Tips For Working in Brazil

Posted on Mar 22, 2016 | 0 comments

Tips For Working in Brazil

I thought I’d share with you some of the opportunities and challenges of working in Brazil today.


With a population close to 200 million, you can imagine the challenge of so many people trying to find a job. The Brazilian government has strict laws to protect jobs for its citizens, and companies need to prove how an expatriate is more qualified than a Brazilian in order to hire a foreigner. This is a great challenge for many companies since there are so many highly skilled Brazilians available for employment.


Career Options

The best way for expats to find employment in Brazil is through a multinational company. Such companies often offer attractive expat benefits, including housing, health insurance, a car or transportation allowance, and educational support for children.


However, if you are the accompanying spouse/partner, chances are slim that you can land a job before entering the country. Many spouses/partners end up as English language tutors, or translators if they are fluent in Portuguese. Salaries tend to be significantly lower for teachers and pay is usually by the hour. Setting up a small business is an option, but the bureaucratic procedures may deter your efforts.


Different Cities—Different Opportunities

Sao Paolo—a city of 10 million inhabitants—has a plethora of multinational companies and English teaching services while many expats in Rio de Janeiro want to focus their job search on IT-related careers (if you have the skills) or consider working with a nonprofit/nongovernmental organization (NGO).  In Brasilia, opportunities for spouses/partners are with embassies and offices of international organizations, such as the World Bank. Some opportunities may also exist at the Brasilia International School or teaching English.


The greatest challenge most expats face is the work permit. Many organizations are hesitant to offer a work permit to an expat due to strict laws limited most positions to Brazilians. However, if you want further information on the process, you can review Brazil’s Ministry of Planning website. It has comprehensive information about all types of work visas in Brazil. Expats can find information on how to apply for work visas on the Brazilian Embassy website in your home country. For example, the Brazilian Embassy in the United States provides detailed information about how US citizens can obtain work visas. You can also find information on the work permit and visa process on the Fragomen website. Fragomen is an international law firm that focuses on immigration.


If you have ever worked in Brazil, what recommendations or strategies can you offer spouses/partners or students seeking employment in the country? Leave your comments here.



Passport Career provides more detailed career information and extensive resources about networking, finding a job, internship, alternative career opportunities as well as information on writing CVs, cover letters and interviews. If your organization, embassy, university/college, library, or other institution would like access to our country portfolios (15,000+ pages of expert content for 80+ countries and 250+ cities) to share with your students, employees, spouses/partners, and others managing a national or international career transition, please contact us (or email regarding a free, live, online demo and details on how to obtain a license to access Passport Career.


Susan Musich, Executive Director and Founder
Edited by: Anna Sparks, Expert Global Career Consultant

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