Relocating to Panama

Panama is one of the world's premier retirement destinations. Find information on moving to Panama.

Panama Immigration

Thinking of moving? We can make the process a pain-free experience.

Estate Planning

Find information on managing your life in Panama - from buying a car to setting up bank accounts.

Real Estate

From initial due diligence to closing - we've got you covered.
Doing Business
If you decide to establish their business in Panama City, there are a number of steps to follow: to incorporate the company, tax registration, registration with the Ministry of Commerce, with records of the Social Security Board; register with the Ministry of Labor and register with the local town hall. Look at our schedule of fees for a local company.

First, incorporate the company. Maybe that's a little too obvious a requirement. But I would recommend that if you intend to have an active business in Panama who joins a company independent of any investment company you have.

The most common type of society in Panama is the Sociedad Anonima. Most people think that there is a difference between land and businesses in Panama - this is a mistake. The reality is the tax system used in Panama is territorial - hence the income earned outside Panama is not taxed. It is possible for a company to win both on the ground (home Panamanian) and the extraterritorial income in the same company. [For more information, see Tax Services].

Secondly, the registration with the Ministry of Economy and Finances (MEF - this is commonly known as the IRD IRS or other countries). We automatically record all companies formed in Panama with the MEF to the incorporation and the payment of Government Franchise Tax. This recording is simply to obtain a Tax Registration Number - this number is actually made up of the registration data from the Office of Trade Registry, but add 2 digits at the end, requested the check digit.

Thirdly, the registration with the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MITI). Foreigners who own businesses in Panama can only obtain licenses to type A. This is because there is a restriction of certain types of commercial activities, which are reserved for Panamanian citizens. Obviously, after obtaining citizenship, are also eligible to obtain a Type B commercial licenses.

** Please note that the application for business license to actually apply for a permanent address in case the company is, therefore, it is necessary to have already been identified (and leased) in offices or building where The company is located.

The General Office of Internal Trade is responsible for the preparation and execution of the laws that develop, regulate and supervise commercial activities in Panama through its Office of Internal Trade. This office is also protected, both nationally and internationally, patents, trademarks and business records, through the General Office of Industrial Property Registry.

The application for a license or registration of a legal entity (provided by the Ministry of Trade and Industry) should be submitted by the law firm, along with the following documents:

Copy of ID card or passport of the legal representative of the Corporation

Certificate of Good Standing of the Corporation provided by the Public Registry of Panama

The payment of registration fees

Following the submission of these documents, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce issued a provisional license, which allows the company to do business.

After about ten (10) days, and after verification by the MITI of the information provided in the application form, such as consultations and physical inspections to the company office, the General Office of Internal Trade authorizes the issuance of business license.

You will have to put the business license on the wall in a prominent place, where you can actually have seen (the inspectors should go into the office). The business license, basically, contains the following information: Company name, trade name (if different from that of the registered company name), Business Location principal, the details of the legal representative and general manager of the company, and a brief description of the commercial activities of the company. This application does not need to be submitted by the law firm, since it is one of the legal requirements.

Fourthly, with records of the Social Security Board. If the intention in implementing any of the following programs of immigration: Immigrants Micro investor or investors will have to have at least 3 Panamanian employees on the payroll. It is necessary to register all employees with the Social Security Board, as well as making the legal social security contributions and deduct their share of their wages before paying them. We would be more than happy to assist you with filling out application forms for registration of the company and employees.

Fifth, with registration from the Ministry of Labor. What is needed here is to offer the Ministry of Labor with copies of employment contracts of its employees. When you hire an employee, three of the original contract of employment must be made - one for the business, one for the employee, and one for the Ministry of Labor. If you need help with the drafting of employment contracts (which should be in Spanish - while they may be bi-lingual), please feel free to let us know.

One word of caution: When someone resigns - please make sure your letter of resignation is actually stamped by the Ministry of Labor (the employee should personally take his letter of resignation to the Ministry of Labor and sealed before they have to surrender to you).

Sixth, the registration with the Council of the City - Panama City. All businesses in Panama City to pay a certain amount of municipal tax on a monthly basis (and then a second kind of tax on an annual basis - that is the signal). This tax is set by the City Council, and depends on the size of the offices, the number of employees, and the type of commercial operation. Having registered with the Ministry of Commerce has 20 days to file the registration documents for the City Council.

To this end, the business license which is registered in the municipality of Panama and the following documents must be submitted:

Copy of business license (original must be shown to confirm the authenticity of the document)

Copies of the articles of incorporation (The originals must appear to confirm the authenticity of the document)

Copy of Certificate of Good Standing provided by Public Registry (the original must be shown to confirm the authenticity of the document)

Copy of ID card or passport of the legal representative of the Corporation.

The payment of registration fees

Following the submission of registration documents, the inspectors visited their offices to verify the location and type of business. This phase will establish the monthly / yearly municipal taxes.

Quick Contact