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Bermuda: Labour Regulation

Work Permits

This page was last updated on 5 August 2019.

Under the Bermuda Immigration and Protection Act 1956 the Immigration Department of the Bermudian government requires Bermudian citizens to be given first refusal on any job position. If the post has been advertised in local newspapers three times and if no Bermudian is registered in a related work category with the Government Employment Office, a non-Bermudian can be offered the job.

The employer must apply to the Immigration Department on the worker's behalf for a permit. The cost of a work permit is met by the future employer, and varies according to the proposed length of employment.

In October, 2003, the work permit term limit policy was sharply criticized by former Labour and Home Affairs Minister Quinton Edness, who urged the government to drop the current rules in favour of a more flexible scheme practiced in many other countries.

Bermudian companies wanting to employ individuals on temporary assignments in the territory may apply for a temporary work permit; this is generally granted for three months and can normally be renewed. There is no need to advertise the position in Bermuda.

Companies that are good corporate citizens are those that adhere to best practices such as:

  • actively attracting, recruiting and training Bermudians and being able to demonstrate the same;
  • reporting periodically on training programmes and opportunities provided by the employer for Bermudians;
  • producing clear and correct advertisements;
  • disclosing full information about the selection procedure including the interview process;
  • submitting fully completed and accurate applications e.g. correct fee, fully completed questionnaire form, properly identified chest X-ray(s), etc.;
  • being free of any case of legal action in Bermuda against the company for poor industrial practices or human rights violations;
  • and any other activities which will serve to enhance the reputation of a good corporate citizen, such as:
    • providing business plans indicating development options periodically;
    • being recognised as meeting the standards set by organisations, such as Investors-in-People;
    • voluntarily contributing to the development of Bermudians through organisations such as the Bermuda Careers Centre, the National Training Board, the Bermuda Insurance Institute, scholarships, programmes aimed at providing for Bermudians to gain overseas work experience, significant financial support for job-related courses and training, etc.

From 25 August 2017, applicants for most types of work permit (including standard) must also obtain a police certificate. These are called ‘certificate of no criminal conviction’ or something similar and can be requested from the police authority of the applicant’s last country of residence. The police certificate must be valid for a minimum of six months.



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