Belize employment visas
Foreign professionals who would like to live and work in Belize must obtain a work permit from the Belize Ministry of Labour prior to moving to the country. A foreign national may be granted a residence visa approval in Belize if they i) secure employment with a local company or ii) incorporate a company in Belize for self-employment. Foreign individuals traveling to Belize for business visits or tourism purposes will also be granter short term visit visas.
- Foreigners relocating to Belize to either i) establish a company and manage their business locally or ii) seek employment in Belize must apply for a work permit;
- This permit is only valid for one year and is not automatically renewable meaning the concerned individual looking to maintain residency must submit new applications each year end;
- Entrepreneurs with businesses must provide i) copy of passport ii) business trade license iii) passport sized photograph iv) recent bank statements and v) a recommendation from the Town Board where the business is located;
- Foreign nationals seeking employment must provide i) an employment offer letter ii) sponsor letter from employer iii) academic qualifications iv) three job advertisement clippings in local newspaper and v) a police record from Belize and previous place of residence;
- The work permit approval process takes at least 2 to 3 months. When a work permit is issued for the second year, an applicant is qualified to apply for a Belize permanent residence permit.
Permanent residence permit
- Foreign workers, business owners and directors or tourists who have lived in Belize for at least 1 year are qualified to apply for permanent residency in Belize;
- During the 1 year period, the individual must have legally resided in Belize and not left the country for more than 12 consecutive days;
- Once approved, this visa allows foreign nationals to live and work in Belize for the long-term unless the individual gets involved in certain illegal activities such as trafficking of antiquities whereby the visa will be revoked;
- The requirements to submit an application include i) a police background check ii) a medical fitness report and iii) letter of financial support from a local sponsor or bank statement.
- This visa may be granted to foreign nationals looking to visit Belize for a number of reasons including i) tourism purposes ii) business visit iii) temporary employment and iv) study;
- The visit visa can either be i) single entry – valid for only 6 months or ii) multiple entry visa – valid for 12 months. Most countries do not require a visa to visit Belize and depending on country, can stay from 1 to 6 months visa free;
- Foreign nationals requiring a visit visa must first submit an application for the same with the local embassy or consulate in their country of residence;
- The documents required for an application include i) copy of passport ii) employment letter or business trade license (if applicable) iii) police record from country of origin iv) recent bank statements and v) security clearance (for certain countries of interest).