Employee of Headquarters of Multinational Visa

As a foreigner, I just received a job offer from a Multinational Company Headquarters (SEM) in Panama. How do I get my residence and work permit?

There are around 186 multinational companies’ headquarters (SEM) in Panama that require full-time employees at all times to develop and execute their commercial activities. For such purposes, the Government of Panama enacted a legislation that creates a special regime, thus describing the requirements that all employees  hired by the Multinational Company Headquarters must meet:

  1. Employment and sponsorship letter of the SEM company signed by its legal representative or special agent
  1. Three (3) passport-size photographs of the employee
  1. Complete photocopy of the applicant’s passport duly authenticated by a Notary
  1. Criminal record certificate of the applicant from their country of origin or last residence
  1. Health certificate of the applicant issued by a suitable doctor in Panama
  1. Affidavit of the criminal history of the applicant
  1. Individual or collective medical insurance policy certificate of the applicant
  1. Certification issued by the Technical Secretariat of the Headquarters Licensing Commission of multinational companies

This residence visa offers the following benefits:

  • The visa is granted for five (5) years, extendable
  • The applicant may include his or her spouse and children as dependents until they reach the age of 25, as long as they pursue higher education regularly and under conditions of economic dependency
  • Does not require a work permit
  • Income tax exemption as long as the salary comes from a foreign source
  • Tax exemption for the introduction of household items and vehicles for the personal use of permanent employees
  • Exemption from income tax, Social Security, and Educational Insurance contributions
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