Larry Pioli, the owner and developer of Vista Pacifica Homes in Ecuador visited with the main attorney for immigration and citizenship in Guayaquil on Friday, July 3rd, 2015. Here are the notes that he took:
The rules for investor or pension visa have NOT changed as in needing more money to invest in a CD or invest in Real Estate or make more than the requisite minimum amount for a pension visa. Currently you must invest in a CD or Real Esate, or prove pension as follows:
- In a CD, a minimum of $25,000 for a single person with $500 in additional value for every dependent and that CD has to be for a minimum of one year.
- The minimum amount for a pensioner to be able to prove from a recognized retirement plan as in Social Security or the government etc. is currently $800 with an extra $100 needed for each dependent monthly.
- The only rule that has changed recently is the added need for the Federal criminal background check and in Guayaquil they are still requiring both local and federal. That could change along with any of this info so please be aware of that and double and triple check everything.
The above info is for residency…the next information is regarding citizenship
- The requirement is a minimum of 3 years as a permanent resident, no exceptions.
- The travel restriction is very real…you can ONLY be out of the country for a maximum total over those 3 years of 90
days…right 90 days, not 90 days for the first two years for your residency (I know it does NOT make sense but those are the rules and I asked the same question in different ways but the answer was always the same…..so be aware of that if considering citizenship when you travel. The rule is 90 days within 3 years so if you spend 89 days out of the country the first year and none for the next 2 you can still apply for citizenship, as an example.
- There is a written test, NOT verbal but they do expect you to know, understand, read, write and speak Spanish, there is also a geography and history test and you must be able to sing the national anthem. You might be in a crowd for the anthem, then again you may not be so best if you actually know it.
- I forgot to mention the total cost and it is considered a personal process so you do not need an attorney…the total cost currently is around $1600.
Now even though this information came directly from the ministry and the lead attorney…..ALWAYS double and even triple check everything when it comes time for you so you dont have any issues. That is the first couple steps…and I will advise on how things go as it progresses in the future.