“At this time, Cuenca, Ecuador is our top choice for relocation and we hope to visit this November. In your Ecuador Country Report, you say ‘If you don’t have a pension or social security, Ecuador has a few rarely used alternatives written right into the governing regulations.’
“Based on our current retirement timeline, we would not have a pension or be eligible for Social Security when we move overseas. But we do have adequate liquid assets to live until Social Security kicks in. Can you please clarify what other options we would have to qualify for the 9-I (retirement) visa?”
—Robin F., United States
Latin America Correspondent Lee Harrison responds:
“One thing you can do is apply for a version of the 9-I visa called Fideicomiso Deposito en Efectivo, which allows you to deposit five years’ worth of minimum income into a trust. (The total would be at least US$48,000). This assures the government that you have enough to live on for five years. It would be cheaper to just make a US$25,000 bank deposit to get an investor visa, but the trust may hold other advantages for some people.
“Also, a friend of mine created a company in the United States and then ‘retired’ from that same company. His mother was president of the company and signed a letter stating that he was entitled to a pension of US$1,000 per month, which qualified him for retirement. Before actually applying for his visa, he sent himself the US$1,000 for about six months, just to have a track record.”
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