On December 1, 2022, the bill titled “Reform to Articles 7 section 7) and 80 of the General Migration Law, Law No. 8764, of August 19, 2009, and its reforms, to promote the inclusion of investors, rentiers and pensioners in the Costa Rican territory” was presented to the Economic and Finance Commission of the Costa Rican Legislative Assembly.
The objective of this bill is to reform the aforementioned articles of the General Law of Migration and Immigration with the intention of promoting the inclusion of these subcategories of migration in the Costa Rican territory and thus dynamizing the Costa Rican economy by attracting economic resources from other countries.
It is important to highlight that this bill is a continuation of the “Law for the Attraction of Investors, Rentiers, and Pensioners” (Law No. 9996) of July 5, 2021, with the aim of continuing to incentivize the attraction of the healthiest segments that can be distinguished in terms of migration, and thereby simplifying the investment of foreigners in the country.
In the global context of investment attraction, Costa Rica ranks as the second-best destination for foreign direct investment (FDI) in tourism, as it offers value propositions for investors and those looking for an ideal place to retire. In turn, Costa Rica has been able to capitalize on the aspects that traditionally differentiate it from other countries, such as its political and social stability, good climate, diverse geography, and having 6.5% of the world’s biodiversity.
Despite its attractive characteristics, one of the major challenges facing Costa Rican legislation in terms of migration is the obligation imposed on foreigners to register with the CCSS, commonly referred to as “Caja”. This is due to the high monthly percentages that, in many cases, exceed terms of reasonableness and proportionality, leading many foreigners to lose interest and decide to withdraw their residency in the country.
Moreover, the interest of investors, rentiers, and pensioners is mostly not to use the medical services of the Costa Rican Social Security Fund. Therefore, it is not sensible to impose disproportionate burdens that would discourage them from their desire to reside in the country, by having to face high fees relative to the economic income or investments that they provide in their migration records.
In accordance with the aforementioned, the bill in question seeks to reform these articles so that investors, rentiers, and pensioners are exempt from the obligation of insurance and contribution to social security, without limiting them from registering if that is their desire.
Finally, it should be noted that this is a mere bill, there is a whole legislative process to be carried out in which the approval or rejection of it will be determined. For our team of legal advisors at Lexincorp Costa Rica, it will be a pleasure to keep you informed about the progress of such an important project. Any inquiries can be sent to us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written by: Jimena Muñoz