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Honduran Permanent Residency and Special Permanent Residency

Citizen Services

Honduran Permanent Residency and Special Permanent Residency

U.S. citizens who wish to live legally in Honduras for extended periods must receive permission from the Honduran government.  There are two options: Permanent Residency and Special Permanent Residency.  The Ministry of Government and Justice (Secretaria de Gobernacion y Justicia) is the Honduran governmental entity that oversees immigration issues.

Remember, foreigners who are in the country illegally can be subject to fines or other penalties and may be denied the right to leave until those penalties are satisfied.

Permanent Residency is available for people who wish to live in Honduras for the long term.  Special Permanent Residency is for those people who are in Honduras for a limited amount of time and for a specific reason, like employment or missionary work.

We have detailed a few of the requirements to obtain residency in this handout, but we caution you that obtaining residency can be a complicated and lengthy process.  To be successful, we recommend the following:

  1. Hire a Honduran lawyer with expertise and experience in residency requirements.
  2. Make sure all of the required documents are in order before submitting your residency request.  Delays in gathering the documents may result in having your petition dismissed and you will have to start over.
  3. All supporting documents need to be translated into Spanish.  Official documents from U.S. governmental agencies need to be authenticated (through apostilles) in the U.S.
  4. Initiate the process in Honduras.  Applications are only accepted in Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras.  Some Honduran consulates in the states may offer some residency services, but generally the work has to be redone.

Permanent Residence

The Unidad de Atención al Ciudadano is the unit within the Ministry of Government and Justice that handles Permanent Residency applications.  All applications for a permanent residence must be filed by a local attorney.

Government Office Information:
Unidad de Atencion al Ciudadano
Colonia Alameda
4 Avenida, 10 y 11 Calle (Next to Wendy’s Restaurant)
Tegucigalpa
Phone number: (504) 2235-7024, (504) 2235-7038 or (504) 2235-7038 – English is spoken.
Service hours: Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Categories: There are a number of categories under which you can apply for permanent residency.  Each has specific requirements so it is important to review the information carefully.  Some of the categories include:

  1. Renters. (PDF - 24KB)
  2. Pensioners. (PDF - 24KB)
  3. Investors. (PDF - 26KB)
  4. Marriage. (PDF - 25KB)
  5. Special cases (refugees, asylum cases, stateless).

Length of Process: The procedure should only take three months, if all of the required documentation is submitted with the application (PDF - 40KB).  When additional documentation is needed, materials need to be submitted within the following 10 days, otherwise the application will be canceled and you will have to start all over again.

Documentation: Be advised that all supporting documents must be translated into Spanish and duly authenticated/apostilled.

Status Reports: Once the application has been filed, you will be able to call their office and obtain status reports without your lawyer’s assistance.

Approved Applications: Once your application has been approved, you will need to pay at any local bank a 150.00 Lempira fee for the certification (Resolución).  Your lawyer will need to submit the bank receipt to the above-mentioned office, which will issue the certification.  The certification will then need to be submitted to the Honduran Immigration Service Office in Tegucigalpa for the issuance of your residency carnet, which must be renewed every year.

Special Permanent Residence Permits

The Honduran Immigration Service (Dirección General de Migracion y Extranjeria) is the unit within the Ministry of Government and Justice that handles Special Permanent Residency Permits.  The permits are issued for the maximum of 5 years. After 5 years, one can apply for permanent residency.  All requests for special permanent residency permits must be filed by a local attorney.

Contact Info:
Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería
Anillo Periférico (across from UTH)
Tegucigalpa, Francisco Morazán
Phone number: (504) 2245-6491, extension 217, (504) 2245-6496, and (504) 2245-6512.
Service hours: Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Categories: There are a number of categories for Special Permanent Residency permits.  They include:

  1. Students. (PDF - 19KB)
  2. Refugees and stateless cases.
  3. Asylum cases.
  4. Immigrant workers who stay longer than 3 months.
  5. Religious workers. (PDF - 19KB)
  6. Voluntary humanitarian services providers.
  7. Those involved in commercial activities or public shows.
  8. Temporary workers. (PDF - 14KB)
  9. Scientists, professionals, sportsmen/women (PDF - 19KB), technicians or specialized workers.
  10. Members of churches that have signed agreements with the Ministry of Government and Justice.
  11. Contractors hired for projects or programs financed by the State of Honduras, a foreign state, international organizations (PDF - 11KB)or governmental institutions (PDF - 11KB).
  12. Special Case of national interest, humanitarian interest or in reciprocity with other states.

Length of Process: According to law, the procedure should only take 40 days, however, the normal process can take anywhere from 15 days to 6 months.

Documentation: Be advised that all supporting documents must be translated into Spanish and duly authenticated/apostilled.

Approved Applications: Once your request has been approved, you will receive a carnet, which must be renewed every year.

NOTE: The attached handouts have been issued by the Ministry of Government and Justice and are therefore written in Spanish.

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