February 9, 2024

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Argentina Residency: Your Ultimate Guide for 2024

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Argentina Residency: Your Ultimate Guide for 2024

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"Argentina is the country of the future – and always will be"

Argentina has historically been a magnet for investors seeking new opportunities in South America. The country's history of immigration dates back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when it experienced waves of European immigrants, particularly from Italy, Germany, and Spain, contributing to its diverse and multicultural society. Over the years, Argentina has continued to attract people from various parts of the world, drawn by its promising economic prospects, educational opportunities, and high quality of life. The capital city, Buenos Aires, with its cosmopolitan atmosphere, serves as a melting pot of cultures, reflecting the nation's openness to diversity.

For those considering a more permanent move, Argentina offers various residency programs designed to accommodate different needs and circumstances. The country has implemented policies to encourage foreign investment, skilled professionals, and retirees to settle and contribute to its development. Navigating the residency process in Argentina involves meeting specific requirements and adhering to the legal framework, making it essential for prospective immigrants to understand the available options and choose the one that aligns with their goals for relocation.

Benefits of Argentina Residency

Obtaining residency in Argentina can provide several benefits, offering individuals and their families various opportunities. Here are some potential advantages of becoming a resident in Argentina:

  1. Diverse Residency Options

Argentina provides diverse residency options, including work visas, retirement visas, and investment visas, catering to a wide range of individuals. The application processes are generally straightforward, and the minimum investment requirements (approx. USD 5,000)  are often reasonable compared to other countries.

  1. Path to Citizenship

Residency in Argentina can lead to permanent residency and citizenship. After a period of residing in the country, usually 2 years, individuals may become eligible for citizenship. 

  1. Visa-free Travel

Argentine citizens can enjoy visa-free travel to more than 165 countries, including EU, Mexico, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, etc. This freedom of movement facilitates international business opportunities and enhances global mobility.

  1. Economic Opportunities

Argentina is a country with a rich and diverse economy. There are opportunities for foreign investment in sectors like agriculture, technology, and renewable energy. The government encourages foreign investors through various incentives, facilitating economic growth and development. Moreover, the employment rate in Argentina is 61.15% in 2023.

  1. Quality of Life

Argentina offers a high standard of living with access to quality healthcare, education, and overall well-being. The country's healthcare system is well-developed, and there are educational institutions of international repute. Argentina receives a score of 110.87 on the 2023 Quality of Life Index.

  1. Low Crime Rates

Argentina has the world's lowest crime rate of 4.38, ranking it sixty-second in the world. Effective law enforcement agencies contribute to maintaining a safe environment for residents. Additionally, the country's focus on community policing and crime prevention programs has played a crucial role in sustaining its commendable low crime rates.

  1. Language Accessibility

While Spanish is the official language, many Argentinians are proficient in English, especially in urban areas. This linguistic accessibility can be beneficial for expatriates and make the transition to living in Argentina smoother. More than 5 million citizens are native English-speakers, which reflects almost 11% of the Argentine population.

  1. Stable Currency

The Argentine peso, while subject to fluctuations, provides a relatively stable currency environment. This stability can be attractive to individuals and investors looking for financial security. However, the new government plans to eliminate the central bank and adopt the dollar as Argentina's currency, putting the peso at risk.

  1. Tax Advantages

Argentina has a relatively straightforward tax system. Income taxes are generally competitive, and there are opportunities for tax exemptions. The tax rate on net taxable business profits is 25%. The general tax rate for VAT is 19%. The Personal Income Tax Rate in Argentina stands at 35%. 

  1. Dual Citizenship

Argentina recognizes dual citizenship, allowing residents to maintain citizenship in Argentina while also holding citizenship in another country. This flexibility provides individuals with the rights and privileges of both nations. Having dual citizenship in Argentina opens up opportunities for international travel, business, and cultural exchange, fostering a greater sense of global connectivity for its citizens.

  1. Retirement Benefits

Argentina offers retirement visas with potential benefits such as tax exemptions and access to healthcare services. The country's retirement system aims to provide financial security for retirees. In March 2023, Argentina's Lower House passed legislation establishing a payment plan for the approximately 800,000 citizens of retirement age who do not have the years of retirement contributions to access this benefit.

Argentinian Temporary Residency

In Argentina, temporary residency represents a significant legal status tailored for foreigners who intend to establish their legal residency within the country for a specified period, as stipulated in Article 23 of Law 25,871. This form of residency offers a medium-term solution, allowing foreigners to stay for up to 3 years in the country. 

The Argentinian temporary residency framework encompasses several categories designed to cater to diverse individual circumstances. These categories include, but are not limited to, work-related residency, family reunification, and participation in specific activities contributing to the country's growth and development. 

For individuals seeking temporary residency in Argentina, the issuance of a temporary Residence Card (ID) is a pivotal step in solidifying their legal status. This identification document not only serves as proof of legal residency but also facilitates essential transactions, such as opening bank accounts and accessing various services. Possession of this ID is instrumental in navigating the day-to-day aspects of life in Argentina.

Moreover, individuals holding temporary residency are able to get permanent residency once they have met the necessary criteria and completed the typical duration of stay (usually 3 years). This pathway provides a structured and transparent process for those seeking a more lasting connection to Argentina.

Argentina's Permanent Residency

In Argentina, obtaining permanent residency is a two-step process, typically requiring a period of temporary residency before eligibility for permanent residency. The legal framework for this is outlined in Article 22 of Law 25,871. Individuals seeking permanent residency must first obtain temporary residency, which is typically granted after meeting specific criteria such as work or family ties in Argentina. After holding temporary residency for a minimum of 3 years, individuals become eligible to apply for permanent residency.

Permanent residency in Argentina signifies a residence status without an expiration date. Once granted, it allows individuals to reside in the country indefinitely, and they are issued a permanent ID card. This status grants foreign nationals the same rights and privileges as Argentine citizens, with the exception of voting rights. 

While the law does not mandate a particular physical presence, applicants are recommended to substantiate the legality of their residence. Experts advise that applicants showcase their legal ties to Argentina by spending a minimum of 180 days annually within the country. This entails providing evidence that Argentina is indeed the applicant's primary place of residence, which helps facilitate the citizenship application.

The process of obtaining permanent residency reflects Argentina's commitment to a well-regulated immigration system, ensuring that individuals who have demonstrated a sustained connection to the country over a specified period can secure their place within its borders permanently.

Most Popular Argentina Residency Visas

Based on our experience and practice, the majority of our clients prefer to apply for the following types of Argentine residency visas: 

Argentina Student Visa

The Argentina Student Visa is designed for foreign nationals intending to pursue recognized secondary, tertiary, or specialized studies as regular students in officially recognized public or private educational institutions. Temporary residency is initially granted for 1 year and is extendable.

Foreigners entering Argentina for secondary, tertiary, university, or recognized specialized studies as regular students They have to provide the following documents: 

  • A valid passport or alternative documents. 
  • Argentine criminal record certificate for individuals over 16.
  • Certificate proving no criminal record from countries of residence in the last 3 years for individuals over 16.
  • Proof of address.
  • Regular admission to an officially recognized educational institution.

There are specific requirements for temporary student status, as outlined below:

  • Full-time student: proof of electronic registration.
  • Intern: Proof of electronic registration, international agreement, or letter of acceptance.
  • Scholarship Holder: Proof of electronic registration, international agreement, or letter of acceptance.
  • Minors: People under 18 need a legalized birth certificate, parental authorization, and, if parents are abroad, a designated guardian with legal residence proof in Argentina.

Educational institutions must be registered with the National Directorate, granting proof of registration to the interested party detailing the type of study to be studied.

Argentina Work Visa

The Argentina Work Visa is designed for foreigners entering the country for lawful, paid activities under an employment relationship. They need to have the Entry Permit before applying for a Work Visa. The employing company must be authorized to hire foreign workers and registered with the National Immigration Office. It is critical to demonstrate the following:

Furthermore, the pre-labor contract has to specify such information as:

  • Personal data of the parties.
  • Tasks, working hours, and duration of the employment relationship.
  • Remuneration adheres to the collective labor agreement.
  • CUIT number of the employer (accompanied by power of attorney if represented by a third party).
  • Signatures certified by a public notary or the National Directorate of Migration.
  • Model employment contract.

When applying, you can also arrange visas for dependents, requiring similar paperwork, excluding employment-related records.

A temporary residence permit  is initially granted for 1 year and can be extended. 

Argentina Medical Visa

The Argentina Medical Visa is for foreigners seeking temporary residence for complex or high-risk medical treatments in public or private health facilities in the country. The requirements for medical treatment include the following:

  • Clinical history detailing the pathology and treatment in an Argentine health establishment.
  • If treated in a public hospital, the history must be subscribed by the institution's director.
  • If treated privately, the professional's signature must be certified by the Argentine Ministry of Health.
  • For minors undergoing medical treatment, the residency extends to accompanying direct relatives, legal representatives, or guardians. People under 18 need a legalized birth certificate and parental authorization.

Argentina medical residency is granted for 1 year and is renewable. For those seeking medical treatment in Argentina, a medical visa can be obtained in advance from an Argentina consular office in the U.S. Argentina is a popular destination for medical tourism due to affordable prices and high-quality services, with some specialists being U.S.-trained.

Argentina Retirement Visa

The Argentina Retirement Visa, known as the Pensionado Visa, is for foreigners receiving a regular and permanent pension from a government, international organizations, or private companies for services provided abroad.

The requirements for Pensioner Status are as follows:

  • Proof from a government, international organization, or private company certifying the regular and permanent receipt of a pension equal to or greater than five times the minimum vital and mobile wages.
  • The minimum monthly wage is ARS 156,000 (USD 404) as of December 1, 2023.

As a result, your monthly pension income has to be at least ARS 780,000 (USD 950)*. The visa is granted for 1 year, renewable for 3 years, with the option to apply for permanent residency. Argentine citizenship is attainable after 2 consecutive years of residency.

*The exchange rate is ARS 823.501 per USD 1.

Argentina Financier Visa

The Argentina Financier Visa, also known as the Rentista or Independent Means Visa, is a 1-year visa renewable for up to 3 years, allowing eventual permanent residency. Foreigners qualify for this type of visa if they pay for their stay in Argentina with resources brought from abroad, income produced, or any lawful income from external sources.

Requirements to prove renter status are as below:

  • Prove monthly income equivalent to or greater than five times the minimum living and mobile wages. It is recommended to have at least USD 2,000.
  • Demonstrate that income is a benefit from assets incorporated into the applicant's assets (financial instruments, real estate, company participations), excluding remuneration for personal work.
  • Show funds' entry into the country through authorized banking or financial institutions.
  • Provide bank statements demonstrating a balance of at least USD 24,000. 
  • Working as someone's employee is not allowed; however, self-employment or business ownership are permitted.

Please keep in mind that each renewal requires proving income sufficiency to support the stay in Argentina. After 2 years of residency in Argentina, applicants can apply for Argentine citizenship.

Argentina Investment Visa

The Argentina Investment Visa is designed for foreigners investing a minimum of ARS 1,500,000 (approximately USD 2,000 at the exchange rate of ARS 823.501  per 1 USD) in a productive, commercial, or service activity in the country. 

Investors have to submit the following documentation: 

  • Application note with personal details, reasons for the request, and requested length of stay.
  • Commercial or professional background.
  • Investment project signed by the migrant, detailing the activity, proving the origin and legality of funds, and their entry into the country through authorized financial institutions. 
  • Property title, securities, or corporate participation documents proving the effective investment of entered capital.
  • Photocopy of the complete passport.
  • Funds must come from a legal source and be held in BCRA-authorized financial institutions (BCRA = the Central Bank of the Argentine Republic).

The Ministry of Economy evaluates project feasibility, legal aspects, and economic and financial sustainability. The National Directorate of Migration grants temporary residence, setting a peremptory deadline for investment realization.

The visa is initially valid for 1 year, renewable for up to 3 years, with the option to apply for permanent residency and citizenship. 

The government is reportedly working on a new program for investors, considering the challenges with the current Investment Visa.

Argentina's Digital Nomad Visa

The Argentina Digital Nomad Visa offers a 180-day residence, extendable for the same period, for those providing remote services using technology. Designed specifically for digital nomads, this visa caters to individuals who wish to reside and work remotely in Argentina. This visa is applicable to freelancers as well as those employed by foreign companies with no physical presence in Argentina. Eligibility for this visa is extended to foreign nationals coming from countries that do not necessitate a tourist visa for entry into Argentina.

It is important to note, however, that this particular visa does not serve as a pathway to obtaining permanent residency or citizenship.

Requirements to prove digital nomad status are described below:

  • Signed request detailing personal data and independent work activities to be undertaken.
  • Brief Curriculum Vitae, highlighting experience in the field of work and educational background.
  • Documentation proving the activity (contract, company guarantee, proof of labor demand, income, or fee receipts).
  • At least one reference related to the occupation.

Although the minimum income is not specified, it is recommended that it be around USD 2,500 per month.

Argentina Residency from USA

Argentina has become an increasingly attractive destination for US citizens seeking residency for various reasons. The country boasts a high quality of life, a stable economy, excellent healthcare, and a relatively lower cost of living compared to the United States.

For US citizens, the process of obtaining residency in Argentina is facilitated by the convenience of visa-free access. This allows US passport holders to enter Argentina without a visa and stay for up to 90 days, simplifying the exploration of the country as a potential destination for longer-term residency.

The first step involves applying for a visa online and getting your visa stamped in your passport by the Consulate. After this, the initial phase involves submitting all required documents to the Argentina immigration department and staying in Argentina for a specified period, typically 7-10 days, in order to undergo a fingerprint and photo registration process. The entire process is estimated to take around 2-3 months. Once the final approval is received, you will receive a National Identity Document (DNI). 

It is advisable to secure accommodation by renting an apartment and registering your presence at the local municipality. To be eligible for permanent residency, spending enough time in Argentina is advisable. After 3 years of obtaining temporary residence, you can apply for permanent residency. 

Regarding tax considerations, Argentina offers a favorable tax environment for foreign residents. Argentina does not generally impose worldwide income taxation, meaning that income earned outside of Argentina is typically not subject to Argentine taxes.

Finally, after residing in Argentina for 2 years, you may become eligible to apply for citizenship through naturalization. In making a decision, an Argentine judge will use considerable personal discretion in considering the application. Argentina allows dual citizenship. 

Argentina Residency Requirements

Foreign nationals planning to extend their stay in the Argentine Republic beyond 90 days are required to possess the following documentation for the acquisition of temporary residency in Argentina:

  • A valid passport or travel document
  • Copies of the biodata pages of the passport, as well as its previous and current visas
  • Entry stamp
  • Passport photographs with dimensions of 4cm x 4cm and a white background
  • Proof of payment for the visa fee
  • Verification of valid health insurance coverage
  • Police Clearance Certificate (PCC) issued by the authorities in any country where you have resided for more than one year within the last 3 years. Additionally, the submission of an affidavit affirming a lack of involvement in criminal activities is required.
  • Documentation providing evidence of financial means, such as a recent bank account statement or payslips 
  • Round-trip tickets or a travel itinerary
  • Confirmation of prepaid accommodations arranged for your stay in Argentina (proof of domicile)

It is important to note that all supporting documents for the Argentina temporary residence visa application must be in Spanish. In the event that they are not in Spanish, it is mandatory to have them appropriately translated.

Argentina Residency Application Process

The application process is simple and takes about 2-3 months. 45 days is the best-case scenario. The steps are such as: 

Step 1. Determine Your Residency Type

You should identify the most suitable temporary residence category for your situation, such as employment, study, family reunification, medical purposes, training, or investments, taking into consideration your specific goals and eligibility criteria for each visa option.

Step 2. Gather Required Documents

You have to make sure you have the necessary documents, including a valid passport, proof of income, a clear criminal record, and health insurance. Additionally, be thorough in collecting any other specific documents required for your chosen residency type, as outlined by the immigration authorities.

Step 3. Apply for the Entry Visa 

After you have determined your residency type and gathered all of the necessary documents, apply for the entry permit that corresponds to your chosen category. If your country of origin does not require a visa for entry into Argentina, you can apply for one online. If it is approved, the Consulate will stamp it in your passport. 

Step 4. Access the RaDEX System

You need to initiate the process by accessing the RaDEX system, the online platform for residency applications created by the National Directorate of Migration. This user-friendly platform streamlines the application procedure, providing a centralized hub for submitting documentation, tracking application status, and facilitating communication with immigration authorities.

Step 5. Register and Pay Fees

Register as a user on the RaDEX platform, complete the application form, and pay the relevant fees associated with your chosen residency type.Upload the required documentation and data specific to the type of residence you are applying for.

Step 6. Get Confirmation and Precarious Residence Certificate

If you meet the requirements, you will receive an email confirming your application's approval along with the Certificate of Precarious Residence. This certificate serves as a temporary authorization to reside in Argentina while your full residency application is being processed.

Step 7. Visit National Directorate of Migration

Receive the date for your face-to-face appointment. This step is crucial for the finalization of your application. Attend the face-to-face appointment at the National Directorate of Migration. If desired, you can expedite your process by opting for a preferential appointment, which may involve an additional payment. 

Step 8. Get a Temporary Residence Permit

You will be required to register your fingerprints. After final approval, you will be issued a National Identity Document (DNI), which is an ID card. 

5 Tips How to Get Argentina Residency from Golden Harbors

We have assisted numerous clients in obtaining residency in Argentina over the years, providing valuable advice on how to strengthen their applications. Here are some of the most important tips we offer:

  1. Research Argentina's Residency Requirements

Argentina will have specific eligibility criteria for different types of visas or residency permits. This may include employment, entrepreneurship, education, or family reunification. Check the official Argentine immigration website for accurate and up-to-date information. Ensure that you also inquire about any recent changes or updates to the residency requirements, as immigration policies can evolve and it is crucial to have the latest information for a successful application.

  1. Gather the Required Documents.

As with any immigration process, documentation is crucial. Identify the necessary documents based on the residency category you are applying for. Common documents include a valid passport, proof of income or employment, criminal record checks, and potentially health certificates. In addition, confirm whether any specific forms or supplementary materials are required for your chosen residency category, and meticulously organize your documentation to streamline the application process.

  1. Background Checks and Health Certificates

Argentina may require criminal background checks and health certificates for certain visa categories. Start the process of obtaining these documents well in advance to ensure they are ready for submission. Moreover, be aware of any specific formatting or authentication requirements for these documents, such as apostille or legalization, as adherence to these details is important for a smooth application process in Argentina.

  1. Highlight Urgency if Applicable

If you have urgent reasons for needing residency, such as a job offer or family emergency, consider providing a formal letter explaining your circumstances. This can be included with your application to demonstrate the urgency. Make sure that you follow any specific guidelines outlined by the Argentine immigration authorities.

  1. Seek Legal Assistance

The immigration process can be complex, and legal guidance can be invaluable. Consider seeking assistance from qualified immigration consultants or legal professionals experienced in Argentine immigration law. Golden Harbors team can help you navigate the process, ensure your documentation is in order, and increase the chances of a successful application. Having a knowledgeable legal partner can provide you with peace of mind. You will be well-informed about any recent policy changes and will ensure that your application aligns seamlessly with Argentine immigration regulations.

Argentina Residency FAQ

How Long Does It Take to Apply for Permanent Residency in Argentina?

It usually takes 3 years of residency to be eligible to apply for permanent residency in Argentina. The process and timeline for obtaining permanent residency can vary, depending on various factors such as your nationality, the type of residency you are applying for, and any changes in immigration policies.

What is the Easiest Way to Obtain Argentina Residency?

The easiest way to obtain residency in Argentina is by applying for the Independent Means or Retirement Visas. Argentina offers a straightforward process for those who can demonstrate financial self-sufficiency, or for retirees seeking to make the country their home. Typically, the application process takes 2-3 months. The Independent Means Visa, also known as the Rentista Visa, is designed for individuals who can prove a steady income stream from sources outside Argentina, such as real estate, investments, or other financial support. The Retirement Visa typically requires proof of a stable pension or retirement income.

Does Argentina Require Continuous Residency?

No, Argentina does not require continuous residency to maintain and extend your residence permit. However, to be eligible for permanent residency or citizenship, it is advisable to spend at least 6 months per year in Argentina.

For How Many Months Can You Leave Argentina and Still Maintain Residency?

Argentina does not have a strict rule specifying the maximum number of months residents can be absent from the country without losing their residency status. However, when applying for a permanent residence permit or citizenship, it is generally advised not to travel outside of Argentina for more than six months per year.

What Are Alternatives to Argentina Residency in Latin America?

Top alternatives to Argentina residency in Latin America include residencies in Chile, Colombia, Uruguay and Paraguay. All these countries offer options for independent means, such as retirement or investment visas. Notably, Paraguay is known for having one of the simplest and least restrictive residency processes in the region.

Argentina

Residence Benefits

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Fast application processing

1-3 months

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Global mobility and freedom

international business expansion and entry into the South American market

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Full rights of a resident

a residence permit is issued with the rights to work, do business and study in Argentina

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Global mobility and freedom

No residence restrictions. Living in Argentina offers a unique and enriching experience, combining vibrant culture, diverse landscapes, and a welcoming atmosphere

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A clear path to citizenship

residents are eligible to apply for Argentine citizenship after two years of living in Argentina

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Global mobility and freedom

there is no need to renounce your previous citizenship when obtaining an Argentine passport

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Residence for the whole family

family members (spouse, financially dependent parents, and children) can apply for a residence permit together with the main applicant

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Global mobility and freedom

Argentina has a favorable tax regime, with low taxes and generous incentives for foreign investors

Argentina

Residence Permit

Processing Time and Terms

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1

Sign a service agreement with Golden Harbors, pay the initial service and due diligence fees, and fill out application forms

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We help you prepare the necessary documentation for your chosen residency option

14

You travel to Argentina, and we assist you in applying for a residence card. Together, we submit all the documents to the Argentine Immigration Department (Dirección Nacional de Migraciones)

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Government due diligence check, application review, and approval

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At this step you pay the required government fees, complete your biometrics appointment, and obtain a residence permit in Argentina

There are Always Options to EXPAND YOUR BOUNDARIES! Let's Discuss Yours

Every client is unique

Every case requires an individual approach and solution. Our years of experience in the industry allow us to provide both.

We will answer all your questions and provide detailed information about the available second passport and residency programs to help you make the right choice.

Victoria

Lead Attorney at Golden Harbors

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Victoria

Lead Attorney at Golden Harbors