Country Guide: Uruguay

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Updated: November 20, 2015

Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required

  • Copy of Passport
  • Original  Bill of Lading (OBL) / Air Waybill (AWB)
  • Packing list in Spanish
  • Authorization Resolution (Uruguayan Diplomat)
  • Certificate of Entrance issued by the Migratory National Direction (foreigners with no legal Uruguayan residence, returning citizens, foreign citizens with Legal Residence Visa)
  • Certificate of Residence (foreigners with no legal Uruguayan residence, returning citizens, foreign citizens with Legal Residence Visa)
  • Documents proving that legal residence procedure has been started (foreigners with no legal Uruguayan residence)
  • Diplomatic Franchise (foreign Diplomats)
  • Customs Guarantee (foreigners with no legal Uruguayan residence)
  • Signed Letter of Request for Customs requesting entry for household goods and personal effects (returning citizens, foreign citizens with Legal Residence Visa)

 

Specific Information

  • Items other than household goods and personal effects are subject to import duties. Contact the local agent in Uruguay for specific regulations and requirements to avoid Customs issues, delays and extra costs.
  • The packing list in Spanish must be authenticated by the Uruguayan Consulate at origin and must be typed on a computer or typewriter and printed on letterhead.
  • The OBL / AWB must be endorsed by the shipper with the same signature used on the entry documents when the shipper physically entered Uruguay.
  • Do not indicate “packed by owner” (PBO) on the packing list.
  • The Certificate of Entrance is issued by the National Direction of Migration.
  • For the Authority Resolution, the consignee should contact the local agent in Uruguay as the process involves multiple governmental ministries and can be confusing (returning Diplomats). Industrial tools, machinery, new appliances, etc. are not considered personal effects.
  • The procedure to obtain the Certificate of Entrance to Uruguay must be started within 60 days of the date stated in this certificate.
  • Foreigners who have not yet obtained legal residence in Uruguay may import their household goods and personal effects duty and tax-free only if they have started the request procedure to obtain legal residence.  For this reason, the move must be started and finished (with the entry of the personal effects and household goods) in the same condition (as a legal resident or as a foreigner citizen requesting legal residence). The condition must not be changed during the procedure (foreign citizens without legal residence in Uruguay).
  • The amount of the Bank Guarantee is determined based on the declared value of the shipment provided by the shipper (foreign citizens without legal residence in Uruguay). 
  • A returning citizen with more than 2 years of residence abroad who decides to repatriate permanently may import their household goods and personal effects duty and tax-free.
  • The Certificate of Residence must state that the shipper has lived abroad for at least 1 year.
  • The shipper must produce a Bank Guarantee with Uruguayan Customs until the Certificate of Residence is obtained.
  • Returning Diplomats must obtain an authenticated packing list from the Uruguayan Consulate at origin.
  • The shipper must obtain a Customs release with a note or Diplomatic Franchise for the incoming household goods. The process should be managed by the Diplomat’s Embassy, Consulate, or diplomatic organization to obtain the relevant documentation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (foreign Diplomats). 

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Copy of Passport / Diplomatic Identity Card issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (foreign Diplomats)
  • Original commercial invoice in shipper’s name
  • Driving document in shipper’s name
  • OBL
  • Certificate or written evidence of car’s registration at origin country, dated 6 months before shipper’s arrival to Uruguay and authenticated by the Uruguayan Consulate at origin (returning Uruguayan Diplomats, returning citizens)
  • Written evidence of freight and insurance issued by the moving company at origin in case the movement is managed from Uruguay
  • A resolution authorizing the import of the vehicle from the Ministry of Economy and Finance (returning Uruguayan Diplomats)
  • Copy of Identity Card (returning Uruguayan Diplomats, returning citizens)
  • Employment confirmation from country of origin (returning citizens)
  • Confirmation of ownership and usage at origin for a period of more than 1 year (returning citizens)
  • Personal sworn statement from shipper (returning citizens)
  • Confirmation of residency abroad for a period greater than 2 years (returning citizens)
  • Vehicle property document or circulation document issued in shipper’s name (foreign Diplomats)
  • Declaration seeking protection expressly to the law N º 18.250 and to the Decree #330/2008 (returning citizens)
  • Diplomatic Franchise (Diplomats)

 

Specific Information

  • Foreign citizens cannot import vehicles unless importing under a diplomatic status.
  • Returning Uruguayan Diplomats may import used or new vehicles with authorization from the Ministry of Economy and Finance obtained prior to import (returning Uruguayan Diplomat).
  • New vehicles can only be those that the Uruguayan automotive industry assembles (returning Uruguayan Diplomats)
  • It is strongly recommended that the returning citizens contact the local agent in Uruguay prior to importing a vehicle.
  • The shipper must provide documentation that demonstrates permanent and uninterrupted residence in the country of origin for a period of at least 2 years. This documentation must be legalized by the Uruguayan Consulate at origin (returning citizens).
  • The vehicle cannot be sold or transferred for a period of 4 years and must be registered directly by the shipper with the appropriate local authorities (returning citizens).
  • The shipper must meet with Customs each year for the 4 years following the date of import.

Pets

Documents Required

  • Vaccination Record
  • Veterinary Health Certificate issued by competent authorities at origin
  • Photographs of the pet (2 copies)
  • Certificate of Anti-hydrofolic Inoculation at least 30 days old but less than one year old after the application. The certificate itself must be less than 10 working days old when the animal arrives to the country.

 

Specific Information

  • The Certificate of Anti-hydrofolic Inoculation must be at least 30 days old but no older than one year than the date on the application.
  • The certificate itself must be less than 10 working days old when the animal arrives to the country.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Weapons and ammunition
  • Works of art and antiques
  • Alcohol and tobacco products
  • Food
  • Jewelry and coins
  • Bicycles (allowed only as part of a household goods shipment)
  • Wedding gifts (require a separate packing list and a visa marriage certificate)
  • Inherited goods (require a tax payment and appraisal, which takes approximately 30 days)
  • New household goods subject to duties and value added tax
  • Domestic appliances, devices, and/or machines (not classified as “household goods” by Uruguayan Customs)
  • Televisions, refrigerators, and other domestic appliances (must be in proportion to the size of the shipment)

 

Firearms and Weapons

  • Weapons imported into Uruguay are kept under custody by the Uruguayan Armed Forces.
  • Only sport guns may be imported and require a permit from Ministry of Defense.
  • All firearms must be declared in the packing list. This includes the listing of all specifications of the weapon and all property documents must accompany it for Customs.
  • At the moment of loading the container, weapons must be placed at the door of container to enable easy access for the Customs Officer.
  • Customs will take possession of the weapon at the moment of shipment arrival shipment and take them for safekeeping to the Service of Material and Armament. The weapon will be kept there until the shipper legalizes all documents in Uruguay and obtains permission to import the weapon.
  • Foreign citizens should obtain legal residence and a Uruguayan identity card before obtaining permission to import a weapon. 

Prohibited Items

  • New domestic appliances
  • Medicines, narcotics, or drugs
  • Pornographic or subversive materials
  • Live plants

Consignment Instructions

Recommended:  Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.

 

IAM Note:  Customs regulations can change at any time with or without notice. This document is provided as a guide and for information only. While IAM has exercised reasonable care in publishing this document, IAM makes no representation, either expressed or implied, as to its accuracy or applicability. 

 

Helpful Website(s):

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1054.html

http://uruguay.usembassy.gov

IAM Note: Customs regulations can change at any time with or without notice. This document is provided as a guide and for information only. While IAM has exercised reasonable care in publishing this document, IAM makes no representation, either expressed or implied, as to its accuracy or applicability.