As the BVI continues to adjust its economic sails to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Labour Department is reminding some immigrants their expired work permits are no longer eligible for renewals.
The Labour Department said this applies to persons who are out of the territory for six months or more with expired work permits. These workers will be required to submit new applications.
The measure took effect on February 1.
Labour Minister Vincent Wheatley explained to our news centre that the measure does not apply to those in the territory with expired work permits who have been laid off and are waiting to see if they will be rehired by their local employers.
He said this category of workers may apply for provisional work permits.
A number of work permit workers were laid off without pay in 2020 when COVID
-19 hit the BVI and their employers requested more time to gather the severance funds.
The first lay off extension was due to expire on October 31, 2020, but following widespread pleas from business owners across the territory, the government added another three months to the lay-off period, which pushed the expiration period to January 31, 2021.
The government has extended the expiry date for a third time and now employees will now have to wait until February 28 to see whether the government issues another extension, or if they will finally have access to their severance packages.