How to immigrate to Panama as a digital nomad?

 How to immigrate to Panama as a digital nomad?

It is no secret to anyone that life has changed as a result of the pandemic; and one of the most important changes occurred in the workplace, where the concept of teleworking has gained strength.

This, in turn, has gradually led to the elimination of the paradigm that one cannot be efficient without being in an office; making organizations give life to new work structures, and new ways of working.

"Digital entrepreneur" has also emerged, who by working freelance, can do so from anywhere in the world, just having a laptop and internet.

In both scenarios, we are then faced with a new figure: the digital nomad. And to respond to this trend, Panama has generated interesting opportunities to support all these virtual workers.

How to immigrate to Panama as a digital nomad?

The Panamanian government knows that one of the best ways to reactivate the economy in the current context is to bet on remote work.

That is why Panama welcomes these professionals and invites them to live a digital nomad adventure, by creating a new visa program for remote employees.

What is the Visa for Digital Nomads?

The Short Stay Visa as a Remote Worker is part of a program that the government is encouraging so that tourists take as a possibility, to emigrate to Panama and continue working abroad remotely.

It is important to note that this decree does not apply to people who work in Panama independently, or for a Panamanian company.

Digital nomads can live in sunny Panama for one year (with the possibility of extending it for 6 months) while working remotely.

Requirements to emigrate as a digital nomad

For a foreigner to immigrate as a digital nomad to Panama, they must meet the following requirements:

  • Have a contract with a foreign transnational company. That is, being a self-employed worker in telecommuting mode.
  • Perform functions that have an effect abroad.
  • Have income from abroad with an annual amount of at least US$36,000 or its equivalent in another currency.

In addition to the aforementioned conditions, there are also a series of specific requirements that you must present to apply for this visa, depending on the category to which you belong: remote worker or independent professional.

Requirements to apply for the visa under contract with a foreign employer (remote workers)

The application must include the following documents, without exception:

  • Completed application form.
  • Three passport size photographs.
  • Medical insurance policy with coverage in Panama, valid during the entire period of the stay covered by this visa.
  • Certification or proof of the existence of the foreign company in the place where it is registered.
  • Sworn statement not to accept another offer of work or service in the national territory, with nationals, residents, tourists, or companies to carry out business in Panama.
  • Payment of a fee of US$250.00 for immigration management in favor of the National Immigration Service.
  • Letter from the company to which you provide your services, signed by the legal representative, indicating the general information of the applicant, specific position, functions performed, salary, and work modality (remote work).
  • Commitment to assume the costs of return or repatriation to your country of origin or destination.

Requirements to apply for the visa as an independent worker (freelance or self-employed)

At the time of the application, it is important to present:

  • Completed application form.
  • Three passport size photographs.
  • Medical insurance policy with coverage in Panama, valid during the entire period of the stay covered by this visa.
  • Certification or proof of your own company, duly registered abroad, through which you will conduct business.
  • Sworn statement before a notary, describing the commercial relationship with the clients to whom you provide your services, which must include the following information: full name, general information of the applicant and the clients, what are the services provided, how much you earn for said services, source of funds, frequency of payments received for services rendered.
  • Bank certification certifies that the income received comes from abroad and is linked to the declared employment status.
  • Payment of a fee of US$250.00 for immigration management in favor of the National Immigration Service.
  • Account statement from the bank abroad, or a local bank, with authentication stamps from the issuing bank, showing the transaction of sending the funds and proving that it is linked to the declared employment status.

If you are a digital nomad and want to emigrate to Panama, our team of lawyers can help you process your short-stay visa. Contact us for more information.

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