March 16, 2024

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Argentina Retirement Visa: The Ultimate Guide 2024

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Argentina Retirement Visa: The Ultimate Guide 2024

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Retiring in Argentina: 10 Reasons Why

Argentina is a desirable location for retirees looking for a rich and rewarding retirement experience on the ground that it offers many compelling retirement-related reasons, such as

Healthcare Excellence

Argentina's healthcare system is a standout benefit for retirees. Offering free medical services to everyone, including expatriates, the country's public healthcare system covers over 60% of all medical needs. Public hospitals are equipped with modern appliances, and the staff is well-trained and qualified, ensuring retirees have access to high-quality healthcare services without significant financial burdens. On top of that, healthcare expenditures in Argentina have traditionally accounted for 9 to 10% of gross domestic product, ranking among the highest in the region.

Affordable Living

While Argentina may not be the cheapest destination in South America, the cost of living is still relatively affordable. Without rent, a single person's monthly costs are estimated to be approximately USD 500. Retirees can enjoy a comfortable lifestyle without excessive spending on essentials such as groceries, transportation, or rent. The affordability factor varies by city, providing retirees with options to choose a location that aligns with their budget and preferences. To add to that, Argentina's average cost of living is 76% less than that of the United States. Argentina was ranked 155th in the ranking of the world's most expensive countries, while the United States was ranked 6th.

Diverse Climate

Argentina's geographical diversity offers retirees a varied climate experience throughout the year. Whether you prefer a sunny and warm environment or the charm of colder regions, Argentina has it all. From moderate climates to arid landscapes and colder temperatures, retirees can find the perfect climate that suits their preferences in different regions of the country. It is worth noting that the average mean surface air temperature is 15.11 °C.

Gastronomic Delights

Argentina is renowned for its culinary excellence, making it a paradise for food enthusiasts. The country is particularly famous for its high-quality beef, and retirees can indulge in delicious dishes such as asado, chimichurri, provoleta, and dulce de leche. The gastronomic experience in Argentina adds a delightful and flavorful dimension to retirement life. Furthermore, Argentina holds a prominent position in the global food market, ranking as the 1st world exporter of products such as soybean oil, concentrated lemon juice, and yerba mate, while also claiming the 2nd spot for exports like horse meat and prepared peanuts.

Friendly Community

Argentina, unlike many other South American countries, such as Peru and Ecuador, has fewer indigenous people and a large population of European immigrants. Indeed, approximately 95% of Argentina's population is of European descent, primarily from Italy, Spain, and Germany. The warmth and friendliness of the Argentine people create a welcoming atmosphere for retirees. Argentines are generally known for their hospitality towards foreigners, making it easy for retirees to make new friends and integrate into the local community. The spontaneous, loving, and affectionate nature of the people enhances the overall retirement experience.

Safety and Security

Safety is a paramount consideration for retirees, and Argentina stands out as one of the safest nations in Latin America. With a low crime rate, retirees can enjoy their retirement years with peace of mind, knowing that they are in a secure and stable environment. In addition, Argentina is considered to be the safest country in Latin America.

Cultural Riches

Argentina's cultural tapestry is one of the reasons to retire in the country. Boasting a distinctive and fascinating culture, Argentina has been a nurturing ground for many influential writers and artists, such as Tomás Maldonado, Leon Ferrari, and Raul Soldi. The nation's artistic vibrancy makes it an ideal haven for individuals who appreciate and seek inspiration from the arts. From literature to the visual arts, Argentina's cultural scene is diverse and enriching.

Cultural Festivals

Argentina is known for its vibrant cultural festivals throughout the year. From the energetic Tango festivals in Buenos Aires to traditional folklore celebrations, retirees can engage in a myriad of cultural events, enriching their retirement experience with a lively and festive atmosphere. These festivals often provide a unique opportunity for retirees to connect with the local community and immerse themselves in Argentina's rich cultural tapestry.

Scenic Landscapes

In addition to its cultural and culinary allure, Argentina is renowned for its awe-inspiring natural landscapes. Retirees have the opportunity to discover the diverse beauty of the country, from the majestic Andes Mountains to the expansive Pampas and the captivating Patagonian region. Exploring these scenic wonders not only allows retirees to connect with nature but also enhances their retirement experience with the outdoor environments that Argentina boasts.

Adventure Opportunities

For retirees seeking adventure, Argentina provides ample opportunities. Whether it is trekking in Patagonia, exploring the Iguazu Falls, or experiencing the unique wildlife in the country, retirees can embark on exciting adventures and create lasting memories in this captivating South American destination. Moreover, the country's well-established tourism infrastructure ensures a safe and enjoyable experience for retirees looking to indulge in thrilling activities.

Argentina Retirement Visa Overview

For those seeking retirement options in this fascinating nation, Argentina provides a welcoming avenue through its retirement-friendly visa programs. The Argentinian retirement visa, known as the Pensionado Visa, is a temporary residence permit tailored for retirees who wish to relocate and spend their retirement years in Argentina. The retirement age criteria in Argentina are set at 65 for men and 60 for women. The initial residence permit is valid for 1 year and can be extended for up to 3 years. In particular, Argentine citizenship becomes attainable following 2 consecutive years of residency, offering retirees the opportunity for a longer-term commitment and integration into Argentine society.

The Pensionado Visa not only facilitates a smooth transition to Argentine territory but also comes with financial advantages. Significantly, the government excludes regular savings income from taxation, making it an attractive option for retirees who depend on their savings for financial support. However, if rejoining the workforce becomes an option, income taxes apply on a progressive scale, ranging from 5% to 35%, depending on net income.

The Pensionado Visa is specifically designed for foreign retirees receiving a consistent and permanent pension from a government, international organizations, or private companies. This visa category thus caters to those looking for temporary residence in Argentina while enjoying financial benefits and a culturally rich retirement experience. 

Argentina Retirement Visa Benefits

The Argentina retirement visa allows foreigners with a steady pension income to stay in Argentina for up to 3 years or longer and enjoy the following benefits:

  1. Residency Status

The retirement visa grants foreign retirees legal residency status in Argentina. Residency status under the retirement visa in Argentina not only permits foreign retirees to live in the country for an extended period but also grants them essential resident rights. These rights encompass legal protections, employment opportunities, and the ability to engage in civic activities, ensuring a comprehensive and inclusive experience for retirees in their adopted homeland. 

  1. Financial Freedom

Retirees are not limited to working in Argentina, providing financial freedom to enjoy retirement without the need for local employment. Furthermore, the absence of restrictions on foreign income allows retirees to leverage their financial resources from global investments, contributing to a truly international and diversified retirement portfolio.

  1. Permanent Residency Options and Citizenship

Depending on the specific visa regulations, retirees may have the option to renew their temporary residency or eventually apply for permanent residency after 3 years of residency. Argentine citizenship is available after 2 consecutive years of residency. 

  1. No Tax on Foreign-Earned Income

Argentina typically does not tax foreign-earned income, allowing retirees to receive their pensions or other income without additional tax burdens in Argentina. Moreover, this tax-friendly environment encourages retirees to efficiently manage their international financial affairs, fostering a conducive atmosphere for wealth preservation and strategic financial planning.

  1. Community Integration

Retirees can integrate into local communities, forming connections with both locals and fellow expatriates. This integration often leads to meaningful cultural exchanges, enriching retirees' experiences by immersing them in the traditions, customs, and social activities of their adopted community. 

  1. Healthcare Access

Depending on the specific regulations, retirees may have access to the Argentine healthcare system. This could be a significant benefit for those seeking medical services during their retirement. Argentina has the highest hospital bed density in the Latin American and Caribbean region, with 5.2 hospital beds available per 1,000 population. It also has one of the highest ratios of physicians per 1,000 population, trailing only Cuba and Uruguay.

  1. Real Estate Opportunities

Retirees may explore real estate options, including purchasing property or renting homes, potentially at a more affordable cost compared to some other countries. In 2023, the value of the real estate market in Argentina is USD 3.27 trillion. 

  1. Language and Learning Opportunities

Living in Argentina provides an opportunity for retirees to learn or improve their Spanish language skills and immerse themselves in the local culture.The rich cultural landscape offers retirees a chance to explore various educational pursuits, from traditional arts and crafts to local history, enhancing their intellectual stimulation during retirement. 

  1. Travel Opportunities

Argentina's central location in South America makes it a gateway to explore other countries in the region. Retirees can take advantage of travel opportunities within South America. The well-developed transportation infrastructure and diverse landscapes in Argentina make travel convenient and offer retirees the chance to embark on scenic journeys, from the stunning Andes mountains to the picturesque Patagonian region.

Who can apply for an Argentina Retirement Visa?

A retirement visa is available for foreigners from all over the world looking to retire in the country. Typically, to apply for an Argentina retirement visa, applicants need to meet certain criteria, which include:

  1. Proof of Income

Demonstrating a regular source of income, such as a pension or retirement fund, remains a key requirement to cover living expenses during the stay in Argentina.

  1. Health Insurance

It is necessary to provide proof of health insurance coverage for the entire duration of the stay in Argentina, ensuring that retirees have access to adequate medical care.

  1. Background Check

Applicants may be required to undergo a background check, a standard procedure aimed at ensuring that individuals seeking the retirement visa do not pose any security risks.

  1. Age requirement 

While the Argentina retirement visa generally does not have a strict age limit, individuals are often advised to be at least 18 years old to be eligible for the visa.

  1. Proof of Accommodation

Providing evidence of a place to stay in Argentina, such as a rental agreement or proof of property ownership, may be necessary to secure the retirement visa.

Argentina Retirement Visa Latest Updates

In June 2023, Argentina implemented significant changes to the regulations governing the Retirement Visa. The most notable modification involves the financial requirements for this visa, which are now dynamic and linked to the minimum salary in Argentina. The previous regulations, dating back to 2016, specified a fixed monthly income of ARS 30,000 for applicants seeking the retirement visa. However, due to the substantial devaluation of the Argentine peso, this fixed amount became impractical, prompting the authorities to revise the regulations. The new rule establishes that the foreign income required for the retirement visa  is equivalent to 5 times the minimum salary, providing a more flexible and inflation-adjusted criterion, typically ranging between USD 200-300 per month.

As of December 2023, the  minimum salary is ARS 156,000. Thus, the monthly pension income has to be at least ARS 780,000 (USD 950). This adjustment aligns Argentina's visa regulations with economic realities, ensuring that the minimum income criteria remain reasonable and reflective of living costs. 

Another noteworthy change pertains to the retirement visa. The revised regulations now allow funds deposited in foreign bank accounts to be considered for meeting the financial criteria, provided the legality of the funds' origin is unquestionably accredited. However, applicants must still wire these funds to Argentina on a monthly basis for visa approval. This modification offers greater flexibility, allowing funds to be deposited in USD in a local account, avoiding unfavorable currency conversions. Subsequently, applicants can withdraw funds in USD, providing options such as exchanging at the blue rate for a higher amount of pesos or keeping the USD cash for future use, offering retirees more financial control and strategic choices.

*The exchange rate is ARS 822.406  per USD 1 at the moment of writing.

Argentina Retirement Visa Requirements

To qualify for pensioner status under Argentina's retirement visa program, applicants must provide official documentation from a government, international organization, or private company confirming the consistent and enduring receipt of a pension amounting to at least 5 times the minimum vital and mobile wages. With the minimum monthly wage set at approximately USD 190, prospective retirees must demonstrate a monthly pension income of at least USD 950. 

Moreover, you are required to submit the following supporting documents: 

  • Valid passport or travel document
  • Copies of passport biodata pages, along with previous and current visas, including the entry stamp
  • Passport photographs (4cm x 4cm, white background)
  • Verification of valid health insurance coverage
  • Police Clearance Certificate (PCC) from any country of residence for over one year within the last 3 years, accompanied by an affidavit affirming a lack of involvement in criminal activities
  • Documentation demonstrating financial means
  • Confirmation of prepaid accommodations in Argentina (proof of domicile)
  • Proof of payment for the visa fee
  • Additional documents requested by Argentine authorities based on the individual circumstances.

All documents must be legalized or apostilled by the Argentine Consulate in the issuing country, unless your country has ratified the Hague Convention. Documents presented in a foreign language must be legalized by the Association of Translators and translated into Spanish by a national public translator.

Argentina Retirement Visa Application Process

The application process is straightforward and consists of the following steps: 

Step 1. Enter Argentina

You need to enter the country through an Argentina visa or visa-free entry, depending on your eligibility. Ensure that your passport is valid for the duration of your intended stay and check the latest entry requirements, including any updates on visa policies, to facilitate a smooth entry into Argentina. 

Step 2. Start the RaDEX Application

You have to initiate the visa application process by accessing the RaDEX system on the National Directorate of Migration’s website. Attach the required documents and data through this user-friendly online platform.

Step 3. Pay Visa Fee

After completing the first part of the application, generate a payment number and make the payment as a bank deposit at the designated bank. This must be done before finalizing your application.

Step 4. Respond to All Requests

Shortly after the application, respond to any requests for additional documents or receive an appointment date at one of the corresponding delegations. Timely response and cooperation will help ensure a quick progression through the visa application procedure and enhance your chances of successful approval.

Step 5. Receive 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 temporary authorization to reside in Argentina during the processing of your full residency application.

Step 6.  Schedule Face-to-Face Appointment

Receive the date for your face-to-face appointment at the National Directorate of Migration. Optionally, expedite the process with a preferential appointment, involving an additional payment.

Step 7. Get Temporary Residence Permit

You have to register your fingerprints, and after final approval, you will be issued a National Identity Document (DNI), serving as your official ID card and marking the completion of the Argentina Retirement Visa application process.

Can a US Citizen Retire in Argentina?

Yes, U.S. citizens can retire in Argentina. Argentina is open to retirees from around the world. 

If you are a U.S. citizen applying for a retirement visa in Argentina, there are two crucial considerations. Firstly, you must provide proof of your pension from the Social Security Administration (SSA). To obtain an SSA Benefit Verification letter, the most efficient method is to visit the Social Security Administration's website and submit an online application. Simply create an account, log in, and navigate to the Benefits & Payment Details link in the top menu bar. There, you will find the option to "Get a Benefit Verification Letter." Clicking on this link will generate your SSA Benefit Verification letter, which you can then print.

Once you have your SSA Benefit Verification letter, it must be apostilled for use in Argentina. This can be done in Washington, D.C. at the U.S. Department of State. Ensure that the letter includes a legible signature, printed name and title, and an agency seal on official letterhead. The Department of State will not affix an apostille if the letter lacks a signature.

Regarding tax matters, it is worth noting that Argentina does not tax foreign-earned income, including Social Security benefits from the United States. After obtaining your retirement visa in Argentina, you will be required to file a tax return and fulfill tax obligations in the United States. This dual consideration of pension proof and tax implications ensures a smooth transition for U.S. citizens seeking to retire in Argentina.

5 Tips to Get Argentina Retirement Visa from Golden Harbors Experts

Based on our experience, moving to Argentina on a Retirement Visa begins with meticulous attention to details and thorough research. The following are the main factors to consider:

  1. Thoroughly Research Visa Requirements

Embarking on the journey to obtain an Argentina retirement visa necessitates thorough research into the specific requirements. Deep dive into the details, such as age restrictions, financial criteria, mandatory health insurance, and other documentation. It is crucial to showcase a consistent monthly income derived from a pension or retirement account. Ensure compliance with all prerequisites before initiating the application process.

  1. Accurate Completion of Visa Application

When completing the Argentine visa application form, precision and honesty are paramount. Align the information provided with the supporting documents to be submitted. Anticipate inquiries about your income, background, and reasons for choosing Argentina as your retirement destination during the visa interview.

  1. Ensure Up-to-Date Document Preparation

For those aspiring to secure a Retirement Visa in Argentina, all documents should be recent, usually not exceeding a 3-month timeframe. Initiate this process well in advance to address potential issues promptly. Verify the authenticity of all documents and their issuance by the appropriate authorities. Before dispatching them to Argentina, ensure they are notarized or apostilled, adhering to the regulations of your home country. If you are already in Argentina, consider enlisting the assistance of a trustworthy individual back home to procure the necessary document copies.

  1. Secure Your Renewal Well in Advance

Facilitate a seamless visa renewal process by submitting your application at least 1 month before expiration. Given that you may need to gather documents from different countries, commencing the process early is imperative. Failure to do so might necessitate a rushed and costly emergency extension, known as a Salvoconducto, reserved for special cases. Multiple visits to the migration office and heightened stress levels can be avoided by proactive planning.

  1. Seek Legal Assistance

Explore the option of consulting immigration experts or legal professionals with expertise in visa applications, particularly if the process appears intricate or if specific concerns arise. The guidance of a team like Golden Harbors can offer peace of mind, assuring you that a dedicated professional is working to facilitate your transition to retirement in Argentina. Their expertise can significantly enhance the likelihood of a successful visa application, allowing you to concentrate on the exciting prospect of embarking on this new chapter in your life.

FAQ

How Much Does It Cost to Get an Argentina Retirement Visa?

Depending on your nationality, the government fees range from USD 0 to USD 6,000. There may be additional costs associated with the application process, beyond government fees. Legal fees for assistance with the application, document translation, notarization, and legalization of documents are examples of such expenses. 

How Long is the Argentina Retirement Visa Valid for?

The Argentina retirement visa is initially valid for a period of 1 year. However, this visa can be renewed for additional periods, allowing retirees to extend their stay in the country. The renewal is typically possible for up to 3 years, providing retirees with the flexibility to continue their residency in Argentina. 

Can You Work in Argentina With a Retirement Visa?

No, you cannot work in Argentina with a retirement visa. This visa is primarily designed for individuals who wish to retire in Argentina and do not intend to engage in formal employment. 

Do You Need to Pay Taxes While Having an Argentina Retirement Visa?

No, you do not need to pay taxes on worldwide income while having an Argentina retirement visa. Individuals with an Argentina retirement visa may be subject to taxation on income earned within Argentina. 

Can You Get Argentina Residency With a Retirement Visa?

Yes, you can get Argentina residency with a retirement visa. This type of visa is considered a temporary residence permit that leads to permanent residency in 3 years.  

Is it Hard to Get an Argentina Retirement Visa?

No, it is not hard to get an Argentina retirement visa. Obtaining an Argentina retirement visa can be a straightforward process if applicants meet the specified requirements and provide the necessary documentation. The key requirement is demonstrating a regular and permanent pension income equal to or greater than USD 2,020, which is a measure in place to ensure financial stability for retirees living in Argentina.

What are the other visa options for Argentina?

Apart from the Argentina retirement visa, individuals have various other visa options to consider. The Tourist Visa is suitable for short-term visits, requiring proof of accommodation and return tickets. Those enrolling in academic programs can explore the Student Visa, while the Work Visa is tailored for employment seekers, necessitating a job offer from an Argentine employer. Foreign investors may find the Investor Visa appealing, requiring significant financial commitments and an investment of at least ARS 1,500,000 in a productive, commercial, or service activity in the country. 

What are other popular Retirement Visas in Latin America?

If you are considering retiring in Latin America and are exploring alternatives to an Argentina Retirement Visa, several other countries in the region offer enticing retirement options:

Brazil

Brazil extends a Temporary Visa to foreign retirees who can demonstrate a monthly income of at least USD 2,000. This visa is initially issued for up to 2 years and is renewable, providing retirees with a flexible option to enjoy their retirement in this diverse and culturally rich South American nation.

Ecuador

Ecuador presents an attractive option with its Retirement Visa, available to those with a pension or retirement income of at least USD 1,380 per month. This visa is valid for 2 years, with the condition that retirees must spend at least 6 months per year in the country to maintain their residency status, offering a balance between residency requirements and flexibility.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica's Retirement Visa requires applicants to provide bank statements demonstrating a consistent monthly income of at least USD 2,500. The duration of this visa varies based on the application and typically starts at 1 year. Costa Rica, with its tropical landscapes and biodiversity, is a popular choice for retirees seeking a peaceful and natural environment.

Colombia

Colombia's Retirement Visa, known as the M-11 Visa, caters to foreigners seeking a retirement haven with specific income criteria. Applicants must showcase a stable source of income of at least USD 995, ideally derived from pensions granted by either a state or a private pension fund. The visa is issued for 3 years and can be renewed. 

Chile

Although not required, it is recommended that the principal visa applicant demonstrate a recurring monthly income of between USD 1,000 and USD 1,500 in order to apply for a Chilean Retirement Visa. It is recommended that an additional USD 600 be paid for each dependent (spouse, children, or parents) relocating with the principal applicant. The visa is issued for 2 years and can be extended.

What Are the Best Places to Retire in Argentina?

Argentina boasts a diverse selection of cities, each catering to retirees with distinct preferences.

Buenos Aires

The cosmopolitan hub of Buenos Aires offers retirees a vibrant lifestyle with reasonably priced housing options. The city is known for its dynamic nightlife, abundant cultural activities, and high standards of living. Retirees can immerse themselves in the excitement of the city while enjoying the benefits of a well-developed urban environment.

Córdoba

For those seeking a more relaxed lifestyle, Córdoba is an enticing option. The city exudes vibrancy, affordability, and favorable weather. Córdoba seamlessly blends new and old history and culture, providing retirees with unique experiences at reasonable costs. Its atmosphere caters to those desiring a more laid-back pace while still enjoying the richness of Argentinean culture.

Mendoza

Renowned for its wealth and picturesque landscapes, Mendoza stands out as a premier retirement destination. This province is famous for its wine, sunny climate, and luxurious amenities. Retirees in Mendoza can enjoy a high quality of life, be surrounded by stunning natural beauty, and partake in various outdoor recreation options.

Rosario

With its slower pace of life and picturesque surroundings, Rosario offers a tranquil retreat for retirees. The city provides a peaceful atmosphere for those who prefer a quieter lifestyle, coupled with scenic views that contribute to a serene retirement experience.

Bariloche

Nestled in the Andes, Bariloche is a small town renowned for its alpine charm and winter attractions. This locale is perfect for retirees who appreciate a close-knit community and enjoy the beauty of nature. Bariloche adds a unique flavor to Argentina's retirement options, combining small-town charm with breathtaking landscapes.

In conclusion, Argentina presents a unique and enchanting option for retirement, offering a blend of rich culture, stunning natural beauty, and a relaxed lifestyle. Whether it's the tranquility of the Andes or the vibrant life in its cities, Argentina caters to a variety of preferences. For those seeking a serene yet culturally rich retirement, this South American gem is certainly worth considering.

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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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

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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