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National Migration Registry Card (CRNM)

National Migration Registry Card (CRNM)
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The National Migration Registry Card (CRNM) is the physical document identifying immigrants registered in Brazil, valid throughout the national territory and bearing the RNM number.


The National Migration Registry (RNM) is the alphanumeric registry number resulting from the identification of each immigrant through his or her personal information and fingerprints.


Previously, the RNM was called RNE – Registro Nacional de Estrangeiro (National Registry of Foreigners), and the CRNM was called CIE – Cédula de Identidade de Estrangeiro (Alien Identity Card).

To reside in Brazil for a longer period, foreigners can apply for an RNE or new CRNM (Carteira de Registro Nacional Migratorio).

Now, who can register for this, and for what purpose does this make sense?

As already mentioned, this topic becomes interesting when someone wants to be in Brazil for a longer period for study, work, family reunification, asylum, etc…

The bureaucracy marathon already starts with collecting the right information. We will try to explain the procedure and necessary preparations in the next paragraphs. For this, we can report on our own experiences, mistakes, and knowledge.

The Residence Permit is granted to the immigrant who intends to work or reside in Brazil and settle there temporarily or permanently, provided that he/she meets the specific requirements provided for in the Migration Law and its Regulation.

With the residence permit, the immigrant is registered (the registration consists of a civil identification based on biographic and biometric data) to obtain a National Migration Registry (RNM) number and the National Migration Registration Card (CRNM).

How to start

It always depends on what the reason for the request is. Depending on this, different documents must be presented.  For this, however, good information can be obtained on the websites of the Policia Federal. In our case, we have chosen the reason regarding family reunification as it was our purpose.

Respectively wife is Brazilian and the husband is European. 

Now we can tell from our own experience that appropriate document preparation is important to minimize the effort. Therefore, we have shown below as an example the necessary preparations based on our case and will show you based on the process where the errors occurred that could have been avoided. Now there was no urgency in our case, so we could have easily made several attempts.


  1. Fill out the application form under obter-autorização de residencia e carteira de registro Migratório and choose green Button “Iniciar”
  2. You will be asked on the next page to choose the specific application form.
  3. You have to fill out the application form
  4. After that, a Protocol will be generated with QR Code. Please print it out because you will need it when you are going to meet the authorities 
  5. After that, you can make an appointment online with the Policia federal. This can be done here Agenda Web
  6. Before the appointment, you should still make the following payments and have the receipts ready for the appointment. The receipts must be presented to the Policia Federal. These are the residence permit of R$ 168.13 and also the CRNM of R$ 204.77. These vouchers must be paid in advance. Normally this can be done in advance at the payment offices described in the post  What is the CPF – Cadastro de Pessoas Físicas ? 
  7. Once the appointment at the Policia Federal is set, you should take all the necessary documents with you. For more information, I have listed below the example of family reunification.

    On the website of the Policia Federal, there is also the necessary information for all other cases. However, the site is mostly only available in Portuguese. Considering that it is about migration and the likelihood of someone having a high enough level of proficiency in the Portuguese language, this fact is rather negative. I have therefore translated the deeded documents or prerequisites as well as observations chapters below from the Policia Federal page into English.

    On the other hand, it is important to understand that one should be able to speak Portuguese to move efficiently and effectively in this wonderful country.

    What I personally would like to say is this: Brazil is a wonderful country and very hospitable. Like any country, it has its positive and negative points. The issue of language may be evaluated individually, but I think it’s good that you can not everywhere switch to English or another language and have to deal with the Portuguese language depending on the destination and motives. Because the language of a country says a lot about the country and its people as well as their culture.

    Now once again who only go on vacation also get along with English. There is no problem with it although it might be a little bit more difficult than in other countries

  8. Documents, please make sure that on the day of your meeting with Policia Federal you have all your documents ready. And here the following is very important. The complete necessary documentation is given below under “Needed documents or prerequisites” and “observations”. The items under this point 8 are only additional notes which are intended to provide clarification or assistance on specific required documents. In addition, there are links to further declarations which must also be filled out online, printed out in paper form, and attached to the application on the day of the appointment with the Policia Federal.
    • Criminal Record: It is not enough to order a normal criminal record extract in your own country and then show it even if it is issued in English. You will be rejected straight away with the remark,
      • The criminal record extract must be apostilled. Don’t worry, most countries, like ours, already offer this as standard for this case. Only we had not considered this the first time. And you can imagine with 3 weeks of vacation you can cancel this exercise and start again. Only a consulate in the same city in Brazil can help. Unfortunately, this was not the case for us. But since I am in Brazil annually and the issue is not ultra-urgent, we can do this next year then.
      • The criminal record extract, as well as all other documents not officially issued in Brazil, must be translated into the Portuguese language by a certified translator. I repeat certified translator. In addition, remember my little explanation above about the language. Again, if not available you will be sent straight home with the difference that there are plenty of certified translators on site. So you can still do this in Brazil provided the original is apostilled. Without the apostille, even the translator is useless.
    • Current photo: In 3×4 format, can be made in brazil in almost every major shopping center and without major waiting times.
    • Document proving a domicile address in Brazil. Well, in my case it is not about the fact that I already live in Brazil. Both my Brazilian wife and I live abroad but want to settle in Brazil later. This means that my wife as a Brazilian already has the RNE number, only I need one. To get one, we have to prove that one of the two has a domicile address. This is usually proven by an electricity or water bill in the name of one or both of them. In Brazil, they prove such things with a bill. But such proof is necessary. 
    • For married people, it is a great advantage to register the official status in Brazil. For example, our civil status is also registered in the registry office of the city of my wife. So there is no need to apostille or translate a document again because this is already done.
    • Another big advantage to getting the RNE is to have already registered a CPF number beforehand see also What is the CPF – Cadastro de Pessoas Físicas ? Although there is nothing mentioned in the documents section below, in my opinion, this is a precondition to get an RNE number at all and in a further step a working permit.
  1. Additional online forms mentioned in the “Needed documents or prerequisites” section must be completed and hard copies attached to the application (see) left.
  2. Day of issue: Once the appointment at the Policia Federal is perceived, the waiting time at the office goes longer than the necessary service. This essentially means that you should allow enough time. It is not the first time that the RNE is issued in physical form, but you have to show up, show all the documents, and the process for the issuance is recorded and started. Let’s put it this way. After the appointment, everything is already done and you just have to wait until the RNE is ready for collection. This then goes on for a few days or weeks. The fact is that after the first appointment, the provisional RNE can already be obtained. Important two points when keeping the appointment.
    • The Policia Federal is the police, so you shouldn’t act like a bully if you can’t handle the wait times. Patience is the order of the day here. Other countries have different customs and who says that in your own country everything is more perfect and faster. Brazil has many advantages okay bureaucracy is not one of them but I hope the reader understands what I want to say.

    • At the Policia Federal, it does not work with shorts and Havaianas. Will say decent clothes. You don’t have to come in an anorak but long pants and normal footwear, as well as a t-shirt that is clean and not pierced, is a must. Here I speak from my own experience. I wanted to be decently dressed but with shorts perceive the appointment and was sent home with a nice smile again. Crap my wife should have known it, but because she lives now already 15 years with me outside of Brazil, there is probably what went down. In cities like Salvador Bahia, this can then quickly mean a few hours more. This brings me to the next point
    • Find out in which field office the requests are handled. For example, for foreigners in Salvador Bahia, this is only handled at the Policia Federal at the airport. Had cost us a few misinformation and hours, respectively unnecessary driving kilometers.
    • If you are getting information verbally, verify the information multiple times. You will save yourself a lot of trouble. Unfortunately, the public office in Brazil is organized so complexly that sometimes the officials can not give accurate information, and multiple verifications are well worth it.
    • Last but not least, the appointment can only take place in the place where the persons are domiciled.
  3. So now everything is done and you have received the provisional already usable RNE. Celebrate and wait is the order of the day. This means that during the celebration you should check again and again under the following processing link how it looks with the issuance of the RNM card. As soon as this is done, the form can be printed out (contains the collection information) and the CRNM card can be picked up.  Again, an appointment for collection must then be booked online. 
  4. Hopefully – THE END – is equal to – HAPPY END – you made it!


Needed documents or prerequisites

  • Proper application, using an electronic form duly filled out on the Federal Police website (available at Obtain Residence Permit);
  • 1(one) 3×4 photo, recent, color, white background, plain paper, front face (in case of unavailability of the Federal Police biometric data collection system, the presentation may be required);
  • Declaration of address and other means of contact, preferably accompanied by a simple copy of proof of residence (click here);
  • Valid travel document or official ID;
  • Birth or marriage certificate or consular certificate, when the travel document or official ID document does not contain data on parentage;
  • Criminal record certificates or equivalent documents issued by the competent judicial authority where you have resided in the last five years (click here);
  • Declaration, under the penalties of the law, of the absence of a criminal record in any country in the five years before the date of application for the residence permit (click here);
  • Birth or marriage certificate to prove the relationship between the applicant and the Brazilian or immigrant beneficiary of the residence permit, or a suitable document that proves the relationship;
  • Identity document of the Brazilian or immigrant who is the beneficiary of a residence permit, with whom the petitioner wishes to reunite;
  • Declaration, under the penalties of the law, that the calling family member resides in Brazil (click here)
  • Documents proving economic dependence, when applicable
  • Proof of the stable union between the applicant and the Brazilian or immigrant who is the beneficiary of the residence permit (click here)
  • Joint declaration of the spouses or companions, under penalties of the law, regarding the continuity of the effective union and cohabitation (click here)
  • Documents proving the guardianship, curatorship, or custody of a Brazilian citizen, when applicable
  • Proof of payment of the residence permit (revenue code 140066, amount R$168.13) and CRNM (revenue code 140120, amount R$204.77) fees, when applicable (to issue the Federal Tax Payment Form, click here);
  • Attention to the observations below (depending on the case, other documents may be required).



  • It is considered a crime, punishable by imprisonment and a fine, to omit, in a public or private document, a statement that should be contained therein, or to insert or cause to be inserted therein a statement that is false or different from the one that should be written, with the purpose of damaging a right, creating an obligation or altering the truth about a legally relevant fact (Art. 299 of the Penal Code);
  • It is at the discretion of the administrative authority responsible for examining the residence permit to accept certificates of criminal records that do not meet the 90-day deadline;
  • It is at the discretion of the competent administrative authority, in case of doubt regarding civil registration, to request updated birth or marriage certificates;
  • When it is not possible for one of the legal guardians of the minor under 18 years old or incapacitated (as in the case of residing in another country or state in Brazil), the legal guardian who shows up at the Federal Police unit must carry a Declaration (respecting the legalization and translation rules) in which the authorization of the absent legal guardian is expressly written, so that the one with the minor or incapacitated can proceed to apply for the Residence Permit in Brazil (click here). The parents can grant a specific power of attorney (mentioning the migratory regularization), indicating the responsible for the minor’s residence request, with a notarized signature;
  • The documents issued abroad must respect the legalization and translation rules. For more information, click here;
  • CHAMANT is the Brazilian citizen (or immigrant who already has a residence permit) with whom the current applicant of the residence permit wishes to have a family reunion. CHALLENGED is the current applicant of the residence permit who wishes to have a family reunion with the Brazilian (or with the immigrant who already has the residence permit). To find out who can be a caller, click here;
  • To ascertain and verify the data required to make a decision (including the proof of family ties), instruction activities can be carried out, such as, for example, personal interviews with all the family members. For this reason and to speed up the processing of your application, it is recommended that the family member CALLED and the family member CALLING appear together at the time of the presentation of the Residence Permit Application;
  • Regardless of the validity stated in the National Registry of Migration Card – CRNM, the Residence Permit for Family Reunion is conditioned to the maintenance of the family relationship that justified it;
  • Specific legislation: Interministerial Ordinance No. 12, of June 14, 2018;
    For more information, check Frequently Asked Questions.

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