Multiple Re-Entries During Months-Long Stay

chs1986

Registered
Hi all,

I have a question that is peripherally related to a lot of the threads that I've seen here, specifically those regarding visa runs. I've read all manner of situations that people have found themselves in, as well as the (apparent) resolutions, and this has in general caused more questions than answers on my part. I would like to know people's thoughts on the various scenarios I will face upon re-entering the country multiple times during a stay lasting from mid-August through Christmas. Specifically:

I arrive in the country via air in August. I will likely have to leave at least three times, all for brief periods (handful of days): once via air in October to fly back to the States from BA (US citizen here), once via land in November or December to do trekking in Torres del Paine, and once in December via ferry to have some beach time in Uruguay.

Now, back some ten or so years ago, my impression was always that - unless it is rather obvious that you are abusing the tourist stamp system to stay in the country indefinitely or that something is wrong w/ your passport - the immigration officer in question would give you (i.e. US citizens) a new 90-day stamp at re-entry, and the world would keep on spinning. Hence the subculture of visa runs to Uruguay every 90 days. It appears from my reading of various threads that immigration officers have increased their scrutiny somewhat on this practice, to the point that I even read some thread about how a permatourist was let back in but under the auspices of his/her ::previous:: passport stamp, the 90 days for which had not totally expired, as opposed to issuing a new stamp. This, for me, makes zero since, as I was always under the impression that your stamp corresponds to your stay in the country, and once you step foot on foreign soil, that stay is officially over and the stamp would no longer hold any validity for purposes of immigration status.

My question is this: What are the scenarios I will be faced with upon re-entry from my trips to the US, Chile, and Uruguay? I would have thought that each time I would just get a new 90-day stamp, since it is clear that I am not abusing anything but rather that, well, I just like to travel. I ask all this because should some officer let me re-enter but under the auspices of a prior 90-day passport stamp, I could be looking at a situation where I need to apply for a prorroga (not a huge deal, but I would like to have a heads up). Whereas if I am given a new 90-day stamp each time, no prorroga necessary at any point. And it is also just useful for me to know the various scenarios in case, come 2020, I wish to return to Argentina for a few more months as a tourist after spending Christmas in the US.

Relatedly, there seem to be a lot of thread responses implying that, after an initial 90-day stay and a prorroga for a grand total of 180 days, getting a new 90-day stamp upon exit/re-entry is totally out of the question. Apart from an immigration officer thinking that you are abusing the tourist stamp system, I don't quite understand the grounds of this logic. For example, in Brazil it is codified into law that a tourist cannot spend more than 180 days per 365-day period on Brazilian soil. I do not recall ever seeing a similar rule spelled out in Argentina. Rather, I thought that it was a limit of 90-days per stay with a 90-day prorroga possible, but otherwise no limit on the number of ::stays:: you have, hence allowing for the permatourist to come into existence. This makes total sense to me, but if there is some regulation I'm missing that mandates that after a prorroga you cannot receive a new 90-day stamp upon re-entry until after you spend X amount of time out of the country, I would love to read it.

Again, my situation is not dire in the slightest. There is really no risk (in my opinion) of me being not let back in because we are talking about multiple re-entries only over a period of 4.5 months when immigration law already allows for 6 months no questions asked via initial entry and prorroga. But it would be useful to know A. the likelihood of me just being given a new 90-day stamp every time I re-enter and B. what scenarios I would be looking at should I choose to return via air in January (i.e. another new 90-day stamp? would this stamp theoretically be prorrogable? more broadly, is every new tourist stamp that you get upon re-entry prorrogable or is there some unwritten rule somewhere that you can only request a prorroga for a stamp once every year or something?).

I realize that a lot of this is discretionary as opposed to spelled out in black and white in immigration law, but hence I am asking in terms of probabilities and scenarios based on everyone's collective knowledge. Thanks!
 

deadOA

Registered
If the OP is asking about the discretion of immigration, well they can deny even your very first entry to the country. However, I don´t think that is what the OP is questioning.
 

chs1986

Registered
If the OP is asking about the discretion of immigration, well they can deny even your very first entry to the country. However, I don´t think that is what the OP is questioning.
Correct, and thanks. I'm asking a few things, primarily in terms of the actual written regulations for tourist stamps, extensions, and any limits on the total number of days one can spend as a tourist in-country per year (see my example for Brazil in the original post), and then the ::likelihood:: and :: probability:: of how those would be interpreted for my situation, with multiple exits and re-entries in a 4.5-month period.

So, as an example, like you say - you could theoretically be rejected on your first entry. But in my case the probability of that happening is essentially zero, so it's neither here nor there.
 

ben

Registered
So - as you say, nobody here can make a clear prediction, it’s all about balance of probabilities.
Anecdotally, from your 3rd re-entry (at which point you will have been here for over half a year) you can expect heightened scrutiny, as a de facto resident posing as a tourist.
There have already been accounts of people turned back for this reason.
I am not aware of any 180-limit codified in immigration law.
BUT, once here for >183 days your are considered a resident for tax purposes - which lends credence to the notion that your are no longer a bona fide tourist.
 

chs1986

Registered
So - as you say, nobody here can make a clear prediction, it’s all about balance of probabilities.
Anecdotally, from your 3rd re-entry (at which point you will have been here for over half a year) you can expect heightened scrutiny, as a de facto resident posing as a tourist.
There have already been accounts of people turned back for this reason.
I am not aware of any 180-limit codified in immigration law.
BUT, once here for >183 days your are considered a resident for tax purposes - which lends credence to the notion that your are no longer a bona fide tourist.
For "3rd re-entry", are you referring to what I mentioned about possibly returning from Uruguay in December? Or to potentially returning to Argentina in January after passing Christmas in the US? The latter scenario is MUCH more hypothetical for me. But either way, six months would not have elapsed in either case, if this makes any sort of key difference. A January return would put me at five months after my initial arrival in mid-August. My instinct would be that this ::would:: be a key difference both due to the taxation rule you mention and also because current immigration law already contemplates stays of up to six months for tourists via an initial 90-day stay plus the equivalent prorroga.
 

ben

Registered
I’d glossed over the actual dates. In your case, I refer to January.
The other point to have in mind is that we are talking human beings here.
In the event that a border agent decides to scrutinize your travel history, the fact that you were entering and exiting the country repeatedly - not just once to reset the 90-day clock - and over land to boot, would strongly suggest your being bona fide tourist.
I would not be particularly worried about you being denied entry.
 

Fiscal

Registered
I've flown back and forth from Argentina to the US about 10 times over the past twelve months and, while I do get a lot of questions, I've never been denied entry and they always write 90 on my entry stamp.
 

Bajo_cero2

Registered
Correct, and thanks. I'm asking a few things, primarily in terms of the actual written regulations for tourist stamps, extensions, and any limits on the total number of days one can spend as a tourist in-country per year (see my example for Brazil in the original post), and then the ::likelihood:: and :: probability:: of how those would be interpreted for my situation, with multiple exits and re-entries in a 4.5-month period.

So, as an example, like you say - you could theoretically be rejected on your first entry. But in my case the probability of that happening is essentially zero, so it's neither here nor there.
Immigration agents can do whatever they want. The DNU 70/2017 talks about the abuse of the tourist visa.
 
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