In this material we will share the main points of attention regarding the hiring of foreigners by Brazilian companies.

This process is very common in subsidiaries that are part of overseas’ conglomerate. The headquarters of these companies end up sending expatriates to Brazil to manage the business as well as other workers to perform operational and administrative work, whether in the implementation phase or for those already consolidated in the market.

1.Can companies hire foreigners to work here in Brazil?

Yes, and in general, expatriates are hired in 2 ways:

The first one is sending the expatriate to take the management position of the company as an administrator, director or manager (pro labore). In this case, the person will be responsible for managing the business, signing for it.

The second way would be through a normal employment contract. The expatriate would be an employee of the Brazilian company (CLT – Labor law), not having a management position.

2. Are there differences in these 2 ways of hiring expatriates (managers and employees)?

Yes. There are different rules to be applied for each case.

3.What is the procedure for hiring a foreign employee?

The interested company must request a work permit from the Ministry of Labor and Employment called General Immigration Coordination. In addition, the foreigner must apply for a visa from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The foreigner who comes to work in Brazil will need to apply for his RNM (ID), CPF (Tax ID), work card, and the employment contract signed with the company.

4.What are the foreign employee’s rights and duties?

Foreign workers will have the same rights and duties guaranteed by law to Brazilian workers.

5.What are some of these worker’s labor rights?

The worker will be entitled to:

-13th salary



-Weekly paid rest

– Equal workday

-Other benefits, if the company offers, such as meal vouchers, bonuses, medical assistance, among others

6.Can foreign workers earn less than Brazilian workers?

It is not allowed a wage discrimination. Salary parity must be respected for those people who perform the same activity, no matter the nationality.

7. Are there any special rules that the company must pay attention when hiring a foreign employee?

Yes. There is a proportionality rule to be respected of 2/3, that is, for each foreign employee hired, the company must have another 2 Brazilian employees.

This rule should also be followed for the payroll.

The 2/3 rule may not be applied or a smaller proportionality may be applied, in special circumstances by means of an act of the Executive Power or for those specialized technical functions where there is a lack of national workers authorized by the Ministry of Labor.

8.What about foreigners who will hold management positions in the company? What are the rules?

For foreigners who come to hold management positions, the company will be exempt from the 2/3 proportionality rule.

Although exempt from this proportionality, the company will be bound by other conditions such as:

– an external investment by a foreign legal entity in the minimum amount of R$600,000.00 is required; or

– external investment of R$150,000.00 but with a commitment to create a minimum of 10 new jobs within 2 years.

9. Will foreign managers have the same rights that are guaranteed to Brazilian/foreign workers mentioned in question 5 above?

Not. Such managers will not be entitled to the benefits listed therein.

The foreign manager’s remuneration will be limited to his pro labore.


The information shared here is merely informative and does not cover all the rules and exceptions stipulated in Brazilian legislation.

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