A foreign national who is a retiree and who is not a prohibited immigrant may be granted a residence permit to remain in Ghana. Retirees are generally persons who are no longer in active employment. There is no definition of a retiree in any of the immigration statutes.
And the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) has not developed a specific or separate permit for retirees. Eligible applicants are granted dependent residence permits. The term “retiree permit” is only used for purposes of convenience.
How long is a Retiree Permit valid for?
A retiree may be eligible for a residence permit valid for up to 4 years in the first instance, and up to 8 years in total, upon renewal. A retiree granted residence permit cannot pursue any business, profession, or any activity for reward, unless they have been granted a separate permit for that purpose.
How to apply for a Retiree Permit
An application for a retiree permit must be made in Form F to the GIS. The applicant must complete and sign the form, and must include an application letter addressed to the Comptroller-General requesting for the grant.
The letter must state their personal details, reasons for the permit, and the duration of the permit requested. Like dependents, retirees must satisfy a maintenance requirement. Their permit is subject to a prohibition on employment, business or any activity for reward.
They must show that they have sufficient funds to maintain themselves and any other dependents without recourse to public funds. Evidence that they own land or have access to regular income shown by bank statement may be evidence that they will not become a burden on public funds.
The retiree must also provide two guarantors with copies of their Ghanaian passports, one of whom must write a letter of guarantee for the applicant. As a condition for the grant of the permit, the guarantors must jointly execute a bond for security as in Form I.
By so doing, the guarantors undertake to be liable for any deportation or repatriation expenses up to the value of the amount stated on the bond, should the retiree or any of their dependents be required to leave Ghana. A list of required documentation is:
Documentary Requirements for Retiree Permit
- Application letter requesting for the grant of a residence permit
- 2 passport-sized photos
- Bank Statement or a lease or a combination of both
- Letter of consent from a child’s parent (if applicable)
- Copy of Birth Certificate of a Child, if applicable
- Two Guarantors with copies of their Ghanaian passport
- A letter of guarantee from one of the two guarantors
- Execution of a bond for security by both guarantors
- Marriage Certificate (if applicable)
- Non-citizen ID
Renewal of Retiree Permit
A person granted a retiree permit may apply for the renewal of the permit. They must show that they did not violate the terms or abuse any of the privileges attached to the previous permit.
For example, an application for the renewal of a retiree permit may be refused if the officer found that the holder engaged in an activity for reward in violation of the terms of permit. A retiree permit cannot exceed 8 years in total with the previous permit.
The fee for the retiree may differ on the basis of their nationality as ECOWAS nationals and Ghanaians with foreign passports may pay a fee different from other foreign nationals. The fees are for permits valid for one year.
Retiree Residence Permit (ECOWAS) nationals = GHS200
Retiree Residence Permit (all other foreign nationals) = GHS300
Retiree Residence Permit (Ghanaians with foreign passports) = GHS150
There is no requirement for a medical examination for a retiree. However, they, their spouse, and children of 6 years and above must obtain a Ghana non-citizen ID card at a fee of USD120. This card is valid for one year and renewable at a fee of USD60.
Provided all documentation are in order, the processing time for a retiree residence permit ranges between 2 to 3 weeks.
Disclaimer: This article only provides general information and guidance on Ghana immigration. The specific facts that apply to your matter may make the outcome different than would be anticipated by you.
The writer will not accept any liability for any claims or inconvenience as a result of the use of this information. The writer is an immigration law advisor and a practicing law attorney in Ghana. He advises on Ghana, U.S., UK, and Schengen immigration law.
He works for Acheampong & Associates, a law firm in Accra, Ghana. He may be contacted on [email protected]