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Have you dreamed of retiring to a Garden of Eden?


The Article below compliments to http://www.costarica.com/

Have you dreamed of retiring to a Garden of Eden? Here are some facts about retirement in Costa Rica that could make your dreams very real.

Costa Rica appeals to many for a variety of different reasons. Costa Rica has one of the highest standards of living in Latin America, is the oldest and most stable democratic governments in Latin America and has one of the highest literacy rates in the world (95%). It also has one of the longest life-expectancy rates on earth, 77 years! They must be doing something right in Costa Rica!

Costa Rica is home to more Americans (per capita) than any other country outside of the U.S. and there are many good reasons for this. With a delightful, near perfect tropical climate, low violent-crime rate, stable democratic government and a plethora of outdoor activities to partake in year round, Americans seem to have no trouble adopting Costa Rica as their new home.

Living in Costa Rica among friendly locals, also known as Ticos, allows that “peaceful, easy feeling” to overwhelm you because you NEVER have to worry about a frost and there is always warm sunshine to look forward to, even in the rainy season. Pura Vida!

A Costa Rican Permanent Resident is a foreign national who is granted the privilege of living and working permanently without conditions in Costa Rica.

A Costa Rican Conditional Permanent Resident is a foreign national who is granted the privilege of living in Costa Rica for a restricted period of time subject to specific conditions set by their filing status.

When you file for permanent resident status (PRS), you are granted either permanent resident status (PRS) or conditional permanent resident status (CPRS). The Immigration Department of Costa Rica will make this determination based on how you or your attorney presented your case.

To Become a Permanent Resident of Costa Rica you Must:

   1.     File for permanent resident status (PRS).

   2.     Make a non-refundable deportation security deposit equal to or greater than the current market price of a one-way airline ticket from Costa Rica to the country of your origin once your resident application is approved.

   3.     Pay permanent resident application stamp fees of 15 colones per page.

   4.     Pay resident card issuance fee at 3,000 colones and pay resident card renewal fee at 3,000 colones.

   5.     Live in Costa Rica under the conditional permanent residency status for a specific period of time, and file for Permanent Residency Status on the date that your CPRS expires.        

Because of a reciprocal perpetual friendship treaty between Spain and Costa Rica, citizens of Spain are always granted PRS regardless of the immigration path they undertake to become permanent residents.

The process of filing for PRS takes between four and eight months, depending on the complexity of your case. You can stay in Costa Rica with a valid tourist visa and or passport (See
Visa Resource Center for visa information) while your case is being reviewed.

You have two choices to apply for Permanent Resident Status (PRS):

1) The On-Site Choice: Apply for Permanent Resident Status (PRS) while in Costa Rica

If you are immigrating to Costa Rica through a family member, religious organizations, or as a refugee, you may file for PRS at your nearest Consulate of Costa Rica or at the Immigration Department of Costa Rica in San Jose, Costa Rica.

Once the Immigration Department of Costa Rica receives your application, it will: 

   1.     Fax your legal representative in Costa Rica a receipt notification stating whether or not your application is complete. If it is not complete, it will grant you ten business day for documents issued in Costa Rica or 30 business days for documents issued overseas from the notification issuance date for you to submit the missing documents. If missing documents are not received during that period of time your application will be denied. Once it receives all the missing documents it will issue another notification stating that your application is complete.

   2.     Mail its decision about your application to your legal representative in Costa Rica within four to six months.

   3.     Issue your permanent resident identification card. This process is in person and you must sign the resident identification card at the Immigration Department of Costa Rica

2) The Off-Site Choice: Apply for Permanent Resident Status (PRS) at the nearest Consulate of Costa Rica

You must file for PRS at a Consulate of Costa Rica - except if you are immigrating to Costa Rica through family members, religious organizations, or as a refugee.

The Consulate of Costa Rica where you file must be located:

    *     in your native country

    *     in your country of permanent residency, or

    *     in another country close to your country if there are no Consulates of Costa Rica where you live.

The Off-Site Choice is a multi-step process:

   1.     Legally appoint a person who lives in your country to submit your application in case you can not submit it in person. *

   2.     Legally appoint a person or an attorney who lives in downtown San Jose, Costa Rica to act as your legal representative.

   3.     Obtain all the required documents to apply for permanent resident status (
Required Documents).

   4.     Translate them into Spanish - if they are not issued in Spanish.

   5.    
Authenticate the documents at the nearest Consulate of Costa Rica.

   6.     Submit your application ** for permanent resident status at your nearest Consulate of Costa Rica.

* If you can not go to the Consulate of Costa Rica in person, you may appoint a person or an attorney who lives in your country of residence to submit your permanent residence application on your behalf.

**You must be outside of Costa Rica the day that you or your representative submits your application to the Consulate of Costa Rica. After your application submission date you can enter and exit Costa Rica with a tourist visa - if you require one - while your permanent residence application is reviewed.

You or your attorney in fact (person to whom you gave the power of attorney) must submit your permanent resident application in person to the nearest Consulate of Costa Rica. Consulates of Costa Rica will:

   1.     Review your application and its required documents. (See
Required Documents).

   2.     Request a personal interview with you or your attorney in fact- if they deem necessary.

   3.     Issue a notification for the Immigration Department in Costa Rica stating the name of the person who submitted your application and a detailed list of all the submitted documents.

   4.     Bind and stamp the notification with your application and its required documents.

   5.     Issue, sign, and stamp a payment receipt stating your name, a list of submitted documents, and the total amount of money paid for authenticating all documents included in your application.

   6.     File your application by mailing it (at your own expense) via private courier (i.e. FEDEX, DHL, UPS) to the Immigration Department of Costa Rica.

Once the Immigration Department of Costa Rica receives your application, it will:

   1.    Fax your legal representative in Costa Rica a receipt notification stating whether or not your application is complete. If it is not complete, it will grant you 10 business day for documents issued in Costa Rica or 30 business days for documents issued overseas from the notification issuance date for you to submit the missing documents. If missing documents are not received during that period of time your application will be denied. Once it receives the missing documents it will issue another notification stating that your application is complete.

   2.     Mail its decision about your application to your legal representative in Costa Rica within four to six months.

   3.     Issue your permanent resident identification card.

If you want to know the status of your application you must make inquiries directly to the Immigration Department of Costa Rica in San Jose, Costa Rica via your legal representative. Consulates of Costa Rica will not provide information about the status of permanent residence application.

When you apply for Permanent Resident Status and you are granted PRS you will:

    *     Get a permanent resident identification card (Cedula de Residencia) issued by Immigration of Costa Rica, renewable every year for a period of ten years, and then after every five years.

    *     Be able to live and work in Costa Rica without conditions.

When you apply for Permanent Resident Status and you are granted CPRS you will:

    *     Get a permanent resident identification card (Cedula de Residencia) issued by Immigration of Costa Rica, renewable every year for a period of ten years, and then after every five years.


    *     Be able to live in Costa Rica subject to conditions set by your filing status* for a restricted period of time equal to or greater than the length of your labor contract, your studies, your family aid, or wiring of overseas monies.

* Note: When you file for PRS through investment, retirement, or annuities, you will not be able to work in Costa Rica if you are granted conditional permanent resident status.


More Permanent Residency Info:

Permanent Residency Elegibility

 

Retirement - Relocation Information

 

There are several paths to obtain Permanent Resident Status (PRS) in Costa Rica. Please click the path that applies to you:

  • You are an immediate relative (parents, spouse, single brother, single sister, sons, and/or daughters) of a Costa Rican citizen or a permanent resident of Costa Rica. (See Immigration through a Family Member )
  • You have a Costa Rican company that would like to sponsor you and provide you with permanent employment, or you become the representative of a foreign company in Costa Rica (See Immigration through Employment )

Immigration Through Family Members:

You must have an immediate relative (parent, spouse, a single sister, or a single brother) who is a Costa Rican citizen or a permanent resident of Costa Rica and is willing to petition and sponsor you in Costa Rica. Your brother or sister must be and remain single until your conditions on your permanent resident status are removed.  Please see Permanent Residence Application Required Documents

Immigration Through Employment:

You may obtain permanent resident status, if you have a permanent employment opportunity (i. e. scientist, technicians, upper level managers, business people, or ESL teachers) in Costa Rica. The company must prove that your work experience or knowledge is indispensable for its business.
Please see Permanent Residence Application
Required Documents

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Immigration Through Investment:

You may obtain permanent resident status when you invest a certain amount of money in a specific Costa Rican business or industry.

You will be required to:

  • Invest at least:
  1.  $50,000.00 U.S. dollars in a business of tourism or exportation approved by the Costa Rican government, or
  2.  $100,000.00 U.S. dollars in a reforestation project, or
  3.  $200,000 U.S. dollars in any type of business in Costa Rica

  •  Live in Costa Rica for six months out of the year


No proof of monthly income is required. The Spanish term for this permanent resident status is: "Estatus de Inversionista."
Please see Permanent Residence Application
Required Documents

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Immigration Through Retirement:

You may obtain permanent resident status, if you choose to retire in Costa Rica.

As a retiree, you will be required to:

·        Show proof of retirement (Social Security Benefits)

·        Show proof of monthly income of at least $600 per month from a retirement plan, pension, or a qualified foreign source such as your government.

·        Exchange your monthly income while living in Costa Rica to Costa Rican currency within the state banking system.

·        Live in Costa Rica for at least four (4) months out of the year

·        Maintain a record of money exchange transactions within the state banking system on a yearly basis.

Note: The Spanish term of this permanent resident status is called: "Estatus de Pensionado." If you or your dependants are granted conditional permanent resident status when you file through retirement, you will not be allowed to earn a salary in Costa Rica. You are, however, free to manage your own investments. Please see Permanent Residence Application Required Documents

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Immigration Through Annuities:

If you have annuities (i.e. income from real estate, equipment, bonds, shares, stock, mutual funds, etc. paid in a series of regular payments) you can file for permanent resident status and will be required to:

·        Show proof of income from annuities of at least $1,000 U.S. dollars per month from a foreign or national bank.

·        Provide a certified letter from the foreign or national bank certifying that you will receive such monies. The letter must be renewed every five years.

·        Exchange a minimum of $1,000.00 U.S. dollars per month or $12,000.00 U.S. dollars per year into Costa Rican currency at a state owned bank.

·        Submit proof of currency exchange

·        Live in Costa Rica for at least four months per year

·        Maintain a record of money exchange transactions within the state banking system on a yearly basis.

Note: The Spanish term for this permanent resident status is: "Estatus de Rentista." If you or your dependants are granted conditional permanent resident status when you file through retirement, you will not be allowed to earn a salary in Costa Rica. You are, however, free to manage your own investments.

Permanent Residence Application Required Documents

Permanent Residence Required Documents

 

Retirement - Relocation Information

 

Instructions: Read Me First

Please read all of this document before proceeding to contact any Consulate of Costa Rica.

When you have all required documents issued in your home country ready, submit your application at the Immigration Department of Costa Rica or at the
Consulate of Costa Rica nearest you.

Consulates of Costa Rica require you to submit all required documents for your permanent residence application via certified mail or to drop them off in person. Upon receipt of your application, they will review your application and authenticate any documents (see
authentication requirements) that require it within five (5) business days. Then, they will schedule an interview with you or your attorney-in-fact (if you can not show up in person) to sign your permanent residence application before the Consul. And finally, they will mail your application to a Visa Filing location in Costa Rica.

You must submit each of the following documents for you and each of your dependents. If you are a famliy applying for permanent resident status, each of the members of the family must submit an individual application and required documents in one package. Parents must sign applications on behalf of minors (dependents younger than 17 years old).

You may submit your application incomplete, however, you will be required later on to submit all missing documents directly to the Immigration Department of Costa Rica via your attorney-in-fact (person to whom you gave a power of attorney) in Costa Rica.

All powers of attorney templates and permanent residence applications contained on this web site are fully compliant with the Immigration Department of Costa Rica's requirements. They should be accepted by any Consulate of Costa Rica in the world.

Required Documents:

Here are the required documents that you and your dependants* must enclose with your permanent residence application. Some documents must be issued in your home country and others in Costa Rica.

·        Documents Issued in your Home Country

·        Police Record Documents

·        Income Source Certification


* Dependants include: your spouse,  children up to 18 years old, and son(s) and/or daughter(s) attending a college or univeristy up to 25 years old.

Documents Issued In Your Home Country:

Note:
PRA = Permanent Residence Application;
PRS= Permanent Resident Status

   1.     PRA Form:
PRA for investors, annuity recipients, or retirees (please print it and fill it out in Spanish. Please read its instructions first. Consulates of Costa Rica should accept it. Acrobat Reader is required to view or print this form in Portable Document Format (PDF).)


   2.    
PRA Submission Power of Attorney: (please print it and fill it out in Spanish*. Please read its instructions first. Acrobat Reader is required to view or print this form in Portable Document Format (PDF).)


*It must be written in Spanish stating personal and contact information of your attorney (the person to whom you give the power of attorney). This power of attorney is for someone to submit your Permanent Residence Application on your behalf at your nearest Consulate of Costa Rica - only in case you cannot submit and sign your application in person. This power of attorney must be notarized by a U.S./Canadian public notary, and authenticated by a Consul of Costa Rica.


   3.    
Standard PRA Follow-Up Procedures Power of Attorney for one person or PRA Follow-Up Procedures Power of Attorney for a family with children under 18 years old (please print the one that applies to you and fill it out in Spanish. Please read its instructions first. Acrobat Reader is required to view or print this form in Portable Document Format (PDF).)

*  It must be written in Spanish stating the contact information of your power of attorney attorney - a citizen or perment resident of Costa Rica - living legally and permanently in downtown San Jose, Costa Rica authorizing him/her to act on your behalf at the Immigration Department in Costa Rica regarding your case. It must be signed before a Consul of Costa Rica or authenticated at the Consulate of Costa Rica.

   4.     Original Birth Certificate (yours and that of your dependents, if any)

   5.     Police Record (yours and that of your dependants older than 16 years old. See
Police Record Documents)

   6.     Marriage Certificate (if applicable)

   7.     Academic degrees or equivalent (if applicable)

   8.     Certified copies of all passport pages issued by a Consul of Costa Rica, a Costa Rican notary public in Costa Rica, or your home country notary public ** (yours and that of your dependents)

   9.     Proof of enrollment in an accredited School/University - for any of your dependants who are students attending a School/University and are between 19 and 25 years old.

  10.     Income Source Certification (See
Income Source Certification)

  11.     A recent face forward view passport sized photograph (Enclose four original photographs; Costa Rican passport size photographs are 4.5 cm high X 3.5 cm wide (1.77 in. high X 1.37 in. wide)(yours and that of your dependants)

 

** If certification is issued by your home country notary public, you will be required to authenticate the signature of the foreign notary public at the Consulate of Costa Rica. Thus, it is less expensive and more convenient to let the Consul of Costa Rica issue your certification.

All of the above documents -except the photographs - from your home country must be

  • Translated into Spanish (either in your home country by a Registered translator, by a Costa Rican translator certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Costa Rica, or by a Costa Rican notary public who speaks the language and certifies the translation)
  • Authenticated by a Consul of Costa Rica at your nearest Consulate of Costa Rica
  • Issued thirty days prior to your application submission date
  • No more than three months old after their issuance date. If the document validity expires before your application is submitted, your application will be denied and you will need to file a new one

 

 


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