The Panama Friendly Nations Visa is one of the options available for immigrants looking to become residents of the country. Applicants must meet specific requirements, including establishing professional or economic ties with Panama. If you qualify, you can get a provisionary residency status for a couple of years and apply for permanent residency afterward. Here’s an overview of the friendly nations visa application process:
Eligibility for the Friendly Nations Visa
The Friendly Nations Visa is for citizens from specific countries with professional or economic ties to Panama. You must be a member of the approved countries to apply for the visa. Applicants can bring their spouse or eligible children, including full-time university students.
If you’re approved for the visa, you can apply for a work permit indefinitely and obtain a Panamanian ID. You have two primary ways of proving professional or economic ties with Panama. The first is by being hired as an employee of a Panamanian company. Your second option is directly incorporating a company, which makes you an investor.
The company doesn’t have to hire employees but can’t be dormant. The immigration commission will also review your economic position. Applicants must deposit at least $5,000 in a Panamanian bank account to prove solvency. If you bring dependents (spouse or children), you must deposit at least $2,000 for each extra person.
Visa Application Requirements
Applying for the Panama Friendly Nations Visa involves the official applicant and optional dependents. Main applicants have different requirements from dependents and include a valid passport, 2nd ID, and passport-size photos. You also need to prove economic solvency.
Proving economic solvency is possible via three options. The first is through a job offer from a Panamanian company, and a work permit. The second option is purchasing real estate with a minimum value of $200,000. Your third option is an investment of at least $200,000 in a fixed deposit for at least three years at a Panamanian bank.
Applicants must also provide a health certificate issued by a local doctor. Bring your latest health certificate issued within 90 days of submitting the application. Other requirements include a criminal background check, power of attorney, and repatriation and application fees sent to the National Immigration Service.
Panama Friendly Nations Visa Application
The application process for the Friendly Nations Visa is divided into simple phases with specific timeframes between each phase. Applicants get a two-year provisional residency permit before obtaining a permanent residency process. The process can take three years because of the period between phases. Here are the four steps of the friendly nations visa application process:
1. Obtain Temporary Residency
This phase involves applying for and obtaining a temporary residency. You and your dependents must travel to Panama to get your photos taken by the Panama Immigration Office. You can meet with an attorney to complete the paperwork, register your passport, and submit the application. The immigration office will issue a temporary residency ID. If you plan to go back home, request a multiple-entry visa.
2. Obtain Provisional Residency
If your initial application goes through, expect a provisional residency ID from the immigration office. The ID is valid for two years, during which you must upload all necessary documents to prove that you uphold the visa requirements. You can hold the provisional residency permit while you fulfill the requirements. Once you meet all requirements and complete the 2-year wait time, you can apply for permanent residency.
3. Obtain Permanent Residency
This phase involves applying for permanent residency in Panama. The process takes six months to issue a resolution. The applicant and dependents can receive permanent residency cards If the application is approved. You can also apply for the national ID (E-Cédula). Once your Friendly Nations Visa application is approved, the national ID option is open. Permanent residency gives you the same privileges as other Panamanians and the foundation for becoming a citizen.
Working With a Panama Immigration Law Firm
The easiest way to apply for a Panama Friendly Nations Visa is through a reputable law firm. Experienced Panama immigration lawyers know the paperwork and qualifications required for the application. You can hire a law firm to help you meet the visa requirements and complete the necessary paperwork. Lawyers can also offer professional insights, including the best Panamanian banks to open and when to be physically present in the country.