Gathering Documents

Previously you were working on documentation from your Corporation, that proved that you had a legitimate reason to be in the country, something legal to do, and that you would not be a burden to the state during your stay in Nicaragua. Now, we will work on the documentation that proves your identity, history, and character. Each of these documents must be obtained in the United States, BEFORE traveling to Nicaragua.

Once we have gone over all of the documents that you need to obtain while in the United States, we will discuss how they need to be processed to make them acceptable to the Ministry of Immigration in Nicaragua.

Certificado de Conducta (Police History, Police Report)

The first document that you need to obtain from your city of residence in the United States is a police report. This will hopefully be blank- meaning no prior felonies or convictions within the past few years. If you do have prior convictions of any kind, be ready to have to explain them. Even if you have received Jesus and changed your ways, they still may not want to let you in! For people with serious prior convictions on their records, keep something in mind- once you go on record and apply for residency, if they reject you because of your previous convictions, they may choose to deport you, and not allow you to reenter the country. Take care in applying for residency in this case!

To get your police report, go to your local police station in the city that you live in, and tell them that you need a police report on yourself (or those in your family traveling with you). You must all be present. There are some precincts that will tell you that they cannot issue a police report. Usually, if you can explain to them that you are applying for residency and need a report stating that you have no priors, then they will usually give you what you need. If not, you may need to find out where you can get one- perhaps the county seat, or local Sheriff's station. Different cities call this document by different names, and in some cities, they will just give you an official letter stating that you have no record.

Constancia Medica (Medical Exam and Physical)

 This is simply a letter from a doctor in the United States that indicates that you are in good health, have no communicable diseases, and pose no health threat to the residents of Nicaragua. This must be on some type of letterhead, such as that of the doctor’s office, or the Hospital that it was performed at. The format is not extremely important, as long as the doctor states that you are healthy, have no communicable diseases, and pose no threat to the residents of Nicaragua. Simple problems such as high blood pressure or allergies should not be noted, as they do not pose a threat to others. Note: many countries discriminate against people with HIV/AIDS. If you have, or think that you have HIV/AIDS, understand that if your medical report has this information on it, the Ministry of Immigration may deport you immediately, and/or refuse you reentry.  Also note that if you have traveled to a country with a yellow fever risk, Nicaragua will require a Yellow Fever Vaccine. When the vaccine is administered, you will receive a certificate with it. Yellow fever vaccine is given only at approved vaccination centers. You will only need this vaccine and certificate if you have visited a country with a high risk of Yellow Fever (the United States is not on the list at the time of this writing). For a current list of countries that Nicaragua requires a Yellow Fever Vaccine, click here.

Birth Certificate

In order to obtain a residency visa in Nicaragua, you will need an official copy of your birth certificate. This is not to say the first copy that your parents got from the hospital or registrar when you were born, but an official copy from your city, town, county registrar, or if you were born outside the United States as a United States Citizen, the Consular Report of Birth from the State Department. Note that the Nicaragua Ministry of Immigration will not accept copies of this document, it has to be an official copy (on the fancy colored paper), issued by a government agency.

Marriage Certificate

If you are married and jointly applying for a residency visa, then you will need to get an official copy (see above) of your marriage certificate. If you are not married, or if you are divorced, or widowed, this does not apply to you.

Document Preparation

After you obtain each of these documents, you will then need to translate or have them translated line by line. This does not have to keep the original formatting, but along with the document that you got in the states, you will need a translation so that the Ministry of Immigration in Nicaragua will know what they mean. You simply translate the document, word for word, and print the translation on regular paper.

The translations, as well as the original documents, must then be taken to a Notary Public, in the USA, who can notarize the translations, as well as the originals. This proves that the translations are accurate, and verified.

Then, you must take the Original Documents, along with the Notarized Translations of those documents, to the nearest Nicaraguan Consulate in the United States. At the Nicaraguan Consulate, you will have the original and translated copies that you had notarized and authenticated, proving that they are accurate, real, and original documents that have not been modified. This will cost from $25 to $50 PER DOCUMENT. When authenticated, each document will be stamped, and a certificate of authentication will be stapled to EACH DOCUMENT individually. Remember, each document must be INDIVIDUALLY authenticated by the consulate. Revise your documents before you leave, to make sure that they are all authenticated individually. While some of the consulates are not too busy, and can have the documents out the same day, it is prudent to call the consulate ahead of time to see what it will take to get them authenticated. If you are not close to the nearest consulate, it is possible that the documents can be mailed to the consulate, and mailed back. This is very risky, so be sure to get first class or better, and certified mail so they will have to sign for it.

Now that you have your documents prepared in the United States, it is time to travel to Nicaragua! Once there, you will go to the Cancilleria de Nicaragua (Nicaraguan Ministry of Foreign Relations), located at Del Antiguo Cine González 1 c. al Sur sobre Avenida Bolivar, Managua. It is here that you will get ALL of your documents RE-AUTHENTICATED. Yes, that’s right, you will get them notarized, authenticated, and re-authenticated! This will cost about two to three dollars per document, per person. Now, you have a set of documents that has been proven to be Original, true, and authenticated. You can add these documents to your packet, and prepare your application to be turned in.  

Now that you have everything done, and are in Nicaragua with all of your authenticated documents, it is time to put together your Residency Visa Application packet, and turn it in! Click on the links to the right, or use the navigation buttons below to continue.