Ecuador is definitely an ideal place to live or to stay for a long time. A small country but one with great diversity for traveling and being able to reach places in just a few hours. Prices are relatively cheap, thousands of activities and the friendliness of its people will make you enjoy your stay.There are many attractive features that make Ecuador an excellent destination for expats of all demographics. One of the biggest advantages of relocating to Ecuador is its relative ease of obtaining an Ecuador visa.Whether you're a recent college graduate who wants to spend a few months abroad before entering the workforce, a young entrepreneur who wants to invest in tourism or real estate, or a retiree with guaranteed income from a pension or annuity, Ecuador has a visa suited to your particular situation.The regulations for obtaining visas for working and living in Ecuador change frequently and it is a good idea to obtain the latest details from your local Ecuador embassy or consulate prior to making your application.
There are a number of ways to become an Ecuadorian resident and the process is fairly straightforward. Although you submit your immigrant-status visa application at the Ecuadorian consulate nearest your former residence, it is, in fact, approved through the Ministry of Foreign Relations, so expect the approval process to take four to eight weeks. Visa applications for your dependents, however, can be processed directly by the consulate once your application has been approved.
The first one is the pensioner visa. In order to apply for a pensioner visa, you have to show that you have income from a stable source. At the moment, from Social Security. The minimum that is required is $800 plus $100 per dependent. This has been the rule for the past 10 years, since I have been practicing immigration law. Of course, this minimum might change in the future.
The second type of residency visa is the investors visa. You can invest either in property or you can invest in certificate of deposits or government bonds.
You have to prove the investment with the title of ownership and a certificate that the title is clean of any liens. You have to keep the property untouched. You are not to lien it at any time of the process or during the time that you need this property as the basis for the residency visa.
The third type of residency visa that is available in Ecuador is the visa 9-III, it's the Industrial Investor Visa. That is for industrial, agricultural, livestock or international trade investors who wish to export. The investment will be in business, or individual owned companies.
The fourth type of visa is the agents visa, is a permanent visa also. It is for permanent agents also. It is for authorized agents of a company legally established in Ecuador. A permanent worker who does technical or specialized tasks for a company who also has good standing in Ecuador, or foreign press correspondents established in this country.
The professional visa 9-V is for professionals with a university degree recognized by a national university. The professional needs to bring his title, his credentials and have them re-validated by an Ecuadorian university. They require the transcripts of your studies and they also have to be apostilled, which is legalized by the Secretary of State in the United States in the case of an American citizen.
The sixth type of permanent visa for Ecuador is the dependent visa. This is for blood related relatives of a person who is either a resident of Ecuador or a citizen. They will have to provide the paperwork that shows the relation with the main applicant.
In addition to the specific documents needed for the individual visas mentioned, the following Ecuador visa requirements may also be requested:
Passport valid for more than 6 months into the future.
Police certificate from the applicant's state of residency, detailing their criminal record.
Medical certificate to verify the applicant's good health.
Visa application form.
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