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Kate B
03-11-2019, 12:12 PM
Hi everyone,

When Ian and I moved to Bonaire, we were given a 5 year sedula (residence permit card) that we only have to renew in 5 years. Nationalities other than Dutch and American were given a one year sedula.

A friend from California recently moved here and was just given a sedula that expires this year, in November 2019. (She received it in late February of 2019.) We thought there was a mistake, since she is an American. She contacted the immigration office and was told that Americans will only receive a one year sedula now, like other nationalities. And, the date of the sedula is based on when she applied for residency (in November 2018) not when she received her sedula.

Years ago, Americans had to renew their sedula every year, then it changed to every 5 years. It appears it is every year now.

Just wanted to let folks know in case they are currently in the process.

gelonik
06-10-2019, 02:34 PM
What is exactly the process now for US applicants? Is it 5 times annual sedula reapplication required before one gets a permanent one? Is there any explanation why there was a change?

Has anyone experienced delay with initial approval for temporary residence permit since recently?

Kate B
06-11-2019, 09:59 AM
What is exactly the process now for US applicants? Is it 5 times annual sedula reapplication required before one gets a permanent one? Is there any explanation why there was a change?


Hi, we on the island are wondering this right now too. The change to the one year sedula is recent, so no one I know has come up to the one year mark yet. Our hope is that it is not a complete reapplication, that within 90 days of the one year, the person just goes to the immigration office and gets the new sedula. But we don't know if that's so, and we don't know if that the renewal will also be for a year, or longer. As soon as someone I know goes through this process, I'll post something.
All the best,

Joyce O
06-11-2019, 11:19 AM
Hi Kate,
Thank you for the information on shipping. I wasn’t aware that we would be charged 8% on our shipped items if we didn’t have a sedula. Also you said that if we had new items in there they would charge for them but not the old ones? How would they know if we take tags etc off the items? Also we were told we would get a sedula for life if your Dutch or American. We are planning a trip to Bonaire the first two weeks of August and meeting with Agnes Joosten so we will ask of the change when we speak to her. Would love to meet up with you when we’re on the island. If you can please let me know and I’ll give you my email.

ChrisL
06-11-2019, 10:51 PM
As a first time new resident relocating to Bonaire you need to prove that whatever you import has been owned by you for at least a year prior to avoid the 8% import tax. This is particularly enforced on vehicles and not so much on household goods. You need to hire a licensed company like Rocargo to file paperwork with Duane (customs) and the bill of laden has to be specific and inspected. Receipts for electronics, furniture, and motor vehicles will be helpful. Keep your value estimates realistic, the customs inspectors are not clueless. I believe that the import tax exemption is only good for your initial moving shipment(s). Once you relocate here ANYTHING imported is subject to an 8% import duty on the cost of the goods PLUS shipping, including boats. Fossil fueled motor Vehicles (not boats) are taxed at 25%, 100% electric vehicles are taxed at 0%. Furniture, clothing, electronics, etc are 8%. Others may know better, but I think I have this correctly outlined.

petri hausmann
06-12-2019, 08:34 AM
a cedula for life does not exist -depending on your status you renew yearly or as a permanent resident it is every 5 years.

Joyce O
06-12-2019, 05:17 PM
Thanks Chris this has been really helpful. I appreciate you taking the time to break all this down for me.

Joyce O
06-12-2019, 05:21 PM
Hi Petri I figured that was too good to be true. Hopefully we can get a five year unless they go back to the every year. Do you know what is involved with a renewal? Hopefully not nearly as much as first time residency.

petri hausmann
06-13-2019, 09:07 AM
no- just a visit to immigration -the Bonairian wait- pay the fee- picture - done--- might want to check the difference between temporary residence and permanent cedula.

Netta
12-08-2019, 04:15 PM
Hi everyone,

When Ian and I moved to Bonaire, we were given a 5 year sedula (residence permit card) that we only have to renew in 5 years. Nationalities other than Dutch and American were given a one year sedula.

A friend from California recently moved here and was just given a sedula that expires this year, in November 2019. (She received it in late February of 2019.) We thought there was a mistake, since she is an American. She contacted the immigration office and was told that Americans will only receive a one year sedula now, like other nationalities. And, the date of the sedula is based on when she applied for residency (in November 2018) not when she received her sedula.

Years ago, Americans had to renew their sedula every year, then it changed to every 5 years. It appears it is every year now.

Just wanted to let folks know in case they are currently in the process.


Hi Kate - Steve and I will be on the island in March and a large focus of our trip will be on figuring out what he needs to do to establish a location of his LLC in Bonaire. Part of that of course will be understanding the process of obtaining and maintaining a sedula. Do you have any additional insight now that your California friend has reached the end of her one year approval?
Thanks
Netta

Kate B
12-08-2019, 09:54 PM
Hi Kate - Steve and I will be on the island in March and a large focus of our trip will be on figuring out what he needs to do to establish a location of his LLC in Bonaire. Part of that of course will be understanding the process of obtaining and maintaining a sedula. Do you have any additional insight now that your California friend has reached the end of her one year approval?
Thanks
Netta

Hi Netta,
When my friend applied originally, it was as a person who is going to work on Bonaire with her own company. They gave her a one year sedula. When she went to renew it, she applied as a person of “independent means,” which means she is not relying on Bonaire income to live here. To do this she had to show off island income in an amount that would support her, which is currently $22,000 per year per person. They accepted her renewal and although she has not received her new paperwork yet, she expects it to be for five years. So it sounds like it is one year if you plan to work on the island or longer if you have independent income from another source.
All the best,
Kate

FlaParrotHead
01-07-2020, 06:36 PM
Kate.. have you heard, or has anyone heard, what US citizens with existing 5year Sedulas will get after their 5years expires? Of course, this can certainly change at any point.

bonairehomes
01-08-2020, 08:17 AM
ParrotHead -

If you already have a 5 year sedula, you just need to go to the Bevolking with your expiring sedula, pay a small fee (about $10) and that's ti. They will give you a new sedula. You don't need to bring any other paperwork, just your current sedula. It is also possible to make an appointment with them to do this, which will save you from waiting in line.

Good luck!

ModRoy
01-13-2020, 12:26 PM
Kate.. have you heard, or has anyone heard, what US citizens with existing 5year Sedulas will get after their 5years expires? Of course, this can certainly change at any point.


Reply received via Email from Petri Hausmann
That I don't know . My sister just renewed her 3rd for another 5 years and for me after 30 years 5 years always. - Might be if now 1 year extension is applied only after the 1st 5 year. ??? good question. go to the government website?

Kate B
01-26-2020, 01:22 PM
Hi everyone,

I've gotten the update from my friend who works on the island who got the one year sedula (residency) last year. At that time she indicated to immigration that she was working on the island and had a savings account she could draw from. She has just renewed at the end of the one year sedula and now gotten a five year one. The difference? She now has a pension, and provided immigration with a pension verification letter.

Here's how it was explained to her - if you are working on the island, or withdrawing money from your savings account, IRA, etc. to pay yourself the required minimum of $22,000 per year, you will receive a one year sedula. This is because the immigration office wants to make sure your income continues (you don't lose your job or go through all your savings.)

Once you can show ongoing income, such as a pension, Social Security check, etc. that is not tied to island employment or a savings account draw down, you can receive your 5 year sedula.

Hope this helps,
Kate