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Andorra - Visas

Andorra uses the Euro as its national currency, despite not being part of the European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA) or the Schengen Agreement.

However, it has free movement agreements with France and Spain, meaning that all EU and EEA citizens can visit Andorra for up to 90 days without obtaining a visa. However, you must have a valid passport or identity card.

If you do enter Andorra without a visa, you cannot work or own a company in the microstate during that stay.

Work Permits

If you are intending to work in Andorra, you will need a work permit. There are no exceptions to this rule.

Your employer will have to sponsor your application and pay the processing costs. They will also be responsible for making contributions to the state healthcare insurer, CASS, including the amounts that must be deducted from your pay.

You will need to provide a criminal record check from the authorities in your home country, which can take a few weeks. Many people, therefore, obtain this document before they start looking for work in Andorra. However, bear in mind that you must make the application for a work permit no later than three months after the criminal record check was issued.

You can find out more about the work permit procedure in our section on Finding Employment in Andorra.

Category A: Passive Residency

You should only apply for a Category A residency visa if you do not intend to work in Andorra at any point of your stay there, or do not plan to own a company trading within the principality.

The application process is straightforward and can normally be completed in one to two months.

You will have to take out a government bond at the beginning of your residency. This will not pay you interest, but is refundable when you leave the country. A sum of €50,000 is required for the head of the household, with a further €10,000 due for each of the other members of the household.

In addition, you must invest a sum large enough to make the total amount of the government bond and the investment equal to or more than €400,000. This investment must be made fully within Andorra, although you can choose different investment vehicles. For example, a combination of financial investments and property is acceptable. Whilst the government bond must be taken out immediately, you will have up to seven months to make the additional investments within Andorra.

Your residency visa remains valid as long as you stay in the country for at least 90 days each year. If you meet this condition but do not stay in Andorra for at least 183 days each year, you will not be considered a resident for tax purposes. In that case, you can opt to officially declare Andorra as your principal country for income and tax purposes.

If you live in Andorra with a Category A visa, you cannot work in the principality or own a company based there. However, you can form and own companies trading outside Andorra.

You cannot contribute to the national insurance scheme (CASS) and cannot derive benefit from it. Therefore, you will have no access to state healthcare.

Category B: Passive Residency

You can apply for the Category B residence visa if you form an Andorran company which operates with at least 85 percent of its trading outside the principality. Since your business plans will be subject to thorough investigation, the application process can take up to three or four months.

As with Category A, you must take out a government bond as part of the application process. The terms are the same, meaning you will need a sum of €50,000 for the head of the household, with a further €10,000 due for each of the other members of the household.

Within seven months, you must have formed a company in which, as stated above, at least 85 percent of the trading occurs outside the principality. Only one employee based in Andorra is permitted.

The company must pay 10 percent of its profits in tax each year.

To maintain your residency visa, you will need to stay in Andorra for at least 90 days each year. You will not become a resident for tax purposes unless you stay for a minimum of 183 days.

As with Category A, you will neither contribute to, nor benefit from, the national insurance scheme (CASS). You must arrange your own private healthcare.

Category C: Passive Residency

You can obtain a Category C residency permit if you can prove that you are a well-known leader in your professional field. Whether you work in the arts, sports or academia, you will need to produce a convincing portfolio of CV, contracts, and past achievements.

If you meet the criteria for Category C, you must obtain the same government bond described for Category A and B applicants. However, you will not be required to make further investments or form an Andorran company.

You must stay in Andorra for at least 90 days per year to maintain your residency status, and at least 183 days per year to be deemed a recognised taxpayer.

Category D: Active Residency

You can obtain a Category D residency visa if you live in Andorra and are forming a new Andorran company for which you will be working.

The process begins when you obtain approval to invest funds to set up a new Andorran company. The visa is usually approved within days, but it will take a month or two for the company formation to be complete. Plus, you will not be asked to make further investments. As a result, later checks will be made to ensure holders of Category D visas are genuinely working to grow their Andorran company.

If you want your spouse to join you in Andorra without a 12-month wait before eligibility to apply for residency, they must be a shareholder of the new Andorran company, with at least 11 percent share ownership.

Your Andorran company will pay 10 percent tax on its profits. You will not pay income tax on any dividends you receive from it.

You, and your spouse if they own shares in the Andorran company, will be required to pay contributions into the state insurance scheme, CASS. This will give you rights to benefit from the scheme when you need them, including access to subsidised state healthcare.

Read more about this country

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