The sudden imposition of the island wide curfew in Sri Lanka due to the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many a person ‘overstaying their visa’ and thus being in violation of the Immigrants and Emigrants Act.
The Department of Immigration and Emigration taking cognizance of this unavoidable situation has issued a Special Directive in terms of which ‘all types of visas, issued to a person presently in Sri Lanka, are extended until the 12th of May 2020’. The extension extends to acknowledgements issued by the Department of Immigration and Emigration, for applications already submitted and where applicants have not been able to collect the passports, due to the prevailing situation.
The Department of Immigration and Emigration will make known the applicable fees in due course; in the interim however, should any person be travelling out of Sri Lanka the payment of an applicable fee will be levied and payment will require to be made at the point of exit (e.g.: airport) with no penalty applicable in any event.
If an applicant’s passport is in the custody of the Department of Immigration and Emigration and should such person require to travel out of Sri Lanka, a written request to obtain the passport may be made, along with a scanned copy of the acknowledgement and a copy of the flight ticket to any of the following e-mail addresses:
The directions for collection of the passport will be communicated to the applicant.
All persons are therefore requested to refrain from visiting the Department of Immigration and Emigration.
In addition to this, a further directive has been issued by the Department of Immigration and Emigration to suspend the issuance of all types of visas for entry to Sri Lanka, until further notice, with already issued Electronic Travel Authorizations issued, Entry Visas, Residence Visas, Landing Endorsements to foreign nationals not having entered Sri Lanka, being suspended until further notice.