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There are several residency categories available if you are considering applying for residency in Costa Rica. Some of the most common migratory categories and their specific requirements are described below; however, general requirements are applicable to all of them.

Temporary Residence and Work Permits

Temporary Residence – Pensionado

• Requires proof of US$1000 per month income from permanent pension source or retirement fund.
• Must remain in Costa Rica at least 1 day per year.
• Can claim spouse and dependents under 18 years of age.
• Cannot work as an employee.
• Can own a company and receive dividends.

The cost of our services for the Pensionado category is: $1,250.00

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: $750.00
  • Dependents: $375.00 Per Dependent

Temporary Residence – Rentista

• Requires proof of deposit of US $60,000 in an approved bank, with $2,500 withdrawn every month.  This requirement needs to be met during application AND every subsequent renewal (every 2 years) until you apply for Permanent Residence.
• OR proof of US$2500 per month unearned (cannot be employment income), verifiable, stable, permanent income such as bank interest, annuity, public company dividends for at least 2 years.
• Must remain in Costa Rica at least 1 day per year.
• Can claim spouse and dependents under 18 years of age.
• Cannot work as an employee.
• Can own a company and receive dividends.

The cost of our services for the Rentista category is: $1,500.00

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: $750.00
  • Dependents: $375.00 Per Dependent

Temporary Residence – Investor

• Investment of US$200,000 in a business or property.
• Must remain in Costa Rica at least 1 day per year.
• Can claim spouse and dependents under 18 years of age.
• Income allowed from the project.
• Can own a company and receive dividends.
Click here to see some great homes for sale that meet the requirements for the Investor category. www.GapRealEstate.com

The cost of our services for the Investor category is: $1,500.00

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: $750.00
  • Dependents: $375.00 Per Dependent

Temporary Residence – Spouse of a Costa Rican Citizen

• Must provide documentary proof of the marriage’s validity, such as photos (of the wedding and other events), proof of cohabitation, and communication between spouses (such as phone records, e-mails etc).
• Can work.
• Can own a company and receive income.

The cost of our services for the Spouse of a Costa Rican Citizen category is: $1,000.00

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: N/A
  • Dependents: $375.00 Per Dependent

Work Permit – Hired by Physical Person

***This category is only available to domestic and agricultural workers***

• Signed letter from intended employer, acting as guarantor.
• Authenticated job offer indicating functions, hours, and salary, signed by employer.
• Proof of employer’s economic solvency (such as income certification by Certified Public Accountant)
• Must remain in Costa Rica at least 1 day per year.
Cannot claim spouse and dependents under 18 years of age.

The cost of our services for the Work Permit category is: $850.00

Company Representative

• Company incorporation documents
• Business license from corresponding municipality
• Business sanitation permit from Ministry of Health
• Income certification by Certified Public Accountant
• Proof of payment/registration of company income taxes
• Proof of Caja (CCSS) registration of company
• Must remain in Costa Rica at least 1 day per year.
Cannot claim spouse and dependents under 18 years of age.

The cost of our services for the Company Representative category is: $1500.00

Permanent Residence and Citizenship

Permanent Residence

• May apply after three years as a temporary resident.
• OR first-degree relative status with a Costa Rican Citizen (having a Costa Rican child or Costa Rican parents — although having Costa Rican parents may qualify you to opt for citizenship)
• Can claim spouse and dependents under 18 years of age.
• Can work.
• Can own a company and receive income.

The legal fees for the Permanent Residence category are: $1,000.00 for new applicants, $850.00 for eligible temporary residents

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: $750.00
  • Dependent’s: $375.00 Per Child

Citizenship by Residence

• 7 years living in Costa Rica as a resident with a cédula (5 years if you are a citizen of a Central American country, a citizen of certain Latin American countries, or a citizen of Spain by birth)
• You must prove you have lived in Costa Rica for the accumulated time through the record of immigration entries and exits
• 2 character witness declarations
• Proof of financial means of living such as an income certification from a CPA
• Completion of citizenship test – Spanish and social studies

The legal fees for the Citizenship by Residence category are: $1,000.00

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: N/A
  • Children: N/A

Citizenship by Marriage

• 2 years living in Costa Rica married to a Costa Rican citizen
• You must prove you have lived in Costa Rica for the accumulated time through the record of immigration entries and exits

The legal fees for the Citizenship by Marriage category are: $1,000.00

Additional costs (if applicable):

  • Spouse: N/A
  • Children: N/A
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