Immigrate to South Africa – What is a South African Retired Permit/Visa?
For most foreigners, South Africa is a place of beauty, rich culture, majestic wildlife and immeasurable mountain ranges and oceans. Many foreigners wish to immigrate to South Africa, and dream of retiring in this breathtaking country. As many countries are not retired resident friendly (namely, the age of retirement (i.e. 60 – 65 years old) is to be reached before the retired permit/visa can be applied for), the Republic is known to be retired resident friendly – as there is no age minimum or maximum requirements.
Foreigners who wish to retire in and immigrate to South Africa have the option of applying for a retired permit/visa. This permit/visa is issued to those foreigners wishing to reside in the country for a period longer than 6 months. This permit/visa is divided into two categories – South African temporary residence and permanent residence – both can be applied for and obtained if the requirements are met.
How Long is a South African Retired Visa Permit/Valid For?
As this retired permit/visa category is divided into two sections – temporary and permanent residence, the validity for both sections differ considerably.
Temporary Residence based on this category permit/visa can be issued up to a maximum period of 4 years – provided the requirements are met. The general validity of this permit/visa is 1 – 4 years in order to reside in South Africa. This permit/visa can be renewed if the requirements are met for the new application.
Permanent Residence based on this category permit/visa, although the process can take longer than normal, this permit/visa is as it states – “permanent”. Therefore, once received, the holder would be seen as a normal resident of South Africa, with the only exception of not being able to vote in a democratic election or hold a South African passport.
What Are The Requirements for a South African Retired Permit/Visa?
There are a number of requirements that are identical for both temporary and permanent residence based on this category, such as a medical report, radiological report, police clearances, marriage certificate, death certificate, divorce certificate, etc.
The core requirement for this permit/visa application is based on financial proof – a prescribed amount is required to be proven in a few ways in order to obtain this permit/visa.
The financial requirements differ slightly with regards to a temporary residence and permanent residence, the break down is below:
- Temporary Residence permit/visa – the financial requirements that are required to be proven is as follows – the prescribed amount of R 20,000 is to be proven on a monthly basis, per applicant for a maximum period of 4 years. Therefore, if a couple is applying for a temporary residence retired permit/visa, R 40,000 per month is required to be proven for four years.
- Permanent Residence permit/visa – the financial requirements are that are required to be proven is as follows – the prescribed amount of R 20,000 is to be proven on a monthly basis, per applicant, life-long income. Therefore, if a couple wants to apply for permanent residence based on the retired category, the couple would need to prove a monthly income of R 40,000 that is life-long income.
- If one applicant can prove the prescribed amount for permanent residence based on this permit/visa category – the spouse or partner (if married / in a permanent relationship for 5 years and older), the spouse or partner can apply simultaneously as an accompanying foreign spouse to the applicant.
What is Financial Proof Accepted for The South African Retired Permit/Visa?
A temporary residence permit/visa has a maximum validity period of four years, the financial proof accepted by the South African Department of Home Affairs would include, cash assets (bank statements), capital, investments, actual rental income or pension income.
Permanent residence permit/visa requires proof of life-long income, therefore the financial proof accepted by the South African Department of Home Affairs would include, investment income (fixed interest), actual rental income or pension income. No capital or cash assets would be accepted for this application.
Is a Holder of a South African Retired Permit/Visa Able to Work, Study or Operate a Business?
As the temporary residence permit/visa alone does not allow the holder to work in or immigrate to South Africa. An endorsement to work would be required to be added to this permit, allowing the holder to work within the Republic. Employment is required to be in place before this endorsement can be issued.
Studying and operating a business within South Africa while holding a temporary residence retired permit/visa is not permitted.
As South Africa is a retired resident friendly country, many foreigners are flocking to immigrate to South Africa, this is possible no matter what your age – beauty and serene living are waiting to be explored.