Time Needed to Qualify for Citizenship in Chile

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The department of immigration in Chile (Departamento de Extranjería y Migración) starts counting from the time you receive temporary residency stamp in your passport towards your five years of “residency” for citizenship, as the constitution of Chile only says “residency” without distinction to status as a temporary or a permanent resident of Chile. So, One year of temporary residency, plus four years of permanent residency, will qualify most people living in Chile as permanent residents to applying for citizenship in Chile, if all other requirements are met.

We might on a related note, also mention that the department of immigration in Chile is now requiring all temporary and permanent residents of Chile to demonstrate a “substantial connection” to the country in terms of days living in Chile over the course of that five years to qualify for both citizenship and permanent residency renewal.

Exactly what qualifies as “connection” has not been clarified; but, it is intended to stop “passport shopping” by people that had no real intention of living in Chile, but only completing the absolute minimum requirements to qualify. Under the old rules, a person could, in theory, complete their 180 days of physical presence for temporary residency, apply for permanent residency, and then renew or extend once a year at the consulates outside of Chile. In total, a person might spend only slightly over 6 months, and still qualify for applying for citizenship in Chile.

Source: Spencer Global Chile

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