The new Law 9996, created to attract foreign investors, rentiers and pensioners came into effect after being signed by President Carlos Alvarado. The law modifies the previous conditions established since 2009 in Law 8764 for Immigration and Foreigners. The changes offer more advantages to foreigners who wish to obtain residency under the categories of Investors, Rentiers or Pensioners. The updated law allows for less demanding requirements to reactivate the post-pandemic economy.
Expats with residence status allows them to live in Costa Rica without having to leave the country every 90 days or request a new tourist visa that could be rejected by authorities. In the Retiree category (Pensionado), people applying for residency must be receiving a monthly pension of more than $1,000. That lifetime pension must be issued by an authorized authority.
The pensionado must visit Costa Rica at least once a year. They can claim a spouse and any dependents under the age of 25. But, they cannot work in the country as an employee, nor can they own a company and receive returns or profit. Rentiers (Rentista) must have by a period of no less than two years of a stable and permanent monthly rental income of at least $2,500 received from abroad. The person must visit Costa Rica at least once a year. The person can claim a spouse and any dependents under the age of 25. But, they cannot work as an employee, nor can they own a company and receive payouts or profits.
To be qualified as an Investor (Inversionista) type resident, one must have a minimum investment of $150,000 in a property or a company. The investor must visit Costa Rica at least once a year. They can claim a spouse and any dependents under the age of 25. An investor is allowed to work in their company in the country as an employee or owner, meaning they can receive dividends from the company. In addition, the law allows other series of advantages such as: