About 100,000 foreigners from the United States choose Costa Rica as their permanent place of residence. Only about half of these foreign residents from the U.S. have followed the legal path of residency, while the rest live in a state of “perpetual tourism.” Long-term tourists, however, have seen their lives become more complicated in the past few years.
Law 8764, as it pertains to Immigration and foreigners, unintentionally creates the “perpetual tourist” immigration status that many foreigners take advantage of. The relevant section of the law is Article 33, section 3, which directs all foreigners to exit the country upon expiration of their visas. That section states tourists must either exit the country upon expiration of their visas, or else pay a fine equivalent to $100 for each month overstayed. Failure to abide by this section could prevent the tourist from getting a visa for a period equal to three times the amount of time overstayed.
Residency: The Alternative to Perpetual Tourism
Constant Visa runs to bordering Panama and Nicaragua gets old fast. There is a better solution to all this hassle and uncertainty, and it involves applying for resident status. There are plenty strategies and approaches to residency.
Costa Rica offers feasible options for foreigners who wish to become legal residents. There are different immigrant categories, which also include students and workers who contracted for specific projects by companies doing business in Costa Rica.
If you would like to apply for legal permanent residency in Costa Rica and have all of your immigration questions answered, please contact us at +506-8373-2085, or complete our free assessment questionnaire.