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Legal residence

Any foreigner may initiate the process for obtaining the Uruguayan legal residence, which can be of three types:

  1. Temporary residence: people will not be in this category when the activity they intend to develop in the country takes less than 180 days. The period for which the residence is granted will vary according to the category in which the person is.
  2. Permanent residence: the status or attribution of being a permanent resident in Uruguay. They have access to the benefits reserved for residents i.e. work at any job that suits your qualifications, attend schools and colleges.
  3. Mercosur: Up until 2014, nationals of the countries that were part of the MERCOSUR, could ask the MERCOSUR for a TEMPORARY Uruguayan residence (valid for up to two years and renewable for the same period). From the year 2014 onwards, law 19.254 allowed the following to get PERMANENT residence status to national of countries that are members of the Mercosur, as well as associated states, Uruguayan national’s spouses, concubines, parents, brothers or sisters, and grandchildren.
Temporary Residence: categories to apply

Category 1

Scientists, researchers, teachers, professionals, academics, technicians and specialized/qualified personnel hired by public or private entities and national companies or foreign companies established in Uruguay which develop activities in the country, to perform their specialty. For category 1 – the period of the residence is valid for up to two years and renewable for up to four years.

Category 2

Entrepreneurs, directors, managers and administrative staff of national or foreign companies, to cover specific charges in these companies. For category 2 – the period of the residence is valid for up to two years and renewable for the same period for up to four years.

Category 3

Students who come to study for secondary education, tertiary education or postgraduate education/graduate education, in official or private institutions officially recognized. For category 3 – the period of the residence is valid for up to a year, and renewable for the same period. The maximum should not exceed the total period of the studies in more than two years.

Category 4

Journalists, athletes and artists hired by companies or entities established in the country, to work in activities of their profession. For category 4 – the period of the residence is valid for up to two years and renewable for the same period for up to four years.

Category 5

Scholarship holder. For category 5 – the period of the residence is valid for up to a year, and renewable for the same period, until the end of the scholarship.

Category 6

Religious belonging to churches, orders or congregations recognized in the country, coming to do its cult activities, teaching or assistance. For category 6 – the period of the residence is valid for up to two years and renewable for the same period for up to four years.

Category 7

Husbands, minor children and parents of the people mentioned in the preceding categories. For category 7 – the period of the residence it will be equal to the period of the relative he/she came with.

Permanent Residence

Legal residence is associated with the place where a person resides and has fixed his or her ordinary dwelling, without the intention of changing it. It’s the status or attribution of being a permanent resident in a particular jurisdiction, not for a mere special or temporary purpose, but with the present intention of making a permanent home.

It is necessary to prove the intention of permanence.

Items that may prove the intention of permanence:

  • affidavit which shows that the applicant is the owner of a company or business in Uruguay
  • having a job in the country, or
  • in the event the applicant has underaged children, any and all means that prove that such children attend school in Uruguay

The intention of permanence will be judged according to articles 26 and 27 of the Uruguayan Civil Code. Sporadic absences for recreation, family reasons, business or other similar reasons, especially in the case of citizens of neighboring countries will not be considerated.

PRESUMPTION OF THE INTENTION TO RESIDE PERMANENTLY

The intention to reside permanently in the country will not be presumed or a domicile acquired based on the mere fact that a person has stayed for some time in his own or any other person’s home, when his or her domestic home is based elsewhere or the fact that his residence is temporary arises from any other circumstances.

The intention to reside permanently in the country will be presumed if (i) a person establishes any type of durable establishment, to be administered by him or herself personally; (ii) such person accepts a stable job, the type of which it is normal to be granted for an extended period of time; (iii) any other similar circumstances.

Permanent residence law 19.254

For nationals of the countries which are members of the MERCOSUR, associated states and Uruguayan relatives.

The purpose of the law:

  • Offer benefits to those who wish to swiftly settle in Uruguayan soil, through agile procedures:

    • facilitate the access by foreigners to the PERMANENT residence in Uruguay
    • source of Income is no longer required to apply for the permanent residence
    • once the documentation is submitted, the process is culminated in a short period of 30 working days

  • It has been established that the requirements cannot be more demanding than those for temporary residence
  • Intended to enable people to return, restore contact between family members, help reunite families
  • Secure rights and benefits for immigrants
WHO CAN APPLY FOR PERMANENT RESIDENCE?

Uruguayan Foreigners Relatives:

  • Uruguayan nationals’ husband or wife;
  • Uruguayan nationals’ concubine, when their relationship has been judicially declared, according to Uruguayan laws;
  • Uruguayan nationals’ parents;
  • Uruguayan nationals’ brother(s) and/or sister(s);
  • Granddaughter/grandchildren of Uruguayan: grandparents born in Uruguay.

Nationals of states members of MERCOSUR and Associated States:

  • ARGENTINA
  • BRAZIL
  • PARAGUAY
  • VENEZUELA
  • CHILE
  • BOLIVIA
  • PERU
  • COLOMBIA
  • ECUADOR
  • GUYANA
  • SURINAME
URUGUAYAN LEGAL CITIZENSHIP

To obtain the Uruguayan Legal Citizenship is necessary to meet the following requirements:

The right to obtain the citizenship is granted to:

  • Foreigners with good behavior and constituted family in Uruguay, with working capital or property in the country or that profess a science, art or industry. In this case the foreign must have at least 3 years of habitual residence in Uruguay.
  • Foreigners with good behaviors, without constituted family in Uruguay, that have one of the characteristics mentioned in the previous paragraph and 5 years of habitual residence in Uruguay.
  • Foreigners that receive the special grace of the General Assembly regarding his remarkable services or relevant merits.

The applicant shall be of legal age (18 years).

Facts to be proved:

  • Authorization to reside: this shall be proved through a Certificate issued by the Department of Immigration.
  • Nationality: certificate of birth or other document from the country of origin in which the nationality arises.
  • Age: certificate of birth, public documents from the country of origin, or other means if corresponds.
  • Identity: documents abovementioned and declaration of 2 witnesses of more than 25 years old (not police officers, soldiers or electoral functionaries).
  • Residence: it will depend if the foreigner has constituted family in Uruguay.
  • Settle: document that proves that the applicant has working capital or property in the country or that profess a science, art or industry.
  • Good behavior: information provided through the Police Office and declaration of witnesses.
  • Democratic ideas: sworn affidavit and declaration of witnesses.

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