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How to obtain residence in Andorra, the most accessible principality in Europe
Have you ever imagined living in a European principality? Most people think that this possibility is only reserved for nobles or billionaires, but the reality is different. There is a small independent state located in the heart of the Pyrenees that attracts investors' eyes and high net worth people worldwide because of the wonders it holds and because it also offers a discreet way to settle in Europe.
We are talking about Andorra, more specifically, about why it is convenient for you to obtain Andorran residency.
The Principality of Andorra is a small sovereign country in southwestern Europe. That is, it is an independent state located between Spain and France, between the mountains. The country is small, you can go from one end to the other in less than an hour, and it barely has 84,000 inhabitants.
The capital, Andorra la Vella (meaning Old Andorra), is in the center. To the east is the valley that belongs to Grandvalira, and to the west, the other valley, belonging to Vallnord.
Andorra is known worldwide for its stunning landscapes and for having some of the world's best skiing locations, but it offers much more than that. This great small principality enjoys a booming economy, a healthy real estate market, and one of the most competitive tax rates in all of Europe. This combination makes Andorra one of the most popular options among people looking for a safe place within Europe.
Why Andorra? Nine reasons to obtain residence in Andorra
Andorra's VAT is the lowest in Europe. VAT on goods and services is at 1% on rent, culture, education, or health, while general VAT is 4.5%. This means much lower prices compared to Spain and other countries.
A favorable climate
One of the advantages of living in Andorra is undoubtedly the climate. From 365 days that you have a year where it is sunny about 310 days. Temperatures are moderate throughout the year. In winter you can enjoy the snow, something the country is proud of because the services for winter sports vacations are very famous and attract many tourists.
A safe country
Andorra is a country where there is very little crime. Because of this, it is an ideal country to live in. The number of criminal acts registered per year is much lower than those registered in other countries, including Spain and France, especially if we consider the resident population percentage.
The Andorran economy
The Andorran economy is currently supported by tourism, even though the principality has traditionally been known as an agricultural and livestock country. Millions of tourists visit Andorra annually, attracted by the climate and commerce of the region. Among these millions of tourists who visit the country, many eventually move to Andorra.
The health system of Andorra is at the top of the world ranking of health systems. It works with a system of co-payments.
- The government covers 75% of the cost of medical visits for applicants to the Andorran passive residence.
- When it comes to admissions or surgical interventions, these are covered by 90%.
Real quality of life
Andorra is the fifth country with the highest life expectancy and quality of life. It is recognized at the top of the lists of healthiest countries with the world's best health systems. This is due to the optimal quality of the air on 91% of the days, its 2000 hours of sunshine per year, and that more than 90% of the territory is made up of mountains, forests, rivers, and lakes you can explore through more than 60 mountain roads.
Growing real estate market
Andorra's real estate market is continually growing thanks to the increase of tourists and people interested in living in this small but charming territory. And best of all, property prices in Andorra are still lower than European standards, so the timing for investing in real estate in Andorra couldn't be better.
Cultural heritage everywhere
Packed with Romanesque art, UNESCO recognizes 10% of the territory as a World Heritage Site, and the Andorran government is working to make the principality the first country to be considered a World Biosphere Reserve.
Free transit to Spain, Portugal and France
The Andorran people have the advantage that their principality has a multilateral agreement with France, Portugal and Spain which allows them to enter and leave these countries without any formalities or visas for a period of 90 days. It is enough to show an Andorran identity card. This way, Andorran residents can also enjoy the charms of three of the main European countries.
The Andorran residence
The Principality of Andorra has several advantages that make it an especially attractive place to live. The advantageous taxation system includes a per capita income higher than the average for OECD countries, a high-security level, more competitive conditions, and a privileged environment.
People from more than 100 different countries found in the Andorran lands incredible opportunities to settle and invest.
To live in Andorra, you have two possibilities: passive residence and active residence.
The active residence allows the applicant to develop any economic activity in Andorra. Thus, it is a residence with a work permit. This type of residence has two variants:
- Active residence as an employee: permission to work in Andorra hired by a national company.
- Active residence for self-employed: employers who establish or constitute their own company and work.
On the other hand, passive residence in Andorra is, in simple terms, a residence whose only difference with the previous one is that the applicant cannot work within Andorra, although the applicant can open a company.
Those who venture to obtain the Andorran residence in any of its variants and are successful can then enjoy rights such as:
- Family regrouping
- Registration of vehicles, aircraft, and boats in Andorra.
- Acquiring property in Andorra.
- Approve the driving license with the Andorran equivalent.
- Open nominal bank accounts.
- Operate financially without limits.
- Own investments or businesses in Andorra.
Now let's see in detail what the requirements and application procedures are for both types of residence in Andorra.
Active residence in Andorra
This is the most versatile and advantageous type of Andorran residence, but it also has the most rigorous application process. The active residence is ideal for foreigners who want to work or do business within the Principality of Andorra, either because they have a job offer or because they have the necessary means to start an Andorran company.
Very much in line with other residency programs globally, one of the main conditions to apply for active residency is to commit to establishing effective residence in Andorra for 183 days.
Those who are able to obtain an active residency through a job offer enjoy a more straightforward process because the company that hires them takes care of everything. But the chances are that you are thinking more about the active Andorran residence on your own; this is the case in which we can help you during the whole process.
Active self-employment requires that you have at least 10% participation in a new or existing Andorran company and require that you exercise a managerial position within the company.
In addition to that, the Andorran government will require the following in order for you to obtain active residency:
- No criminal record,
- Setting up your tax domicile in Andorra,
- A certificate of the rental or purchase of a property in Andorra,
- Contribution to the Andorran Social Security,
- Making a deposit of 15,000 euros to the Financial Regulatory Authority, AFA, (deposit to be returned once you no longer reside in the country)
- To carry out a satisfactory medical examination before the Andorran Immigration Department,
- Curriculum Vitae,
- Certificate accrediting marital status.
The active residence permit is granted the first time for one year and is renewable three times for two years. In the seventh year, the renewals are delivered for ten years.
If you are interested in obtaining active Andorran residency by independent means, our team of experts can help you throughout the process. If you want to know more, don't hesitate to contact us and meet our experts in Andorra!
Passive residence in Andorra
The passive residence is a non-profit residence permit designed for foreigners who establish their residence in Andorra for at least 90 days per calendar year.
If you have business operations outside Andorra and want to become a resident of this European principality anyway, the passive residence is your best option. This type of residence is specifically designed for people with sufficient income, whether from property rentals, funds, companies, bank interests, pensions, or other means of income.
Besides, if you are interested in the Andorran residence but you need to travel to other countries repeatedly, the passive residence is perfect. Instead of having a requirement to stay 183 days a year, the requirement is 90 days, practically half of required by the active residence.
The conditions you must meet to obtain this residency if you are an investor or a person with sufficient income are relatively straightforward:
- Having a property in Andorra or a rental contract
- Invest in a property or a company in Andorra for 400,000 euros, deposit this amount into a bank fund, or pay the 400,000 euros to the INAF.
- Minimum stay of 90 days in Andorran territory.
- Certificate of good conduct.
- Private medical insurance.
- Medical certificate made in Andorra (is issued by the medical service of the Andorran migration authority).
- A deposit of more than 50,000 euros, plus 10,000 euros per dependant, made at the Andorran Financial Authority, this deposit will be deducted from the 400,000 euros investment.
- Income conformity of more than 300% of the Andorran minimum wage, currently at 1083.33 euros. Also, if you have dependents, you must add 100% extra per dependant.
And as for the required documentation, it does not vary much from that required for passive residence:
- Original and photocopy of passport
- Criminal record from the place of birth, nationality, and last country of residence.
- One recent photo
- Married certificate (This document have to be recently ordered and apostilled)
- Rental contract or property deeds
- Be the holder of an insurance policy covering incapacity and medical expenses in Andorra
- Be the holder of a pension scheme or a pension (not for children under 18 years old or for people older than 60 years old)
- Bank certificate of an income three times higher than the minimum salary of Andorra per year
- A health certificate issued by a doctor accredited by the Andorran authorities (the medical examination is carried out one day after you hand in the required documentation).
The documents must be translated into Catalan, Spanish or French and apostilled if they are translated outside Andorra In the case of translations within the country, they are translated directly into Catalan but no apostille is required. In addition, the applicant must submit the original of each document requested.
Andorran immigration authorities may require additional documents in specific circumstances.
The government of Andorra grants this type of residence for one year. The first two renewals last three years, and after the seventh year, the renewals are for ten years.
Our team of experts can also help you arrange passive residence in Andorra for you and your family without you having to worry. So if you want to get the residence in one of Europe's most unique places, contact us and meet our team of experts!
Who are we, and what can we do for you?
At Mundo, we have worked with NTL for almost three decades providing high net worth individuals, families, and investors with the best residency services in the best and safest jurisdictions worldwide.
We believe in freedom, which is why we try to improve our offerings at every opportunity and expand the possibilities for our clients. For over two decades, we have consolidate a network of experts worldwide that allows us to protect our clients and their families' assets and freedoms.
Now we can proudly say that our network of experts comes to Andorra with aplomb to help people who want to live in the most remarkable principality in Europe to get the most suitable residence for their needs.
Our experts can accompany and advise you during the whole application process to the Andorran residence in any of its variants. But we do not stop there. To offer you a truly comprehensive service, we have to accompany you in what comes after obtaining the residence: opening a bank account, registering a company, or buying a property; and we are pleased to let you know that in each of these initiatives, we have you covered.
If you think Andorra is your ideal destination, do not hesitate to contact us now and have an interview to meet our team and start working on your residence!
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