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RESIDENCY CATEGORIES IN COSTA RICA:

All foreigners residing in Costa Rica must have a regular immigration status.  For this purpose foreigners may opt for one of the following residency categories. Our lawyers in Costa Rica and qualified personnel will expand this information upon your request with no extra charge:

Residency as Pensioner or Retiree:

  • It requires proof of income of US$1,000 per month from a permanent pension or retirement fund.
  • The applicant must remain in the country four months a year.
  • The applicant may cover his or her spouse and children under 18 as dependents.
  • Unable to work as an employee but can own a company and receive income.

Residency as Annuitant:

  • It requires proof of income of US$2,500 monthly for a minimum of two years, guaranteed by a banking institution. You can consult the text required for the letter asked by the immigration department in our offices. It is also accepted a deposit of US$60,000 in an approved bank in Costa Rica.
  • The applicant must remain in the country four months a year.
  • The applicant may cover his or her spouse and children under 18 as dependents.
  • Unable to work as an employee but s/he can own a company and receive income.

Residency as Investor:

  • It requires investment of US$200,000 approved in sectors such as tourism and exports, US$200,000 in reforestation, or US$200,000 in any other business.
  • The applicant must remain in the country six months a year.
  • The applicant cannot include spouse and children under 18 as dependents.
  • The applicant can get paid as an employee.
  • The applicant can own a company and receive income.

Residency as Company Representative:

  • The applicant must be a director of a company meeting certain specific requirements; such as employing a minimum number of local employees, as established by the Labor Law, with financial statements certified by an accountant
  • The applicant must remain in the country six months a year.
  • The applicant cannot claim wives and children under 18 as dependents.
  • The applicant may receive a salary in the company.
  • The applicant can own a company and receive income.

Permanent Residencies:

  • Based upon family relationship with a Costa Rican citizen or a legal resident. It includes spouse, children, parents, brother and sister according to different rules.
  • The applicant must visit Costa Rica once a year.
  • The applicant cannot include spouse and children under 18 as dependents.
  • The applicant can own a company and receive income.

Residency as a Religious Representative:

  • Letter of the legal representative of the religious congregation, indicating the time and the reasons why the foreign person will be in the country.
  • It is a special category and it is not granted residency card.
  • The applicant cannot work in a different activity from the one approved by the immigration department.
  • Proof of the legal registration of the religious congregation to which the foreigner belongs to.

Sports temporary residency:

  • The sportsman or sportswoman must be duly accredited by the National Sports Council
  • Letter to the Director of Immigration, signed by the legal representative of the company requesting the entry of the foreigner or the National Sports Council.
  • Proof of the legal registration of the sport organization or the National Sports Council,
  • Employment contract signed with a sports organization to provide the services, which will indicate the real wage to be earned and the activities to be developed.

Temporary Residency for correspondents and staff of news agencies:

  • Letter addressed to the Director of Immigration, signed by the legal representative of the news agency requesting the entry of the foreigner.
  • Report of the Labour and Social Security Ministry, in which it is indicated that the foreign workforce does not displace national or resident employment.

Temporary residency for scientists, professionals, technicians, and their dependents:

  • Letter addressed the Director of Immigration, signed by the legal representative of the company requesting the entry of the foreigner.

 

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costa rica Residency Categories

Permanent Residency: Direct Family Relationship
Based on Direct Family Relationship with a Costa Rican Citizen. Spouse, mother/father, son/daughter, brother or sister. More...
Temporary Residency as a Pensioner (Retiree)
Based upon the income from a pension or similar of at least US$1000 a month. More...
Change of Immigration Category or Immigration Status
Procedure available for residents who already have a residency approved under one of the regimes and want to change to a different one. More...
Temporary Residency as Annuitant
Based upon proving a monthly income of at least US$2500 for a period of 2 years. The applicant must have a current visa. More...
Student's Permit
In order to study in Costa Rica it is required to obtain a special residency permit for students and to be studying in an academic institution recognized by the Education Ministry. More...
Companies Recognition
Companies working under a special export regimen, tourism companies, financial institutions, multinationals. More...
Costa Rica Immigration Updates
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Additional Services
incorporation services

Company Formation and incorporation services.

Acquisition of shelf-companies. List of shelf companies available.

Business Start Ups and License Acquisition for new corporations in order to start operations in Costa Rica.

Legalization of documents
Legalization of Costa Rican titles and documents (apostille services). All certifications are originals and issued by the proper authority in Costa Rica. If the document is going to be used abroad it will be legalized by the Foreign Affairs Ministry and the corresponding Consulate so that it has full legal effects anywhere in the world.

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