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Uruguay For Me
We'll help you discover Uruguay and decide whether you want "Uruguay For Me" - we can help make Uruguay for You.
We'll help you discover Uruguay and decide whether you want "Uruguay For Me" - we can help make Uruguay for You.

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Visiting Uruguay? Exploring it on your short "Uruguay Reality Check™" trip or your longer "Uruguay Test Drive™" 1-3 month non-tourist-oriented extended stay? Be sure to bring, or get, a Debit Card, and make sure your issuing financial institution has the proper travel notice so that it will work in Uruguay. You'll save 4 of our usual 22% value-added-tax (IVA) on nearly everything you purchase.

This is not the often-reported "tourist tax refund" that is only on restaurant meals, car rental, and a few similar services, and only for non-Uruguay cards. This is for nearly everything. It's the Law of Financial Inclusion, aimed at Uruguayans primarily, but it also benefits anybody with a Debit Card. From any country.

Learn more at the hub of our Uruguay For Me/Uruguay Expat Life Site network, our main UruguayExpat.Info website. 

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Our "Uruguay For Me" consults on Plansify ended, because owner Derek Earl Baron closed Plansify. Our new service soon!

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The World Justice Project scores Uruguay as highest in the Latam/Caribbean region on overall "Rule of Law", and only 2 places behind the USA globally (20 vs 18). With some factors scored better than the USA: "Absence of Corruption", "Fundamental Rights", "Civil Justice". That last one, especially on the affordability of civil justice to the average person seeking it.

On most of the other major factors, the USA does not do significantly better than Uruguay.

Each of those factors ranked, is further broken down into sub-factors. For Fundamental Rights, for example, subfactors are "Equal treatment and absence of discrimination", "The right to life and security of the person is effectively guaranteed", "Due process and rights of the accused", "Freedom of opinion and expression is effectively guaranteed", "Freedom of belief and religion is effectively guaranteed".

Each factor has these types of subfactors. Thus there's likely to be an area of special interest to you, if you're considering life in Uruguay, or another country, or life in the USA.

If you are interested in digging further, please make sure to click into the overall map, the individual countries of your interest, download the PDF of the report, and download the Excel worksheet where you can examine and filter for the various factors. (Compatible with free and open source Libre Office and other spreadsheets, if you don't have or choose not to purchase Microsoft Excel.)

The data, as a direct link to the Uruguay-specific profile but also with links to the full report on 113 countries, is here:

There's also a useful introductory article at US News and World Report, if you just want a general introduction to the study and where the USA falls among other countries.

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Yet another reason we often refer to our chosen country as "Tech Hub Uruguay" - It's number one in Latin America for LTE broadband market penetration. By a huge margin over the next country, 49% Uruguay compared to 18% for Chile (rounded).

With both fiber-optic and LTE broadband being number one in Latin America, Uruguay may be right for you and your business too.

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Our free information and resources website, "Uruguay Expat Life" at UruguayExpat.Info was recently recommended by the Wall Street Journal.

Last month, the WSJ listed us as in their "Resources sorted by area" section of their "Expat to Expat Advice: Global Nomads Tell All" article:

We have articles on Uruguay living, residency, healthcare, banking, day-to-day life, and more. There's a handy "search" box at the top of the page, and a category selector on the sidebar to choose topics of interest. We've got some new articles coming out soon, but there's already a wealth of information and resources from the past few years, ready for your reading.

We also have information on booking a "Uruguay For Me" low-cost consultation via Plansify, links to some recommended Uruguay guidebooks and other websites, with more to come!

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Thanks for your vote of confidence booking our advice consultations at Plansify. Several new sessions, exciting!

Our Uruguay For Me service provides low-cost, personalized consultations, via the innovative Plansify service that was founded by well-known travel blogger "Wandering Earl". One hour Skype calls (sorry, they require Skype at present rather than also supporting Hangouts), or three detailed email questions. Pricing and how-to-use at the link. Also, check out the many other Plansify travel and expat experts if you are trip-planning or making a move to other destinations.

Though the Plansify sessions are booked officially with +Mark MercerUruguay For Me / Uruguay Expat Life co-publisher, author +Lisa Mercer, also is involved in research for your answers.

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Moving to Uruguay with your pet? It's possible. Or adopting a cat or dog here? Also possible. Though not everything you'll find here in Uruguay is inexpensive, with some things more costly than in USA/Canada, healthcare is usually far more affordable than in the USA. Including healthcare for your ""mascota", your companion animal.

For example, our friends at our local Sociedad de Asistencia Veterinaria. *Veterinaria SAV" is a "pet mutualista", so to speak, not all that unlike the human medical mutualistas to which most Uruguayans and expats choose to belong ( SAV is here in Canelones departamento now in Atlántida, where Uruguay For Me/Uruguay Expat Life publishers Mark Mercer and Lisa Mercer live with Whistler the greyhound ( and for over a year before he passed from old age complications Blackcomb the cat (

Veterinaria SAV, with its lead doctors Sebastian and Fabian, are our primary care vet. For only 165 pesos per month, your pet is covered for all in-clinic visits and a number of procedures. That's only about 7 dollars a month. Compare that to US-style "pet insurance" or to your vet's regular charges. House calls are covered except for a small transportation fee. Until 2015 it was only 150 pesos/month with a 50 peso add-on for each additional pet. Medications are also slightly discounted for members. SAV did the initial diagnosis and palliative care treatment for Whistler el Galgo Americano's bone cancer, and consulted with the on-faculty specialists from the Universidad de la República Veterinary Medicine school who did the cancer surgery and are doing the chemotherapy.

Just like there is top-notch healthcare at affordable prices for you here, though perhaps with some procedures and cultural expectations slightly different from big-business lawyered-up defensive-medicine USA, there is top-notch affordable healthcare here for your pet as well. With similar models of medical societies, or private practice veterinary clinics, or public hospitals attached to the teaching university. (

Whistler's surgery, by someone noted to be the top expert on small animal joint surgery in the Southern Cone, was 8000 pesos for the hospital, surgeon, and anesthesiologist charges. At a time when the peso-to-dollar ratio was around 24-to-1, effectively at least 23-to-1 including the "friction" of money transfer or ATM fees and exchange costs. There were 2000 pesos of additional fees from our consulting local veterinarian who coordinates Whistler's specialty care and whose facility on the outskirts of Atlántida was the surgical and recuperation site ( at the pet hotel post-op.

Do the math - about $400 USD (would be written as U$S 400 here) for a cancer amputation and post-op care. X-Rays, done in our house(!) by a mobile vet xray tech, added about 100 dollars. Not "cheap", certainly an unexpected and unwanted cost, but worth it to remove the pain from and extend the life of our beloved dog. Imagine what that costs in the USA! We can imagine to an extent - our first greyhound broke her hip on ice, and needed different but similarly major surgery. That was back this time of year in 2009, six years ago in icy Colorado USA. The operation and related items was well over $3000 dollars, way back then!

One of the medications Whistler is on, both pre-surgery and because it helps with pain and there's some evidence it can lessen cancer recurrence, ongoing now, is Previcox. That's a special type of NSAID (en español, AINES, anti-inflammatorio non-esteroidal) that's a COX-2 inhibitor. Yes, like now-banned-in-humans Vioxx and heavily-restricted Celebrex, but dogs don't have the cardiac risk from it that people do. That's an expensive med, at 40 pesos per pill. But check out the price of it in the USA from a "discount online pet pharamacy" - almost $160 dollars for a bottle of 60. I'd pay 2400 pesos uruguayos to Veterinaria SAV for that, or about $100 dollars US. 38% cheaper here in Uruguay than in the USA. And that's buying it from the vet. Buying it from your vet in the USA is likely more than the $157.95 that respected online pet supply company KV Supply gets for it. (example:

Bottom line: You can get your pet here. Even in-cabin, if she's small enough and you know which airlines and routings to fly (We do.) You can find a loving pet here that needs a home. Whether your mascota is an expat like you, or your best local friend, you can get good, and affordable, veterinary medical care for your furry family member.

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Can you get healthcare in Uruguay? Find out how it works. Our ongoing series of articles, links, observations, analysis, and solid info, are always at the "Healthcare" category of the Uruguay Expat Life / Uruguay For Me site network.

Bookmark to keep up with the latest information on this question that is crucial to so many people considering, Is Uruguay for me?

Much more healthcare news and personal observation on navigating the multiple parts of Uruguay's multi-layer, affordable, truly-universal, heath system, forthcoming. All will always be at that URL.

Our website Uruguay Expat Life, the hub of that network, is a free service of +Mark Mercer, +Lisa Mercer , and +Southern Cross Web and Social Marketing. Also check out this article written for +International Living by Lisa Mercer, Top-Class Health Care in Uruguay -

Another free service? The Uruguay Expat Life Interactive Community right here on Google, with easy-to-remember shortlink It's where you can ask questions, share with other expats and immigrants to Uruguay, and start any topics you like that relate to life here in this great little country. Including about healthcare.

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If you're thinking of buying, starting, or investing in a business in Uruguay, be sure you have the right professionals and know all the laws and your responsibility under them. If this is your goal, you are in a world beyond just the type of "DIY Expatriation" / "Be your own general contractor for your own residency* that we at the Uruguay Expat Life / Uruguay For Me network most frequently write about, and which we ourselves have been doing. 

It's a great idea to have a business here. But if your business, however small, is officially established as a legal entity here, you have all sorts of obligations - and we're not your best resource for that sort of thing, though some members of our Uruguay Expat Life Community well might. ( if you want to shortlink bookmark it - it's where we're posting this into to open the discussion).

But we do try to keep up with new laws in Uruguay that might impact your "Is Uruguay for Me?" decision, such as our recent posts across our network on Ley 19.210, the Law of Financial Inclusion, - and here's another new one: Ley Nº 19.288 which mandates reporting of the owners of "Sociedades Anónimas", "anonymous societies". Or, in USA terms, "corporations".

In the USA, many people, including ourselves in a previous business venture, establish formal business entities like an LLC (Limited Liability Company, a special type of partnership); S-Corp (a single-owner or few-owners Corporation with flow-through taxation individually), or full corporations. Here in Uruguay, there are various types of company structures too, with differing tax and reporting requirements, and a common one is the Sociedad Anónima, the S.A. That's actually what the "sa" at the end of bus companies like Copsa, Cutcsa, and Comesa means!,

Well, if you have an S.A., you now have to report the ownership of those who represent at least 50% total of the capital. The Anonymus Society is not so Anonymous anymore.

Notice in a local business directory, seen by us today:
El 1 de Noviembre entró en vigencia la ley Nº 12.288 del 26 de Setiembre de 2014,  que establece que las sociedades con participaciones partrimoniales al portador que no identifiquen a sus titulares serán disueltas en pleno derecho.

Aquellas sociedades que no cumplan antes del 29 de Enero de 2015 con informar sobre los titulares que representen al menos el 50% del capital integrado quedarán disueltas de pleno derecho.

Una vez disueltas, tendrán 120 días para liquidarse. Vencido dicho plazo, las sociedades incumpliodoras serán sancionadas con una multa con un monto equivalente al 50% de los activos propriedad de la sociedad.

Machine translation, unedited (Bing translate at Microsoft's, which is routinely more accurate than Google's, in our opinion):

On 1 November he came into force on September 26, 2014 No. 12.288 law, which establishes that the societies with entries partrimoniales to the carrier which does not identify its owners will be dissolved in full.

Those societies that do not meet before the 29 January 2015 report holders representing at least 50% of the integrated capital will be dissolved by right.

Once dissolved, they will have 120 days to settle. Expiry of this period, incumpliodoras societies will be penalized with a fine with an amount equivalent to 50% of the active property of the society.

Our colloquial reading of it, which didn't need the machine translation but benefits from it:

New law in effect a month ago, Nov 1, requires anonymous society companies to disclose their majority ownership, or be dissolved by law, in full. You have until January 29, 2015 to comply. If you don't comply, the company is dissolved. Once dissolved, you have 120 days to liquidate assets. Don't do it by then, you get sanctioned with a fine of 50% of the company's assets.

You probably want to talk to your business attorney about the impact of this, if you have a Uruguayan business set up as a sociedad anónima.

We're not lawyers, accountants, notaries. Not abogados, contadores, escribanos. We also don't currently have any Uruguay-based formal business entity. So we're just looking out for you by pointing out the existence of this new law. Not doing any interpretation of it as to your situation, and not making any statement about whether or not it's a good law.

Some links we've found that help give some context:

This last one from Punta del Este Internacional, though its title refers to law 18.930, actually talks about this law, Ley 19.288.

Have more to share about this? Help your fellow Uruguayan business owners and those considering business here, learn more, by writing a comment. Have you been told about this before? We'd love to know if we're the ones breaking this news to you. Will your business be impacted? If you can, please share what you can.
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