BVI News

New online application system for Immigration

Premier Smith

The Immigration Department is implementing an online application process for entry permits.

Premier Dr D Orlando Smith made the announcement late Friday afternoon, adding that the online system is now being tested.

“We expect this to be up and running within the next few weeks… This will add to the efficiency of the application process at the Immigration Department,” said Premier Smith.

While the online platform is being created, employers are now able to send entry permit applications directly to Immigration.

The Premier said: “As of Monday, February 19, any company can have their entry permits processed for the employees by having all the documents for the employees sent from the company directly to the Immigration Department. This would also apply for the owners or managers of companies.”


Meanwhile, the Premier said organisations or persons responsible for any number of volunteers are now required to submit volunteer applications to the Road Town-based facility.

Persons must write to the Chief Immigration Officer indicating the name of the parent organisation, when persons are expected to arrive in the territory, and how long they plan to stay, the Premier said.

“This request will then be facilitated by the Immigration Department,” Dr Smith added.

The changes are being rolled out to improve the Immigration process which has been described as chronically cumbersome.

Persons comprising mostly expatriate workers have been flocking the department in crowds since the hurricanes.

These persons are forced to stand in extremely long lines to get their Immigration documents processed.

The problem is compounded by the influx of persons entering the territory to assist with recovery.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    i will lik to knw if d stop d process of doing the medical out of d country so when d person arrival in the bvi the will do it here

    • watcher says:

      Even crazier is the fact that anyone already here who needs a medical for a change in status for example is sent out of the country to have it. And even if you can get a medical done here , you are still sent on a pointless visit to St Thomas or wherever so you then re-enter under ypur new status.

      Mindless bureaucracy is everywhere in these islands.

  2. Love my bvi says:


    Wait. Online, like the Internet with computers and stuff? Are we sure this is the BVI?

    Sooo timeline wise… Three weeks means three months to bring the system online. Then immigration must print all docs (one week), then stamp everything (one week), find the ones they lost( one week), request additional information (one week), phone you to have you appear in person (one week)) and then finally decide that your employer submitted everything incorrectly online. Start over.

    I can’t wait to submit my docs. Lol…

    • Really now says:

      Shut up!

      • Love my bvi says:


        Question your government and its leaders. It’s your right.

        And when they do stupid or inane things you must call them out.

        By the way, you must work for immigration. Hmmm

    • Expect More says:

      Why do we have such low expectations for our country? If we expect better we will get it.

      • Love my bvi says:

        We expect less because we have seen time and again that we set expectations high. Sadly, when it comes to actual results, the underperformance of government and individuals in charge becomes apparent.

        This plan, while bold and ground breaking, will fail. Miserably. Just watch.

        Why do you ask? I can name multiple. First, monies need to assigned for staff, computers, servers, support. But that then means we need qualified techs for that. Since we have none, we need to import labor. So then we are back to the primary problem of getting people in. The project is then delayed further, people will lose faith, immigration will be apathetic as usual, and lo,and behold we have done nothing but wasted money and time.

    • watcher says:

      As I understand it , work permits are processed by Labour not Immigration. Immigration merely give you the time stamp in your passport after you get the wotk permit. So what exactly is this about?

      • E. Fish NC says:

        The Work Permit card has an expiry dare on it. So why cannot that serve as the permit to be here. Why is a passprt stamp needed as well?

    • Charles Babbage says:

      Anyone can knock up a complex new computer system in a few days.

  3. True says:

    The people we elected. What a —— —- we are.

  4. WELSAH says:

    Its like volunteers have to BEG to come here .

  5. Sam the Man says:

    Another car crash of an idea – wow the NDP – No Direction Party are pushing the boundaries ! Lavish spending on the waste of a time race track, investment in sod all Agriculture to save the economy ! Why not extend the runway for a few hundred million dollars !!! Oh but of course that’s already in the recovery plan…. Stuff the hospitals, roads, fire stations and entire island infrastructure… Why not start a penguin farm – no doubt one of the ministers has a draft for this already…

  6. Hmm says:

    I thought all work permit applications go through Labor Department and not immigration.

    Why are we sending them to Immigration now?

  7. I From Here says:

    So, they doing this for Labour too? That department is a complete mess. Work permits taking over two months to process and nobody answering de phones.

  8. watcher says:

    The only rule for Labour and Immigration is that there are no rules. Badly trained or just power mad clerks in both departments make it up as they go along. And more or less do what they want.

    I know of one employee who when the ownership of her employing company changed , was told she must bring a copy of the full multi page , confidential, sale contract of the business into Labour before her work permit could be extended. She was a waitress.

  9. Maggie says:

    So what is to happen with renewing non-working residency? All it requires is a simple process but you are still required to stand in line for 3-4 hours.

  10. Pfffff says:

    What a lot of negativity….finally something is done and people are still complaining. Please embrace the attempt to improve and trust that a second step will be taken to further improve the services. (Such as replacing the entire immigration staff by a qualified, client friendly and non racist team…)

  11. BT CREASE says:


  12. Action Plan says:

    1. Move the work permit functions of labor to immigration.

    2. Split everything else in labor among the trade, complaints and attorney general departments

    3. Close the labor department.

  13. Good news says:

    Makes sense, as long as the immigration staff can use it efficiently. There is a new site that is doing this for work permit applications, but it’s not the labour department,

  14. Positive says:

    I think maybe they can have different lines for different purposes, or do different things on specific days and times. This may help. At least they are trying something new. Give them a chance and let’s see how it works.

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