New Immigration Regulations are published for Public Comment

The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) today published the new “*Draft Immigration Regulations 2014*”:https://www.into-sa.com for public comment, which are based on the “*Immigration Amendment Act No. 13 of 2011*”:https://www.into-sa.com and which can come into effect as early as June 2014!!

h3. Intended Changes

Part of the anticipated changes include – but are not limited to – the Immigration Practitioners, that are currently regulated under Section 46 of the SA Immigration Act will no longer be regulated and *Applicants will have to appear in Person* at one of the Visa Facilitation Services (although accompanied by us!). All permits will from now on be called Visa! A *Critical Skills Visa* will re place the exceptional skills and quota work permits. The critical skills category will be in accordance with a specified skills list, which will be made available by the DHA, but thus remains in their discretion. All first time *Work Visa* applications must be applied for at the Consulate, Embassy or SA High Commission outside South Africa and the applicant may enter SA to take up their activities, once the appropriate visa has been endorsed in their passport. Clarification is still required relating to what the situation will be regarding foreigners, who are currently in SA on work permits and who need to extend or change their permits. Several changes will be made to the *Business Visa* category and a new criteria will have to be met in order to apply for the new business visa. *Intra-Company Transfer Work Visa* are currently issued for a maximum duration of 24 months. This will change to 48 months. *Corporate Visa* will not be issued to “undesirable businesses” such as strip clubs and the possession of a Workers Visa under this permit will no longer contribute to a Permanent Residence Application. *Visa Facilitation Services* will manage South African Immigration; there will be 11 centres, which will be spread throughout South Africa. Visa applications will be submitted and paid for at the VFS offices and they will in turn, forward the applications to the Head Office of the DHA in Pretoria for adjudication. *Additional Fees* will more than likely be payable to the VFS offices, in addition to the usual visa fees. Further clarity is awaited, relating to this topic.

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