RESIDENT VISAS

ECONOMIC SOLVENCY VISA

Overview:

  • This visa is designed for those who wish to live in Panama, not being employed or starting a business, but living on their own means.
  • According to the Immigration Department of Panama, there is no minimum age required to qualify.
  • After five (5) years of having obtained the permanent residency, you will have the option of applying for Panamanian Citizenship
  • There are three (3) options available for this visa category:
    1. Invest a minimum of US$300,000 in a three (3) year time deposit (or "certificate of deposit" or "CD") at any licensed bank in Panama.
    2. Invest a minimum of US$300,000 in a titled property in the Republic of Panama to your personal name or in the name of a private interest foundation.
    3. Invest a minimum of US$300,000 combined through a three (3) year time deposit (or "certificate of deposit" or "CD") at any licensed bank in Panama, PLUS invest titled the Republic of Panama to your personal name or in the name of the foundation. (Note: interest income from the time deposit or "CD" is not taxed by the Panamanian government.)
  • The two principal stipulations for this visa are:
    1. The real estate property or time deposit has to be free and clear of any liens.
    2. The primary applicant must also prove that he or she has an income to support his or her general costs of living or her dependants. This can be accomplished by providing a bank reference letter showing deposits from four (4) mid to high figures.

Procedures for Applying:

  1. This visa must be requested to immigration through a lawyer, so obtaining a reliable Panamanian lawyer is the first step. /li>
  2. A short visit to Panama is required for your Passport Registration at the Immigration Office. You will also sign the Special Power of Attorney at your law firm to handle your immigration paperwork to start the processing of the Economic Solvency Visa.
  3. Provide all required documents.
  4. A law firm submits your application for a two (2) year Temporary Immigrant Visa, under the Economic Solvency Visa Program. You will be issued a Temporary Immigrant Card, which is valid for three (3) months. Those Three (3) months are used by the Immigration Department to process the two (2) year Temporary Immigrant Visa. After Three (3) months, you will be have been issued a new Temporary Immigrant Card that is valid for two (2) years.
  5. One (1) month previous to the expiration of your two (2) year temporary Visa your law firm will proceed to submit your application for Permanent Immigrant Visa. You are issued a Temporary Immigrant Card, which is valid for Three (3) months Those three (3) months are used by the Immigration Department to process the Permanent Immigrant Visa. After Three (3) months, you will be issued your Permanent Immigrant Card.
  6. After five (5) years of having Permanent Residency status, you may apply for Panamanian Citizenship, and a Panamanian Passport. This is called becoming "Naturalized", and requires that you accept the laws of the Republic of Panama under oath. Panamanian passports are renewable every five (5) years.
    • Note: The Panamanian government requires you to be in Panama at least once every two (2) years to maintain the Panamanian Immigrant Visa.

Required Documents:

Please note that all Canadian documents intended for use in Panama, must first be taken to a Canadian notary, then to Foreign Affairs Canada for authentication, and finally, to the Panamanian Consulate nearest you. Here in Canada we have offices in Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto, and shortly will be opening one in Vancouver.

  1. Signed special power of attorney by the applicant.
  2. Visa application form filled out and signed by the applicant.
  3. Signed Letter of Responsibility for dependents (if applicable)
  4. Photocopy of the entire valid passport of the applicant, including all the pages in the passport.
  5. Original Police record of the applicant, from the place of residence (and spouse and dependents over 18 years of age - if applicable. The document has to be presented to the immigration authorities, along with the application, within the six months of its expedition.
  6. Proof of Dependency in the following manner:
    • For Spouse: Original Marriage Certificate
    • For Children and Parents: Birth Certificate
  7. Six (6) passport sized photographs of the applicant (and dependents - if applicable).
  8. Certificate of Good Health, issued by a licensed Panamanian hospital or clinic, signed by a registered, licensed physician, indicating that the applicant (and dependents - if applicable) has no contagious diseases and is in good mental and physical condition
  9. Proof of Investment is provide in the following manner:
    1. If you are buying a property, after the titled property is purchased. The Public Registry issues a certificate of ownership, and a registered copy of the purchase contract.
    2. If the property is in the process of purchase and sale, then you can provide the following documents:
      1. An authenticated copy of the original promise of purchase agreement showing a down payment for over US$300,000.
      2. A receipt from the developer showing that he has received payment for US$300,000 or more has to be provided.
      3. A bank reference letter showing origin of funds.
    3. If you are opening a CD or Time Deposit, the bank account is opened, and you establish the time deposit. The bank then must provide the following documents:
      1. An Authenticated certificate of deposit
      2. A copy of the time deposit contract
      3. A letter certifying the amount of money and time for which the CD has been established

Required Documents for opening bank account /CD:

  1. Photocopy of valid passport of the applicant (including picture page and last registered entry).
  2. Two Original Financial Reference Letters: These can be bank, brokerage firm, or credit union. They should be on the financial institutions letterhead, signed by a representative of the financial institution, and show the contact information (address, telephone, fax, email, etc.) for the reference to be verified.
  3. Proof of Income Statement: The bank requires a document where you can identify the origin of your funds. The best way to proove this would be by providing an Income tax statement or a work letter from your current job.
  4. Note: You will have to provide at least one bank reference letter. The second letter may be replaced by a commercial reference letter from an accountant, lawyer, etc.

Benefits of the Economic Solvency Visa:

  • This visa allows you to become a Panamanian Citizen after being a permanent resident for 5 years.
  • As a Panamanian Citizen you will be able to vote, work, and obtain a Panamanian Passport.

IMPORTANT LINKS: