Costa Rica’s Digital Nomad Visa
By Daniela Diaz Polo, Corporate and Immigration Lawyer in Costa Rica
The Legislative Assembly approved in second debate the law project 22.215 called “Law to Attract Workers and Remote Providers of Services of International Character”. This law creates a series of exemptions and benefits for foreign workers who wish to migrate to Costa Rica, and which are known as “Digital Nomads”.
What is the Objective of this Law?
Its main objective is to promote the attraction of workers and service providers that are carried out remotely, in order to encourage long-stay visitation in Costa Rica and increase the expenditure of resources of foreign origin in the country.
REQUIREMENTS AND PROCEDURE:
Those who wish to opt for a stay as a Worker or Remote Service Provider, must present:
- Proof that you receive a stable monthly remuneration, fixed income or an average monthly income,
during the last year, for an amount equal to or greater than $3,000 USD. If you choose to apply for the benefits also for the family group, the amount of income may be validly integrated among the members and must reach the sum of $4,000 USD per month. In either case, it must be income that can continue to be received, even if the person is not in his or her country of origin. 2. Obtain a medical services policy that covers the applicant for the entire duration of their stay in the country. Likewise, all members of the family group must be covered, if they choose to apply for inclusion as beneficiaries. 3. Make the payment, for a single time, for the granting of a non-resident visa, as a Worker or Remote Service Provider. The amount will be determined by regulation. 4. Any other requirement arising from the General Law on Migration and Aliens, its Regulations and regulations to the new law.
The proof of income may be carried out through bank statements that support the necessary income or through other means of proof that will be established via regulation. Once the complete requirements are presented, the Management will have a period of fifteen calendar days to resolve.
PAID WORK IN COSTA RICA
Beneficiaries of the law may not engage in paid work or services in Costa Rica.
The status shall be granted for one year, extendable for a single period of one additional year. In order to authorize such an extension, the beneficiary must have stayed in the country for at least one hundred and eighty days during the year originally granted.
INCOME TAX BENEFITS
Beneficiaries will have full exemption from income tax. In no case the beneficiaries will be considered as habitual residents of the country for tax purposes, nor shall the income they receive from abroad be considered as from Costa Rican sources.
BENEFITS RELATING TO THE IMPORTATION OF EQUIPMENT
The beneficiaries will be exempt from the payment of all taxes on the importation of basic personal computer, computer, telecommunications or similar equipment necessary to carry out their duties or the provision of their services.
The driver’s license granted in the beneficiary’s country of origin and in force will be valid for the purposes of driving in Costa Rica.
OPENING BANK ACCOUNTS
Beneficiaries will be able to open savings accounts in the banks of the national banking system.
TERM OF BENEFITS
All the benefits established will govern for the same terms of the immigration benefit granted.
As it is a direct reform of the General Law on Migration and Aliens, these benefits will remain in force until it is expressly revoked by a subsequent law. The Law Project has now been sent to the Executive Power for signature by the President of the Republic and will subsequently be published. The law also provides for the creation of special digital windows for the attention of requests in these categories.
Learn More About Becoming a Digital Nomad in Costa Rica
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