March 07, 2013

This year, the Judaic observation of Passover will commence with the Passover Seder (March 25) through the Eighth Day (April 2). The Christian observance of Easter will commence on Good Friday (March 29) through Easter Monday (April 1). Between the last week of March and the first week of April, these major holidays may create short-term delays in immigration processes in certain countries as well as two or three-day closures of certain consular posts.

Passover in Israel

Israel’s Ministry of Interior, Population Immigration and Border Authority (PIBA) and the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor (MOITAL) will be closed during the Passover break from March 25-April 2, 2013. Offices will re-open on April 3.

During this time, assignees should expect delays of between one to two weeks to process new and renewal B-1 work permit applications. As current processing times by the PIBA and the MOITAL for new and renewal B-1’s are taking between 8-12 weeks, the Passover break may delay processing of B-1’s through mid-April.

In addition, there may be a one-week delay in obtaining any business/tourist visas at Israeli consular posts. Please also note that Israeli consular posts around the world may observe a disparate schedule during this time. (For instance, the Israeli Consulate in Chicago will be closed on March 29-April 1, while the consulate in San Francisco will be closed on March 26-27 and April 1-2.)

Easter – Globally

This Easter will generally be observed from March 29-April 1 in most of the Americas and European Union, while certain countries in Asia Pacific may observe to a lesser degree. In Eastern Europe and Russia, Easter is celebrated slightly after the Christian observance.

For most countries, processing of work permit and renewal applications will not be significantly delayed.

However, employees with travel intended travel dates in late March through early April are advised to confirm any consular post closings and to expect possible, short delays in obtaining visas. Also, as Easter is a four-day holiday, travelers are advised to expect reduced staff at borders and ports of entry, thereby creating possible long wait times to clear immigration control.

Caveat Lector | Warning to Reader

This is provided as informational only and does not substitute for actual legal advice based on the specific circumstances of a matter. Readers are reminded that Immigration laws are fluid and can change a moment’s notice without any warning. Please reach out to your local Pro-Link GLOBAL specialist should you require any additional clarification. This alert was prepared by Glenn Faulk, Senior Manager, Knowledge Management. Pro-Link GLOBAL worked with our PLG | KGNM Correspondent Office in Israel to provide you this update.

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