What's new in global
18 June 2020
Global immigration rules are changing by the day, both in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and as a result of legislative updates across the globe.
Smith Stone Walters is here to help businesses and individuals keep on top of these developments and identify any changes that may impact your immigration goals. With this in mind, we would like to highlight the following key updates in global immigration.
Estonia: Digital Nomad Visa introduced
Alongside Costa Rica, Norway, Mexico, Portugal and the Czech Republic, Estonia has become one of the first countries in the world to create a Digital Nomad Visa.
A digital nomad is a location-independent professional who earns a living using telecommunications technologies. These individuals work remotely, often in foreign counties, rather than being physically present at a company headquarters or office.
The new Digital Nomad Visa will allow internationals working in such roles to work in Estonia. This approved amendment to the Alien Act has been implemented by the government to encourage international persons to consider Estonia as a destination to live and work.
The proposed Digital Nomad Visa programme will be implemented gradually. At first, they will target internationals who can prove that they are digital nomads, and if so they will be eligible to apply for this visa category.
A key feature of the Digital Nomad Visa is that it will grant up to a one year stay, which is nine months longer than the three month tourist visa allows.
Although this visa has only recently been introduced, the government have already estimated that around 1,800 individuals per year could be eligible. With remote working becoming the norm around the world, Estonia may be a location to look out for in the future.
Denmark: Biometric recording facilities reopen
From 8 June 2020, the Danish Immigration Service will be reopening facilities for the recording of biometric features (facial image and fingerprints), for those who have booked an appointment in advance.
In order to have your biometric data recorded you will need to contact the Immigration Service beforehand, this can be done via phone or on their website.
Appointments are granted solely for biometric data collection purposes and once you have an appointment you must appear in person at the Immigration Services Citizen Service in Maestved.
The government have advised that individuals should take precautions and follow government guidelines for COVID-19 when visiting centres.
With such services resuming it is important to book an appointment in advance to avoid further delays in the months to come.
Sri Lanka: Additional visa extensions granted
As a result of many foreign nationals being unable to successfully secure an appointment for a visa extension before the 11 June deadline; the Sri Lankan government have announced that they have extended all visas for foreigners in the country until 11 July.
The government department have reassured that all visas expiring between 7 March and 11 July 2020 will be exempt from the overstay penalty.
This additional period of time will give applicants a second opportunity to book an appointment for a visa extension. All extension appointments are made on the Department of Immigration website.
We advise individuals to secure an appointment as soon as possible and to take this time to prepare relevant documentation.
Need help to reach your global immigration goals?
Smith Stone Walters will continue to post updates on the latest global immigration news to ensure you stay informed. If you have questions about the latest changes, or need support reaching your global immigration goals, we are here to help.
At Smith Stone Walters, moving people across borders is our business. Our expert team are experienced in managing and supporting immigration moves throughout the UK, Europe and the rest of the world.
Contact us today to discuss your requirements – we are immigration experts.