after receiving the permanent visa from a consulate abroad

Hello! I am in the process of applying for a permanent visa based on a stable union. I submitted all my documents to the MTE in May and my case is in analysis, but all documents were accepted and I am quite certain I will get the visa. I elected to pick up the visa in Tokyo where I now live and work. My question is about what I should do when I have the visa in my passport. I understand I next have to visit the Federal Police in Brazil. Well, I plan on visiting Brazil next May to do that. I heard I have to make an appointment to register, and there can be a six-month waiting list just for an appointment? Is this true? Does anyone know what documents I need to submit when I register? Also, I actually plan to work in Japan for 2 or 3 more years (I am trying to save money to build a house in Minas, where my partner lives). I understand I can stay out of Brazil only for two years with a permanent visa. Is this true? Thank you for your help!

Hi Skylarker,

As far as I know, if the permanent visa requirements are anywhere near the same as other visas you are required to enter Brazil within 90 days of the visa being issued or it is no longer valid. Please check that out with the Brazilian Consulate or Embassy nearest you to make sure.

Once a foreigner receives permanent resident status it in not permitted to be outside of the country for more than two years or the permanent visa is revoked. A permanent visa in that sense IS NOT PERMANENT. The only exception to the two year rule is if you can prove that the absence extended beyond two years for reasons beyond control (força maior) and that is extremely difficult to do.

Yes, once you get your permanent visa you must come to Brazil and register with the Federal Police to obtain your CIE Carteira de Identidade Estrangeiro foreigner ID card. That you can schedule the appointment online, but there is no long waiting period as you think. The law requires you to register within 30 days of arrival in Brazil in fact.

You can find a complete list of the documents you need to register with the Federal Police for your CIE/RNE by clicking the link below. … strangeiro

William James Woodward, Brazil Animator, Expat-blog

Thank you for your reply. I really appreciate it. I just found out today that my request for permanent visa (based on a stable union) was approved. I will pick it up at the consulate in Tokyo. I was wondering if you knew how long I can keep the approval at the consulate. Due to work in Japan, I can't go to Brazil to register with the Federal Police until the beginning of May. And I think I have 90 days to enter Brazil once the stamp from the consulate is in my passport (but I have heard the 90-day limitation is only for some nationalities--I am American and there is not supposed to be a 90-day limit based on reciprocity for Brazilians with American visas). But just in case,  I should go to the consulate in February--but can I put off going to pick up the visa for 5 months (now until Feb)?

Also, when I register in Brazil and apply for the CIE, should I expect a home visit? And can a proxy (my partner) pick up the CIE if it is approved when I am back in Japan? I realize my questions are really out there and I should be contacting the officials at the proper agencies, but with the strike it is so hard to get any answers.

Thank you again!

Hi Skylarker,

As far as I know there is no exemption to the 90 day rule, it is my understanding that if more than 90 days elapse the visa is no longer considered valid. You really should contact the consulate for the definitive answer. I'm sure that they will really want to know why it is if you are seeking permanency in Brazil you are not prepared to come to the country. This could score points against you 'big time'. The visa clearly states that 'first entry must be made within 90 days' - that means 90 days from the date the visa is issued, not the date you get around to picking it up. Be careful!

The CIE must be applied for in person since they require your fingerprints, photograph, etc. When the identity card is finally ready (takes forever) you must pick it up in person and surrender the original protocol for the process. No third party can pick it up for you, not even a lawyer.

Yes, generally the Federal Police will make a home visit to confirm that a couple really exists. They might go so far as to look in closets, ask for utility bills that can establish both as residents at the address, they will even canvass neighbors to see that you are publicly living as a couple. This is standard procedure. Nothing slips by them, you can't fudge it... they are quite experienced in cases of 'marriages of convenience' or people who claim to have a common-law relationship in an attempt to obtain permanency. They are sometimes quite skeptical and look on every situation as a sham trying to beat the system.

While I can understand your desire to remain in Japan working, you could be putting the whole permanency process in jeopardy by doing so. You could lose permanent status and be required to start all over from scratch. You really need to ask yourself is it really worth that?

I can only tell you that if it were me, work or no, I would come to Brazil ASAP if for no other reason than to avoid future problems and having to go through all that bureaucracy all over again.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog

Thanks for your quick reply. I keep checking around various Brazilian consulates' websites, and all of them DO state that one must enter Brazil within 90 days IF one is a citizen of certain  countries (due to reciprocity). Then the countries are listed and the USA is NOT among them. I will check with the consulate in Tokyo to be sure. I don't want to lose my visa--gathering all the documents was incredibly time-consuming and expensive....but on another forum I asked this same question and I received the response that if I can't enter Brazil within the time frame, all is not lost: I can apply to have the permanent visa re-published (without doing the paperwork again.) But I know this is a risk: I know no one who has been in my situation who can definitively tell me what happened to them. I need more information and I need to make a careful decision. Thanks again!

Hi Skylarker,

I think you will find that the list of countries you are talking about is the list of countries that are exempt from the requirement of a tourist visa to enter Brazil.

I really have to wonder what is more important to you, your permanency or working? I just can't understand why after having gone through all of this you would risk losing everything and having to start from square one. I have never heard of having one's permanent visa simply re´published as you call it and I would not take the chance your information was wrong if I were you.

Just a question... is your partner there in Japan with you or here in Brazil right now? I really can't see how it can be considered a 'união estável' if you are physically separated and plan to remain that way for the foreseeable future. You do know that even once you have the permanent visa if you are outside Brazil for more than 2 years you lose the permanent status, don't you? I'm sorry to sound so critical of your situation but it appears to me that you really aren't too serious about coming here in the first place. I can't imagine being separated from my life partner, the one I love for two or three years just for the sake of money, nor can I imagine a life partner who would tolerate taking second place to 'the almighty buck'.

Sorry to be rude, but it sounds to me like you should forget about permanency in Brazil and try again later when you finally get your s____ together.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog

Thanks for your reply. Well, unfortunately, life happens and s____ gets "un-together." I didn't want to leave Brazil or my partner--especially in the midst of applying for a permanent visa--but for financial reasons I had to. I truly hope you never have to face financial hardship that requires you to leave a loved one. You are quite lucky that as you say, you can't even imagine it. My story is hardly extraordinary-- how many thousands of  couples are separated due to jobs. I guess many of us are chasing that almighty buck, putting our partners in second place, as you so sensitively put it.

I am happy I was approved and, just to be on the safe side, I will visit Brazil in December to register at the federal police. But, the list of countries I mentioned was NOT about being exempt from the requirement of tourist visas. It was about being exempt from the requirement of entering within 90 days once a visa is issued. I first saw this list on the webpage of the London Brazilian consulate. This webpage has a separate section explaining the permanent visa based on the stable union. I highly recommend anyone thinking about applying for the stable union visa to read this website-- it was one of the best resources for requirements I have found.

Other things to note (in case other people applying for the stable union visa are reading this post and replies): I just found out that if you apply for the permanent visa directly through the MTE (as opposed through the Federal Police) there will NOT be a home visit. The visa has already been granted. For anyone interested in my process: It took 4 months to receive the approval. I did NOT need to submit a birth certificate, a federal background check from the USA (although just in case I submitted a state background check), nor proof of wages from my partner. (He did have to get a document that promises he will financially maintain me, easily obtainable at the cartorio). I submitted an authenticated and translated copy of my passport (every page), and most importantly, 3 documents that prove a stable relationship with my partner (easy for us because we have land together in Brazil, a joint Bank of Brazil account, and a civil union from Vermont in the USA). We did not submit sworn statements from reliable witnesses. We used a checklist we obtained from the immigration office in Sao Paulo. We were missing one document--actually it was a kind of application fee ( not expensive--something like 38 reais ...and I can't remember the number of the document but the form was on the CNIG website--printable and easily payable at the bank). The checklist didn't mention this fee, which makes me think that the requirements and rules might often change for this type of visa.

I know I am in a situation where I will have to return to Brazil to register at the Federal Police, and then return again to pick up my CIE. I also know I can only stay out of Brazil for 2 years. That's exactly how long I will stay in Japan.

One final note about getting information from forums: much is helpful, but so much can send your head spinning. For example, I needed to change the consulate from which I would pick up my visa, from New York to Tokyo. I inquired on a forum (not this one) if it would be possible to change, and I got answers warning me not to: it will confuse the process, cause it to get lost in the shuffle, blah blah blah. One person did respond saying it wouldn't be a problem. And it wasn't. I even received an email from somebody at the MTE telling me they received my request and would change it.

Regarding my current situation, it is much the same--a mix of you are in deep s___ if you get the timing wrong and no problem. However, this time more responses (on another forum) tell me that it IS possible to have the visa re-instated (or re-published, not my words, someone  who responded). I know I have to time everything very carefully. And I will. I am quite serious about this visa, despite what you wrote in your previous response.

Hi again Skylarker,

Thanks for the information on the 'stable union' process and the website, it will certainly be of great help.

Yes, I agree with you 100% a lot of the information you will get in some forums is pure garbage. That is why I make a concerted effort to check my sources before giving advice. When somebody lets me know about something new or changes I follow up on the information ASAP so I can keep up to date.

You were quite fortunate that you have a paper trail and joint assets to prove the relationship so that part was never really in dispute. I now see that in fact the citizens of some countries are permitted to make first entry up to one year from the date of issue of their permanent visa, this is something that is completely new to me.

Yes, I have often heard that the permanency process through the MTE is much more relaxed and quicker, especially in 'stable union' applications. At least they don't seem to be so overworked as the Federal Police or maybe they are just more efficient, who knows?

Life has many twists and turns and throws us some pretty nasty surprises from time-to-time. Your situation is certainly one of those. Good luck in realizing your future plans. Please keep us posted on your progress. We really are all rooting for every expat facing difficulties.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog

I have been researching and inquiring like a madman about the amount of time one has to enter Brazil when a permanent visa has been stamped in the passport. I am an American, so I have been searching the website of every Brazilian consulate in the USA for the answer (and sending emails as well). I found the answer on the website of the consulate in San Francisco: Americans have 6 months to enter Brazil. Again, this is with a permanent visa; I am not sure about a tourist visa. That might be the usual 90 days.

My next endeavor is to find out how long the Brazilian consulate abroad will keep the authorization that a permanent visa has been approved by the MTE in Brasilia. I heard 6 months, I heard a year, but I would like to find a definitive answer. I hope my emails will be answered.



I would like to interject. Unfortunately, I don't have any answers to your questions, however, I hope that you have everything settled with your situation to enter Brazil in a timely fashion.

I was intrigued by your posts because I've not heard one account of anyone doing the process from abroad and also the fact that you are not living in your country of origin, albeit it seems you started the process while being there.

I'm an American but have been an expat in Switzerland for the last 6 years. I have been living with my Brazilian partner here since 2008. In 2012, we finally decided to enter in a Civil Union, which is official here. My question to you is to whether you think it is an issue that I am an American outside of his country of origin and doing the process from there? I mention this because all my supporting documents will be from here because I have my life here, i.e.:

Registered civil union in the Swiss civil status registry
Background check/criminal record from Switzerland
Declared statement that I am single in the U.S. and thus able to be in a civil union (sworn at the U.S. Consulate) Is this the right statement to make because in my home state civil union's are not recognized and thus I am single??

Do you think they will raise an issue because the documents are not from my country of origin, i.e. the USA, but unfortunately I'm not there to do all these documents and my life is here in Switzerland?

Also, do you think in addition to normal documents I should submit a supporting document-- a certificate of residence showing how long I have been living in Switzerland?

Thanks much in advance for your help. Thank you too for your posts and for providing reliable, relevant information in a clear fashion.

All the best

Hi lekkerbezig > this is an old thread. I see that you have a similar post HERE.

Indeed I did originally respond to an old post because I had some questions directed to the author skylaker. I thought if I responded to her post, that it would send her an email and maybe she could shed some light on the process. In addition, I started a new post for others as I found it pertinent to have a post about applying for a VIPER through civil union from ABROAD and not in BRAZIL.

Should I apply for a visa at home now before I get to Rio? .

Hi Charles,

That depends on the kind of visa, basis on which you apply, and other factors.

Start a new topic with that and some mor information and I will give you as many answers as possible.  Cheers,
  William James Woodward – Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

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