COLOMBIA – New requirements take effect for educational degree validation

Foreign employees should anticipate delays and longer timelines as the new procedures are implemented.

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IMPACT – MEDIUM

What is the change? Foreign nationals seeking validation of their educational degrees by Colombian authorities are subject to a new process.

What does the change mean? Processing times during the first stages of the validation process will take longer. Applicants will need to obtain an academic certificate by the educational institution translated into Spanish and apostilled, and then the Ministry of Education will issue a preliminary letter indicating that documentary requirements have been fulfilled. 

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: Degree validation processes.
  • Who is affected: Foreign nationals obtaining validation of university degrees.
  • Impact on processing times: The preliminary stage, in which the ministry reviews the application to determine if all document requirements have been met, will take 30 days (previously, it took eight days). Additionally, the preliminary letter does not guarantee that the degree validation will be approved.
  • Business impact: Employers should factor in additional time for document-gathering and obtaining the ministry’s preliminary letter.

BAL Analysis: Foreign employees should anticipate delays and longer timelines as the new procedures are implemented. Companies should adjust business schedules accordingly, as the degree validation process is separate from the visa process and affects work start dates.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Colombia. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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