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It is not necessary to return your CIE card to the Federal Police when you leave Brazil and there is no exit visa required to leave the country. On arrival in Brazil an embarkation/disembarkation card is issued to all visitors by the immigration authorities. It must be completed and signed upon arrival. You should keep the relevant portion of the card while in Brazil. On leaving the country this card is checked by the immigration officials to make sure that you haven’t overstayed their visit. Those who have overstayed their visa deadline will be fined.

Where necessary be ready to leave a forwarding address for any correspondence. Before leaving Brazil permanently you will need to cancel your tax identification number, unless you intend to maintain assets in the country. If your visa is linked to a foreign assignment your “Registro Nacional de Estrangeiros” will have to be given up upon departure. A regular permanent visa can be maintained as long as you visit Brazil at least once every two years.

If you’ve been filing tax returns in Brazil you should get in touch with the Ministry of Finance (Receita Federal). There may be outstanding payments or refunds due. If you fail to file a final tax return and obtain the necessary tax clearance certificate you will be considered a resident of Brazil for tax purposes for one year following your departure.

If you’ve been paying social security contributions to the National Institute of Social Security (Instituto Nacional do Seguro Social) you will need to go to your nearest Social Welfare office (Previdência Social) and inform them that you will no longer be contributing.

If you’re renting accommodation in Brazil one month’s written notice of lease cancellation will be required. In addition one month’s rent will be charged in the case of early termination of the lease. It is the responsibility of the tenant to cancel utility bills and this can usually be done by telephone. There is no notice period or penalty for terminating the utility contracts. The Portuguese term for this is “corte definitivamente”. In São Paulo the electricity supplier is AES Eletropaulo. Comgás is the mains gas supplier in São Paulo. In São Paulo the water is supplied by Sabes. Note that water bills are registered to the property and not the occupant's name, so when you leave just inform the water company so your name is removed from the address. To disconnect the telephone service contact your service provider.

International schools in Sao Paulo require one school term’s written notice to the head teacher advising him or her of your child’s intention to leave. In exceptional circumstances this may be negotiable. In the case of state schools a reasonable amount of notice needs to be given but the rules are not as strictly enforced as in private institutions.

Rules on closing bank accounts vary so it is important to check with your own bank regarding their policy. There is currently no mail forwarding service offered by the Brazilian Post Office (Correios). Depending on the destination, some animals travelling with you may require a period of quarantine. They will almost certainly require documentation and possible additional vaccinations etc. Visit a vet to be informed of the latest requirements. The exportation of rare or endangered animal species may be restricted, and/or will require prior authorisation from the Ministry of Agriculture

Related article: Preparing for your move

Update 13/12/2010


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