If you are a foreigner that has been in Panama for more than a year and would like to live and work in this beautiful country, I advise you to pay attention to the following information.
The Panamanian government, consistent with an open immigration policy, is providing all foreigners with the opportunity to make their immigration status legal, through a card-like document that would allow them to live legally in the country for two years. This also includes a work permit for the same period of time to all of those that comply with the minimum requirements.
From September 29th to October 7th, 2013, everyone who is eligible for the benefits of the Extraordinary Regularization process of Immigration, called “Panama, Crisol de Razas (Melting Pot)” should attend the ROBERTO DURAN gymnasium, located in Juan Diaz, Panama City from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. with all the required documentation.
The foreigners who would like to apply for the immigration process of legalization must meet the following requirements:
Must be 18 years or older.
1.a. If under the age of 18, the applicant must have the authorization of one of his/her parents notarized and proof of their relationship.
Must have at least one year in Panama. The entry stamps in the passport cannot be more than six months older among each other.
You should not have any procedure in progress at the National Service of Immigration.
3.a. In the event that you consider it to be more beneficial to give up and drop any previous procedures at the National Service of Immigration, you should request it through an attorney.
You must personally attend the event to present your legalization request. You may also be accompanied by a legal representative.
The documents that must be presented are the following:
Two forms of photo identification.
Authenticated copy of the entire passport with personal information and stamps legible, which should prove a stay in the country of at least one year.
If you do not have a passport, you should have the following:
Certificate of the correspondent consulate which confirms the personal information and certifies the non-possession of the passport or that it is being issued.
Police report for the loss or robbery of the passport from the Direction of Judicial Investigation (DIJ), the Public Ministry’s Reports Reception Center (Centro de Recepción de Denuncias del Ministerio Público) or the Police Corregiduria as a last resource. The applicant shall also go with a witness who must sign a sworn declaration for Notary confirmation knowing the applicant and the approximate date of his/her entry to the country.
Sworn declaration of responsibility or letter of responsibility by a permanent resident or a Panamanian with a notarized copy of the immigration card or personal identification card must be authenticated by the Civil Registry or by a notary. In the event of being younger than 18 years old, the notarized sworn declaration or letter of responsibility should be issued by an up to fourth-degree relative or second-degree kinship, who shall notify him/herself in the resolution.
Proof of the address in original or notarized form which can be water, electricity, telephone bill or the rental agreement, or an address certification issued by the Corregidor. It must coincide with the address written in the Sworn Declaration.
From your country or from the last country in which you resided, if you have been in Panama for less than 2 years. The police record must be apostilled or authenticated by the Panamanian Embassy or Consulate in the country in which it was issued and by the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Panama.
Complete forms of affiliation or registry and the Declaration of Personal Background.
The costs of the immigration services, not including the notary services, shall be, depending on the status and nationality of the applicant, from approximately $767.00 to $2,602.00
The National Service of Immigration will grant the Resolutions related to each case and a Provisional Stay Card for two years to the foreigners that apply for the first time and that comply with all the requirements.
Although the Panamanian government has not confirmed the formal requirements to opt for the work permit at this moment, here is the proposal for the XI Immigration Procedure made from May to June, 2013, to which we assume there will not be any major changes.
Third Article of the Resolution DM 165-2013 as of April 18th, 2013.
Two forms of photo identification.
Application, which can be presented by the applicant or by a Judicial Representative duly confirmed with a POA.
Resolution issued by the National Service of Immigration, by which the Provisional Stay Permit is granted.
Authenticated copy by a notary of the card issued by the National Service of Immigration proving the provisional stay permit granted to the applicant.
The Fourth Article of the Resolution DM 165-2013 of April 18th, 2013, establishes that the work permits granted by this procedure shall be for the same period of time than the Provisional Stay Permit, which cannot exceed two years.
The Work Permit is $500.00, plus $1 in bank fees and an additional fee for the card.
JOHNNY A. GRIFFO A.
PTY LEGAL CONSULTING
Lawyers in Bocas del Toro and Panamá
Abogados en Bocas del Toro y Panamá
(+507) 757-9809 / 66780600