By Patrick Connelly
Getting pensions transferred to Brazil can be a big headache if one is not prepared before hand. I’ve heard the process called “impossible” and “exhausting”, among other things, but these comments usually come from people who haven’t actually gone through it. In reality, with careful planning the process is quite easy, if not a bit long.
First off, Brazilian pension requirements for U.S. retirees are a bit steep at $2,000 U.S/month. This number is always subject to change, and with an increasing number of retirees looking to Brazil, it may certainly lower. This $2000 requirement covers the pension holder and two dependents, all of which will receive permanent resident visas. Additional dependents require proof of an additional $1000 in pension funds per month.
What You Need
This is the tricky part. Paperwork, paperwork, paperwork. The cost of living in paradise.
1. Visa application forms. The Brazilian embassy says you need two per applicant, but I’ve also heard three are necessary. Better to be safe than sorry.
For dependents under the age of 18, a copy of the birth certificate is needed as well. Also, their visa application forms must all be co-signed by the minor’s parents or legal guardians and then notarized by a Notary Public.
2. Photos. Again, the embassy says two per applicant, but I’ve also heard three. Either way, passport-style photos are the best, the ones you can get made at any Kinko’s or Walgreens. Just don’t bring a cut out photo of you at the office Christmas party. That probably won’t fly with Brazilian authorities. Avoid the headache, get the pictures made where they take passport photos.
3.Marriage, birth certificates. Depending on the number of dependents attached to the pension. Spouses need both the birth and marriage certificate, while children only need the birth documents. If you are flying solo, of course, only your birth certificate is necessary.
4. Copy of passport information. Just a copy of the information pages of the passport. The pension holder and all dependents must have a copy of their own. I’m really happy you went to Fiji last year, but don’t make copies of the country stamp pages. Not needed.
5. Criminal Record. Well, a non-criminal record would be better. This is time-sensitive, so plan accordingly. A complete criminal record check by the Federal Bureau of Investigation must be done within 90 days of your planned move to Brazil. Any record check older than 90 days is useless and the process will have to start again. The records check is necessary for all dependents over the age of 16. Check this link out for more info in the FBI background check:
6. Proof of Residence in wherever it is that you currently live in the U.S.
Pension Information : With all the red tape done, its time for your pension paperwork.
7. Proof of Retirement. A statement from the Social Security Administration saying that indeed you are retired and receive x amount in pensions. If applicable, the form should state both the lifetime portion and the temporary portion. For more on this statement, click here:
8. Proof of Pension. Documented proof, provided by your pension provider, of the amount that you receive on a monthly basis. Of course, this must equal or exceed $2000 U.S./month. Additional dependents must be covered by the amount as well, an additional $1000 U.S. a month. Again, it is good if your provider can state the long-term and temporary portions of your pension.
9. Bank Statement. A statement from your bank is necessary, stating that $2,000 (or more) of your pension fund can be transferred to Brazil on a monthly basis.
Photo from flickr