Wednesday 8 February 2023

Foreign investors, pensioners and rentiers not be required to pay the Caja

Initiative proposes that foreigners can contribute to social security, on equal terms with Costa Ricans, but on a voluntary basis.

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8 February 2023 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – Foreign investors, pensioners and rentiers who come to Costa Rica will not be required to insure themselves before theCaja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) – Costa Rican Social Security Fund or Caja.

CCSS headquarters in downtown San Jose

This population comes to contribute to the economic recovery.

A Law approved in 2021 provides temporary residence and tax benefits for those who demonstrate that they will invest at least US$150,000 in real estate, registrable assets, shares, securities, and productive projects or projects of national interest.

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Jorge Dengo, legislator of the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP), said that insurance is one of the problems that this group of people faces when deciding on settling in the country.

According to Dengo, “the legislation that was approved in July 2021 is a step in the right direction because it sought to attract economically healthy segments to contribute to the country’s recovery after the pandemic, but in practice, foreigners who have applied to have this condition special immigration have had difficulties. One of the biggest obstacles that foreign pensioners and rentiers have faced has to do with the issue of being insured in the Caja,” Dengo explained

“With the proposed modification, those who want to obtain this immigration status in the country will not have the obligation to insure themselves and contribute to social security, but they will be able to do so voluntarily,” added Dengo.

The problem has been that the CCSS has established high percentages of insurance premiums to foreigners and on many occasions, these charges exceed the terms of reasonableness and proportionality. The logic at the Caja is the greater the income, the higher the premium.

For example, a foreign investor, pensioner or rentier with a monthly income of US$1,500 to US$2,500, can see paying between US$200 and US$400 monthly for the Caja.

“It is not reasonable to impose disproportionate charges that what they cause is to scare away foreigners who want to settle in the country,” Dengo said.

Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) legislator Jorge Dengo
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Diego Vargas, also PLP legislator, and co-promoter of the proposal, said “the initiative seeks to encourage the attraction of foreign direct investment, reactivate the national economy and give better conditions to foreign pensioners who see Costa Rica as a country to settle permanently.”

Dengo and Vargas presented their initiative that modifies article 7, paragraphs 7 and 80 of the General Migration Law No. 8764, to promote the inclusion of investors, rentiers and pensioners in the Costa Rican territory and thus boost the Costa Rican economy by attracting economic resources from other countries.

The initiative proposes that foreigners can contribute to social security, on equal terms with Costa Ricans, but on a voluntary basis.

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