What is a non-profit (passive) residence in Andorra?

Residencia Andorra No Lucrativa

Passive or non-profit residence is for those who want to live in the Principality, without working as an employee in Andorra. It is the best way to obtain a residence permit without having a work contract in Andorra.

The non-profit residence is especially aimed at those who can prove sufficient income to remain without having a job in Andorra and who obtain financing legally, either through pensions, property funds, bank interests or any other provable means.

Non-profit (passive) residence is especially interesting for individuals who are not going to stay for a long time in the country. Passive residence required to stay for 90 days, instead of the 183 that are required for tax residence. This will give you availability to travel almost all year round.

More specifically, passive residence is aimed at:

Investors in Andorra.
Those persons susceptible of scientific, cultural or sports interest.
Those professionals and entrepreneurs with projects, of any kind in international level.

To fulfill the application you have to be in the country and be over 18 years old (in the case of minors, it is not necessary to be there physically). 

Requirements to obtain passive residence:

In 2020,  Andorran authorities updated the requirement list dependins on the categories. If your category is investor, you should meet the following points: 

Have a property in Andorra or a rental contract.
Invest in a property at least 350,000 euros or pay that amount in a bank fund in Andorra.
Be in the country for a minimum residence time of 90 days.
Certificate of good standing.
Private medical insurance.
Prove that you have an income more than 300% of the Andorran minimum wage.

In addition to all this, you will have to leave a deposit of 50,000 euros, plus 10,000 euros per person in charge to AFA.

Investments are very detailed on the Andorran government website, but they basically refer to real estate or financial investments.

Within this category, the Andorran Administration establishes two models, A and B. Thus, category A residents can also form an Andorran management company. In practice, it is the simplest category and it usually takes only three to eight weeks to answer.

Model B is a bit more complicated, since it asks you to carry out, at least, 85% of the commercial activity outside the country, although you can employ Andorrans (also with a maximum number). Its management can take between one and three months, as the business plan has to be evaluated by various government departments. Once you are cleared, green cards are issued three to six weeks later. Once you have it, you can start to formalize the company within the Principality.

Requirements for scientific, cultural or sporting reasons

Everyone knows that many Spanish athletes are registered in Andorra, for example, the former tennis player, Arantxa Sánchez Vicario; the tennis player, Carlos Moyá; the motorcyclists Álex and Pol Espargaró, Jorge Lorenzo or Dani Pedrosa, among others. The Principality also requires them and all those who want passive residence for scientific, cultural or sporting reasons.

  • Passport.
  • Certificate of civil status.
  • Housing rental contract or purchase documentation.
  • Proof of scientific, cultural or sports qualities.
  • Conformity of income above 300% of the Andorran minimum wage.
  • Certificate of good standing.
  • Retirement pension, disability or pension insurance, depending on the case.
  • Deposit of more than 50,000 euros, plus 10,000 euros per dependent person, in the INAF (Andorran Financial Authority) until the passive residence is resolved.

Residence permit has to be renewed in 2 years, then in 2 years more and 3 years. After seven years, the next renewal will last 10 consecutive years.

Steps to follow to apply for passive residence

Managing non-profit passive residence in Andorra is not complicated, of course, as long as you have aforementioned requirements. However, you must bear in mind that the steps to follow will be different, depending on which category you are applying for.

An important advantage is that part of the management can be done from your country of origin and then go to the Principality only to formalize your application and to be granted a passive residence permit. As you will not yet have such a permit for this visit, you will have to travel with a Shengen tourist visa to circulate in Europe (only way to enter to Andorra is by Spain or France), which will allow you to be legally in the country for a total of 90 days.

If during this time you cannot complete the application for any reason, you will have no choice but to return to your country, request a new visa and return to the Principality, to try again.

Different types of residence permits in Andorra

There are approximately six residence permits in Andorra, although they can be grouped into two quite different categories: active and passive (which we have developed at the beginning of this article). The difference between the two lies, above all, in the professional activity carried out. While you are active, you can apply for the first one if you have a work permit and can carry out a work or professional activity there. The second (passive) is, as we said at the beginning, the possibility of living legally in the Principality, without exercising any work activity.

In addition to these two large groups, there are numerous work permits without residence that have been created specifically to respond to certain professional needs, which do not meet the above requirements. In this modality there are also two main types: generals and cross-border workers.

If you are an active resident, you can request residency for family reunification of:

Your spouse or partner in a stable union.
Your minor children and your spouse's minor children, if you have legal custody.
Your children of legal age and the children of legal age of your dependent spouse who have legal guardianship or a similar institution.
Your ascendants retired or over 65 years old.
Any person over whom you have legal or similar guardianship, provided that both parents have lost parental authority.

Advantages of having an Andorran residence

As in any country in the world, legal residence in a country where you were not born will allow you to enjoy all (or almost all) of the advantages that its citizens enjoy, in addition to having their obligations. But the most important is that of free movement. In the case of Andorra, the non-profit residence will be used to do all of this:

You can apply for Andorran citizenship if you accumulate more than 20 years with the residence permit.
You will have the right to free movement, both in Spain and in France, since Andorra has agreements with both countries, despite the fact that the Principality is not part of the European Union.
One of the most attractive advantages (and that we have already mentioned before) is to be able to enjoy the Andorran tax regime, especially as regards consumer goods. Their taxes are very low (you will not pay more than 10% of what you earn, something unthinkable in other countries) and there are no tax burdens such as capital gains, taxes on company dividends or taxes on wealth.
You make it easier for your family to also obtain residency while you make your own application.
You will enjoy a very quiet life, in a wonderful natural environment and with a very low crime rate.
Public health and education systems are characterized by being very efficient and of high quality, and everyone who has residency can benefit from both.