Bermuda Visa Troubles

Old Jul 13th 2011, 1:12 pm
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Default Bermuda Visa Troubles

Hi everyone!

I've recently just joined up to this website as I love how much you help each other.

I'm 25 and I work as a finance administrator in Central London. My fiancé is 26 and he is currently waiting for his exam result for his final ACCA exam next month. He will then be fully qualified Chartered Accountant. With this, we really want to move to the Caribbean for two years and get out of the rat race before we settle down and get married.

As far as I am aware, he will automatically get a work visa through his ACCA qualification, however as I am not qualified, and we are unmarried I will need to get a work visa of some sort... What is the best way going about this? I’m just not quite sure how to get started... Do you think it is even feasible for me to obtain a working visa?

Lisa x
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Old Jul 13th 2011, 1:23 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Originally Posted by Leace86 View Post
Hi everyone!

I've recently just joined up to this website as I love how much you help each other.

I'm 25 and I work as a finance administrator in Central London. My fiancé is 26 and he is currently waiting for his exam result for his final ACCA exam next month. He will then be fully qualified Chartered Accountant.
a. he needs to go through an admission process, proving work experience, etc, in order to become a full ACCA member.

b. he will be able to call himself a "Chartered Certified Accountant" or "Certified Accountant" but he will get into trouble if he calls himself a "Chartered Accountant".

In fact, in Bermuda, he may have limits on what professional title he can use unless he is a Bermuda Chartered Accountant.
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Old Jul 13th 2011, 1:32 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Hi Jaj, thanks for your msg, -Sorry I may have got the job title confused, but yes, hes been doing all of those processes & he has been working at a great chartered accountants in the city for the past three years so he has the relevant experience for the qualification. To be honest, he seems pretty sorted from his side of things.

It's more my visa situation of not being qualified and wanting to work if I was able to move over with him...
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Old Jul 13th 2011, 4:15 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Hi, I had a friend who worked in Investor Services for HSBC I think - she managed to get a permit through them. Get on LinkedIn and makes some contacts in your field and see whether you can get a job or at least set up interviews for a trip out there.
Not sure whether you have to be married first to be a dependant but if so you could be a dependant on his visa until you manage to find a job although I dont think you are allowed to enter Bermuda to look for work. It is a tough economy to break into and very expensive to live. Your fiance is getting a transfer through his company?
Good Luck.
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Old Aug 6th 2011, 1:55 am
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Just to be sure... Original Poster wanted to head to the Caribbean - And, as we are all bright individuals, we know Bermuda is quite a long way from the Carib, right? It is in the Atlantic Ocean. I just wanted to check, as I spent several years living in Bermuda, and the Caribbean it ain't!!!
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Old Aug 7th 2011, 12:42 am
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Originally Posted by Leace86 View Post
As far as I am aware, he will automatically get a work visa through his ACCA qualification, however as I am not qualified, and we are unmarried I will need to get a work visa of some sort... What is the best way going about this? I’m just not quite sure how to get started... Do you think it is even feasible for me to obtain a working visa?

Lisa x
I am not sure what you mean by he will "automatically get a visa through his qualification". There are all kinds of hoops to jump through to get a work permit for Bermuda and there is nothing automatic about it.

I cannot remember if it is possible to go on his work permit as a partner, when I was there most of us had our individual work permits. I think you might find it hard to get your own work permit, Bermuda is very strict on this.

Also as someone else said Bermuda is not in the Caribbean. I did not wear a coat there once in two years but the Atlantic Ocean is not comfortable to be in outside about May to October (unlike the Caribbean).
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Old Aug 16th 2011, 11:35 am
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Originally Posted by Bermudashorts View Post
I am not sure what you mean by he will "automatically get a visa through his qualification". There are all kinds of hoops to jump through to get a work permit for Bermuda and there is nothing automatic about it.

I cannot remember if it is possible to go on his work permit as a partner, when I was there most of us had our individual work permits. I think you might find it hard to get your own work permit, Bermuda is very strict on this.

Also as someone else said Bermuda is not in the Caribbean. I did not wear a coat there once in two years but the Atlantic Ocean is not comfortable to be in outside about May to October (unlike the Caribbean).
Further to Bermudashorts, this thread got off to a confusing start by entitling it Bermuda Visa Troubles.

Bermuda grants work permits only in order to reside and work and not working visas so your entitlement to reside and work in Bermuda as a guest worker only relates to your ability to perform a SPECIFIC job function which Bermudians are not able to perform. Visas are an add-on where you come from a specific country which requires additional immigration scrutiny of which the UK is not one.

In order to live with your partner you will need to be married first or have your own work permit. In today's recessionary work environment in Bermuda in which many existing work permit holders have been let go as a matter of policy to limit job losses for Bermudians it is going to be hard to justify a work permit for you unless you can demonstrate skills not readily available on-Island and then some. The only shortages of labour outside of newly qualified accountants, qualified engineers (mechanical and IT) and highly experienced insurance and banking industry execs are typically in the culinary skills area (chefs, bakers, pastry chefs) and even then employers have to struggle to get work permits.

You will not be able to seek employment once on-Island if you go the married route and this can put a real strain on partnerships in terms of boredom and finances.

Last edited by Pistolpete2; Aug 16th 2011 at 11:38 am.
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Old Aug 28th 2011, 1:01 am
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

I can just confirm what Pistolspete2 said.
I am an expat living in Bermuda and that's true.
  • You can't search job on the island except if you are entitled by the immigration to do so
  • My wife got a land permit on top of my work permit and permission to seek jobs for which she was qualified for
  • Your Work Permit (there is no VISA here) is bind to the employer, if you quit your job there are very few chances of getting a new one with a new employer
  • You can search a new job ONLY after two years with the previous employer and it has to release your work permit with a specific letter sent to the immigration
  • There is not logical like other countries for "partner", if it is not legally married with you. For example, omosezual couples here can't bring their partner as it is not recognized in Bermuda
Personally, I would seek employment in OZ and stay away from this country ... where expats have no rights at all ...
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Old Aug 28th 2011, 3:11 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Originally Posted by randb View Post
I can just confirm what Pistolspete2 said.
I am an expat living in Bermuda and that's true.
  • You can't search job on the island except if you are entitled by the immigration to do so
  • My wife got a land permit on top of my work permit and permission to seek jobs for which she was qualified for
  • Your Work Permit (there is no VISA here) is bind to the employer, if you quit your job there are very few chances of getting a new one with a new employer
  • You can search a new job ONLY after two years with the previous employer and it has to release your work permit with a specific letter sent to the immigration
  • There is not logical like other countries for "partner", if it is not legally married with you. For example, homosexual couples here can't bring their partner as it is not recognized in Bermuda
Personally, I would seek employment in OZ and stay away from this country ... where expats have no rights at all ...
Can you just clarify this randb,

On what basis do Bermuda Immigration currently grant permission for spouses of Work Permit holders to seek employment in Bermuda while already on-Island?

In what areas of employment?

Is it discretionary?

I'm familiar with previous arrangements where spouses were allowed, for example, to work in the retail sector due to a shortage of available Bermudians at certain times of year. I doubt that is still the case though.

Thanks!

I do see this, from http://www.bermuda-online.org/employwp.htm

"Those from overseas who arrive married and with their spouses and any child or children should note that when one spouse is offered employment, the employment contract applies only to the person employed. The other spouse must make his or her own arrangements with his or her own employer if they wish to be employed - and if - which can be a big if - they are allowed to accept employment locally. All spouses should be aware that if they do not have a degree - sometimes not just a degree but a good, relevant degree - it is extremely unlikely they will be able to obtain any remunerated employment in Bermuda. One of the many problems with recruiters or head-hunters - including some used by Bermuda-based banks, insurance companies, accounting firms and law firms - is that they are untruthful or evasive, instead of being forthright and honest, to both new work-permit holders and their spouses who also hope to get employment in Bermuda. They advise - wrongly - that spouses will have no problems finding employment."

Last edited by Pistolpete2; Aug 28th 2011 at 3:28 pm. Reason: bermuda online
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Old Aug 28th 2011, 5:41 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Bullshit
As soon as I got my 3 years work permit my wife, like any other wife of a work permit holder, got a land letter that allows her to land and live in Bermuda for the entire duration of my work permit.
During this time she is allowed to seek employment of any type, advertised or not advertised. It is important that when she will apply for her work permit, while in the island, she will have all the paperworks that prove she is eligible for the job.
Anyway, as soon as my work permit expires, her work permit will be null and she will have to leave the island with me.
If you want, you can go to this forum http://bermudasucks.com and ask to the local expats how it works. THere are some of them that have a lot of information, more than me.
What I said here is based on my personal experience in Bermuda (4 years)
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Old Aug 28th 2011, 7:19 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Originally Posted by randb View Post
Bullshit
As soon as I got my 3 years work permit my wife, like any other wife of a work permit holder, got a land letter that allows her to land and live in Bermuda for the entire duration of my work permit.
During this time she is allowed to seek employment of any type, advertised or not advertised. It is important that when she will apply for her work permit, while in the island, she will have all the paperworks that prove she is eligible for the job.
Anyway, as soon as my work permit expires, her work permit will be null and she will have to leave the island with me.
If you want, you can go to this forum http://bermudasucks.com and ask to the local expats how it works. THere are some of them that have a lot of information, more than me.
What I said here is based on my personal experience in Bermuda (4 years)
From what you are saying Bermuda Immigration now take the view that it is better to use the services of a non-working expat spouse already in Bermuda, if qualified, than to bring in another family, with resultant impact on housing, traffic and schools, to fill that same position. But, as you say, it is only conditional on the initial work permit holder keeping their job.

All makes sense which is surprising since most immigration departments don't.
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Old Aug 28th 2011, 9:43 pm
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Yes it is even if there are many other negative things about Bermuda and its immigration department.
Are you considering to move here or did you already?
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Old Aug 29th 2011, 10:03 am
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Default Re: Bermuda Visa Troubles

Originally Posted by randb View Post
Yes it is even if there are many other negative things about Bermuda and its immigration department.
Are you considering to move here or did you already?
No just trying to get the information as accurate as possible for other users. My initial comments were based upon the fact that it is now hard for spouses to satisfy Bermuda Immigration that they should be entitled to go for a work permit in many job categories when already in Bermuda so I was negative on the prospects for the non-working spouses converting to working.

This is backed up by a recruiting agency (Hamilton Recruitment) but you are "on the ground" so I was getting your first-hand experience.

I've done my time in Bermuda (30 years to 2006) and Immigration rules have always been in a state of flux though actually ending up far better than they started, apart from a rule requiring Bermudians married to foreigners to get a license to own real estate.

Bermuda rules of one sort or another bit me sufficiently badly over the years that I have no intention of jumping through any hoops to gain citizenship here in St Lucia in spite of being entitled - British (UK) will have to do!

Last edited by Pistolpete2; Aug 29th 2011 at 10:09 am.
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