Mon | Jun 18, 2018

I want to migrate to Jamaica

Published:Friday | October 12, 2012 | 12:00 AM

I am an Australian who recently got married to a Jamaican. I am enquiring about the process of obtaining a spousal visa and any other required visa to live and work in Jamaica.

CONGRATULATIONS ON your recent marriage. As a foreign national, you would need to obtain a work-permit exemption from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, as well as to seek an extension of your stay from the Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA), in order to work on the island. Alternatively, your marriage to a Jamaican allows you to have the option of applying for permanent-residence status, or obtaining your Jamaican citizenship, which would see you being able to work here.

If you choose to obtain permanent residency, then you would need to visit the Extension of Stay Unit at PICA and fill out an application form. You must also submit a valid passport.

Typically, applicants would need to provide evidence of their financial status, particulars relating to pension, bank account, investment, property owned, etc. However, this would not be necessary in your case as you are married to a Jamaican.

Other items that you would need to submit are:

  • Your birth certificate;
  • Marriage certificate;
  • Spouse's Jamaican birth certificate;
  • Medical certificate to show good health;
  • Police certificate from the country you are migrating and;
  • Two identical passport-size photographs.

In addition to the above, you need to submit a letter stating your reason for wanting to live here. The letter must be addressed to the Chief Executive Officer, 25c Constant Spring Road, Kingston 10. The process usually takes upward of eight months.

Typically, permanent residents who are aliens (i.e., non-Common-wealth citizens) are issued with re-entry visas valid for the duration of the life of their passport.

This is not necessary in your case however, as Australia is a member of the Commonwealth. The cost of obtaining your permanent residency is $30,000.


If you choose to apply for Jamaican citizenship, note that you will be granted citizenship by virtue of your marriage to a Jamaican. To apply for citizenship by virtue of marriage, note that:

1. The application should be made (in duplicate) on Registration Form R1 which, is obtainable at the Jamaica Printing Services, 771/2 Duke Street, Kingston. For applicants residing overseas, the forms may be obtained through the various Jamaican Missions or the Agency's website at

2. The form should be read carefully, then completed and signed in the presence of a justice of the peace, a notary public or someone authorised to administer oaths

These should be submitted at the Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency, 25c Constant Spring Road, and accompanied by the following documents:

  • Applicant's birth certificate;
  • Official marriage certificate (certified copy issued by the Registrar General);
  • Husband's/wife's official birth certificate;
  • Husband's /wife's current passport;
  • Verification of income;
  • Recent bank statement;
  • Two passport-size photographs of the applicant, certified by a justice of the peace, a notary public or someone authorised to administer oaths;
  • A Tax Compliance Certificate (if resident in Jamaica);
  • A police certificate from country of last residence (overseas);
  • A fee of J$15,000 or its equivalent.

Persons residing overseas may submit their applications through the nearest Jamaica Mission which will then forward the application to Kingston for processing.

For further information, visit the website of the Passport, Immigration & Citizenship Agency at