Hello, everybody. So today I talk about the retired visa Section 24 for South Africa.
What are the requirements for the Retirement Visa?
South Africa actually has an option for retirees to come to our beautiful country; enjoy the wine, the people, the landscapes, and maybe flee the European or Northern Hemisphere winter. What are the requirements for the retired visa? There are basically only two requirements or two options, and I think it’s very important that occasionally maybe Home Affairs officials watch our videos, because they seem to forget about the second option.
Option number one is basically that you have an irrevocable pension or irrevocable income of a certain amount. Okay, I will talk about the amounts just now. The alternative in the act is a prescribed minimum net worth, so we’re looking either at pension or at net worth, these are the two options according to the act, and then in the regulations there are further defined.
So basically, the government of South Africa requires you to either have a pension in the amount of 37,000 Rand per month. Okay. So that’s the minimum amount. It used to be, I think, 20,000 Rand for long time and then they increased it to 37,000 Rand. So that’s what you need per month from a pension or private pension or government pension income.
Now to the to the net worth, and that’s, I think, an important one, which I in practice often see some mistakes happening on the adjudication side, and that’s why I brought my regulations here and I want to read the wording because I think it’s quite important. The net worth contemplating section 21 B of the actual the combination, and that’s now important, combination of assets. So combination of assets realizing per month, the 37,000 Rand, so it’s a combination of assets.
What’s a combination of assets? So that can be, in our opinion, real estate. So if you have a house and you’re rent it out, that’s assets providing with income. It could be shares in a private company and giving distributions dividends. It could be obviously a very, very large stock portfolio giving you dividends. Just interest income for instance, I mean, the interest is increasing worldwide, so maybe more people will get no interest exceeding this. These are the options which fall into that.
Practical solutions for your application
One practical solution we have seen in the past working was the so-called lump sum. Because the retired visas are only issued for four years, for a period of time, you could show a bank statement with basically 37,000 Rand per month, times 12 times four, and when you showed that then you could go under this option via net worth. We have seen quite a few rejections lately. Lately means now, in August 2022, when we taping this, so I’m not convinced anymore about this one. But, I have to say, I am criticizing Home Affairs from time to time, but if we really read carefully the act, I do think that their more narrow interpretation could be justified. I don’t think it’s always in the best interest of the country, but if we look at the legislation, I do think that that narrow interpretation is valid.
So the lump sum option is difficult. However, real estate income is definitely covered by definition, and then you can renew the visa every time by another four years. There is no cooling off period, there is no maximum period that you can only apply for maximum times. You can do it from within South Africa, if your old retired visa is still valid. It’s all very simple, very easy, a lot of our clients are doing this and we would be delighted to assist you.
Written by Andreas Krensel
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