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Thread: Help with the correct legal term

 
  1. #1
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    Default Help with the correct legal term

    Hi all, first time poster so apologies in advance for any newbie errors...

    I am writing a document for multinational companies here in Colombia which details the legal rights and obligations of non Colombians who are hired or contracted by the multinational to work in Colombia, and in the interests of accuracy and consistency I am looking for the best term to describe such workers. Here are some terms I am considering
    a) Non-national: instinctively my choice but I have read that some consider this term oxymoronic in that it may imply “having no nationality”
    b) Foreigner: The closest translation of the “extranjero” we would use in Spanish but it doesn’t seem appropriate to me
    c) Resident alien: ?
    d) Any other/better suggestions


    Thanks in advance

    Noel

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    Hi Noel. Rather than non-national how about foreign national? Foreigner sounds a little unwelcoming. Resident alien, in the US, is a legal definition of a person with permanent resident status, just short of citizenship. Don't know about Colombia but it would not apply to foreign workers who are temporarily contracted to work in the country. You might also consider non-resident worker/employee (non-resident in US immigration jargon is a person in the country legally but without permanent residency status); foreign contract worker or non-resident contract employee (my preference).
    Last edited by vicente; 07-12-2013 at 02:55 AM.
    vicente

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    I suppose you could call them non-Colombian? non-citizen? Ok, that's all I have
    vicente

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    Quote Originally Posted by vicente View Post
    Hi Noel. Rather than non-national how about foreign national? Foreigner sounds a little unwelcoming. Resident alien, in the US, is a legal definition of a person with permanent resident status, just short of citizenship. Don't know about Colombia but it would not apply to foreign workers who are temporarily contracted to work in the country. You might also consider non-resident worker/employee (non-resident in US immigration jargon is a person in the country legally but without permanent residency status); foreign contract worker or non-resident contract employee (my preference).

    Appreciate the prompt and informative reply Vicente, I might go with foreign national...will think about it.

    Gracias

    Noel

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    Just thought maybe I could just go with expatriate!!

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    You could! In its broadest sense, an expatriate is any person living in a different country from where they are a citizen and this definition fits your need. I'm hesitant to use it because 'expatriation' has been used in a legal sense to mean renunciation of allegiance to one's country and to me, it sounds as if the person might have renounced, or lost citizenship. I've also often heard it used to describe people who have retired to another country and are legal residents. Does "non-Colombians" include persons who have legal residence in Colombia or is the document referring to foreigners temporarily in the country on a work permit?
    Last edited by vicente; 07-13-2013 at 11:54 PM.
    vicente

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    Quote Originally Posted by vicente View Post
    . Does "non-Colombians" include persons who have legal residence in Colombia or is the document referring to foreigners temporarily in the country on a work permit?
    The document I am revising would refer to the latter, "foreigners temporarily in the country on a work permit?"

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    In that case, it's your choice but I would not use expatriate. In my opinion the simplest choice would be foreign national. Even though we agree that foreigner might carry a subtle unwanted connotation you might still want to consider it.
    vicente

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    Non-resident contract employee sounds pretty good to me, I agree with vicente. You possibly want to use something that is shorter but in my opinion that sounds good.

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    Default Re: Help with the correct legal term

    Thanks for your input kvillanueva. It's always better to have more than one member offering advice and I was beginning to feel lonesome here.
    vicente

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