can be accessed at www.emdoc.com.
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