Costa Rica

Individual - Other taxes

Last reviewed - 20 December 2019

Social security contributions

An individual’s share of social security contributions is 10.34% on total remuneration, which, in the case of salary, is deducted from the individual’s payroll payment.

A self-employed individual’s participation in the social security system is determined by the Social Security Authority on the basis of the general reference of income determined by the Board of Directors by type of worker, unless that the Social Security Authority determines that the self-employed individual’s income is greater than said reference, in which case, the individual’s contribution to social security will be determined on the basis of this adjusted income reference. A self-employed individual’s contribution to the social security regime can range from 10.5% to 18.62% depending on one’s classification and income reference. All salaried and self-employed workers are obligated to contribute to the social security regime.

Consumption taxes

Value-added tax (VAT)

A VAT is imposed on the sale or transfer of tangible and intangible goods, the transfer of rights, and services that are customary and consumed within the national territory. The rate is maintained at 13%, but for some very specific cases (including health services, education and goods of basic consumption) rates are set at 4%, 2% and 1% (respectively).

See the Other taxes section in the Corporate tax summary for more information.

Selective consumption tax                                                                  

The selective consumption tax may be applied at a rate of up to 100% and is levied on goods that are considered non-essential.

See the Other taxes section in the Corporate tax summary for more information.

Property tax

Each local municipal government is in charge of real estate appraisal. The annual property tax to be applied throughout the Costa Rican territory is 0.25% of the appraised value, registered in the respective municipality where the tax liability originates.

Real estate transfer tax

Real estate transfer tax is calculated as 1.5% of the selling price of the real estate or its property tax value, whichever is greater. The tax is triggered by the direct sale of the real estate or through the indirect transfer of real estate when there is a modification in the control of the entity holding the real estate.