Ecuador Exit Tax is Well on its Way Outta Here!

Written by Sara Chaca, Attorney – Abogada, January 10th, 2023

One of the primary concerns of Expats in moving to and/or investing in Ecuador is whether or not their ability to expatriate their funds from Ecuador to their country of origin or elsewhere will be impeded by the Exit Tax that has long existed in the country.

Happily, the Exit Tax in Ecuador, as the title of this article boasts, is gradually reducing and is no more the 5% that it used to be, and rather is being reduced each quarter that goes by.

At the current rate of its ongoing reduction, this being by 0.25% per quarter, will on this current proviso, be on track to drop to a 0.00% rate (non-existent) by October 1st, 2026.

What this beneficially means of course, is that those foreigners who move to Ecuador anytime before then or thereafter, as long as they plan to be/stay in the country (or at least their funds not depart) prior to then, will receive the best benefits of both worlds. That is to say, earning a generally superior rate of return on their investment(s) in any Ecuadorian Bank Certificate(s) of Deposit at each individual Bank or Cooperative that are subject to a $32,000 guaranteed Ecuadorian Government insurance protection, which is actually quite similar in nature to that of the assurance provided by the US’ FDIC), plus the ability to have residency in the country and enjoy the overall much lower cost of living compared to places like the US (that besides the usually better climate, lower crime rate and less stressful form of living).

And even if one does need/desire to send their money outside of Ecuador between the time they first bring it to the country and October 1st, 2026 (per how first referenced above), they’ll still potentially earn a significant premium on the annual interest rate in any Bank Certificate(s) of Deposit here. Therefore, any hypothetically lower and lower Exit Tax of Ecuador will be diminutive enough to not in any way break the bank (so to speak) in regards to the also above referenced generally superior rate of return on their investment(s), and once again all the while likely save quite a lot of money on their living expenses relative to what they are/were in the US or even most other lands in the western (even eastern) world.

Even so, quite a significant number of Expats regularly contact me the world over, so as to via a Power of Attorney, open an account at an Ecuadorian Bank or Cooperative, and often many such accounts. This, including when knowing ahead of time that perhaps at some future point they may have a “mini-tax” on the basis of the up through now continually diminishing Exit Tax, just so they can diversify and receive the benefit of the usually much higher annual interest rate on their invested monies as compared to the likes of the US and other lower interest rate paying countries. Plus once more, they also understand that this sets them up perfectly in the event of needing/desiring to jump ship from the country nation state they’re currently holed up in or worse, watching burn (i.e. the US), so that in this way, it won’t be more than a hop, skip and a jump to immigrate to Ecuador and save their savings (besides possibly themselves, their families and/or each of their respective futures).

As such, the very best recommendation I give to clients on any single day (and sometimes twice on Sunday), is to consult with an Ecuadorian Immigration Attorney with your investment plans in Ecuador, including that I personally am always quite happy to provide a free consultation by video call over WhatsApp or Zoom, and naturally also in person for those who can and/or prefer to come meet my office.

The world isn’t perfect, Ecuador isn’t either, therefore really it’s more nowadays about getting one’s ducks in row. We can help—simply contact Sara Chaca, an English speaking Ecuadorian Attorney (principal office is located in Cuenca but services all of Ecuador). Sara is well known for replying to in less than 24 hours (usually much faster) – plus for every Expat, Sara provides a complimentary consultation regarding all the Ecuador retirement benefits and the moving to Ecuador process.

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