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Work Visa in Costa Rica and other things..

 
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piscean21



Joined: 15 Nov 2004
Posts: 20
Location: Houston, TX

PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2004 5:01 am    Post subject: Work Visa in Costa Rica and other things.. Reply with quote

Hi,
I was wondering if anyone could give me information about how obtaining a work visa in Costa Rica? I checked out the website for Ingles Empresarial and they mentioned working illegally and "crossing the border" every three months? Another option would be to pay a penalty fee if you didn't want to cross the border every three months. Can someone be a little more specific as to what they mean? Cross the border? Where? Will I have problems when I come back to the states? Will I have problems in Costa Rica working illegally? How do people find housing down there? Has anyone lived with a family? How did that work out?
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Guy Courchesne



Joined: 10 Mar 2003
Posts: 9397
Location: Mexico City

PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2004 3:02 am    Post subject: difficult Reply with quote

It is very, very difficult to get a work visa in Costa Rica. I've yet to see a school offer one, or a teacher obtain one. Apparently, the goverment would prefer retirees over teachers.

Empresarial, as well as other schools, will recommend that you make a 'run for the border', basically, leaving when your visa expires to visit Panama, getting a new visa, and coming back. Or, like they say, pay a small fine by letting your visa expire and flying home. The fine is not much...around $75 us...which may be cheaper than a border run.

This is such common practice that it shouldn't cause you trouble. If you mess around in other things, local politics, narcotics, anything criminal, then yes, you would have trouble including deportation, more fines, and being barred from re-entering CR.
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Cheza



Joined: 20 Jul 2004
Posts: 26
Location: San Carlos, Costa Rica

PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2004 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Im in the same boat as Piscean21. I want to find out if a boarder run is actually worth it. My visa will expire in a few weeks, and Im looking at my options. Im thinking Ill just stay on an expired visa, but what are my chances of bieng cought, and deported??? And if I was deported, could I just come right back, or would I be barred? Has anybody heard of someone being deported? Or if I do decide to go for a border run, where are some good, safe, cheap places to go?

-Cheza
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Guy Courchesne



Joined: 10 Mar 2003
Posts: 9397
Location: Mexico City

PostPosted: Thu Dec 16, 2004 1:42 am    Post subject: never seen it Reply with quote

I have never heard of anyone getting deported as a teacher. If you are working there, talk to your DOS about this and see what experience they have. Otherwise, you can a) let the visa expire and pay the fine at the airport immigration or b) make a run to Panama or Nicaragua on the Tica Bus. Stay two or three days, then go back.
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Cheza



Joined: 20 Jul 2004
Posts: 26
Location: San Carlos, Costa Rica

PostPosted: Sun Dec 19, 2004 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heres what im probably going to do. I have a friend here, who I trust, and he said that his cousin works as the boss at the border crossing with Nicaragua. My friend told me that I could send my passport, and the required exit and enrtry taxes to his cousin, who would then put the stamps in my passport that say that I left and came back in after three days. So that my visa could stay current wothout leaving the country.

I know that this is illegal, but what do you think about this, how safe does it sound?
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Guy Courchesne



Joined: 10 Mar 2003
Posts: 9397
Location: Mexico City

PostPosted: Sun Dec 19, 2004 1:02 am    Post subject: hmmm Reply with quote

Sounds risky. Anytime your passport leaves your hands for someone else's, you run a risk.

But, what you describe I have heard of before. I suppose that if you trust your friend...
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doreenp



Joined: 13 Oct 2003
Posts: 147

PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2004 8:38 pm    Post subject: Times they are a changin.... Reply with quote

I am presently working in Costa Rica at a university and they have now decided that we all will become ´´legal´´ or start the process, or we will not work or get paid. The university is footing the bill but we do have to go thru the process of having our certificates authenticated and then we are fingerprinted and criminal record searched. This will probably take a while, But in the mean time, as long as the paperwork is started, we don´t have to do the 90 day visa runs.

i personally have enjoyed leaving the country and seeing Panama and Columbia but i do think that it can get a little pricey. this being compared to what you make in salary here. Buses are cheap enough but food and accomodation add up over 72 hours and then i usually have to take 2 days off work, so there´s loss of revenue.

The government is clamping down on illegal workers and this profession seems to be one it wants to legalize and collect taxes from , from what i´m told from my employers. However, this is Costa Rica and things do take their sweet time here.

Leaving the country by plane and re entering has given me no problems, but i have heard that other people have been asked to show their ticket as proof that they will be leaving CR, at border crossings when re entering by bus.

I would never under any circumstances send my passport to someone to ´stamp´, or for any reason.

I am in Heredia and loving it, Hope this information helps out .... best of luck with your travels.

D.
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piscean21



Joined: 15 Nov 2004
Posts: 20
Location: Houston, TX

PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 4:40 am    Post subject: getting it started.. Reply with quote

Since it sounds like one might need a work visa down there, is there any way to get the process started in the U.S? If not, how much does it cost, and what initial steps are needed to get the process started?
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doreenp



Joined: 13 Oct 2003
Posts: 147

PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2004 6:21 pm    Post subject: work visas? Reply with quote

At the present time, you do not need a work visa to get a job here. I work at a university and have friends who work in language schools and no one at this point has a work visa that i´m familiar with. However, as i said before , things are starting to change.

As far as i know you can not start the procedure for a work visa from the states, your employer is the one who applies for a work visa for you. You can get your documents ápostilled or authenticated in the States which is needed. If you read the Mexico forum there is information there on how this is done.

hope this helps, pm me if you want more information about getting work in CR.

Good luck
D.
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