Panama has become a popular destination for expats looking to establish tax residency, thanks to its friendly nation visa, simple tax system, and straightforward residency procedure. In this guide, we will explore these topics in depth and provide expert tips for those considering Panama as their new home.

Understanding Panama's Friendly Nations Visa

The Friendly Nations Visa Program is designed to attract foreign investors, entrepreneurs, and professionals to Panama. To get this visa, applicants must show that they are financially stable, have no criminal records, and promise to invest in Panama or start a business there.Expert Tip: It's important to work with a reputable law firm or immigration consultant when applying for the friendly nations visa. They can help ensure that all the necessary documents are in order and that you meet the program's requirements.

Benefits of the Friendly Nations Visa

In addition to fast processing times and the ability to work and start a business in Panama, the friendly nations visa offers several tax benefits. One of the most important is the chance to live in Panama permanently for tax purposes and use the country's territorial tax system.Expert Tip: To maximize the tax benefits of the friendly nations visa, it's essential to work with a qualified tax consultant who understands the complexities of Panama's tax system. They can help you optimize your tax planning and minimize your tax liabilities.

Panama's Tax System

Panama operates on a territorial tax system, which means that only income earned within the country is subject to taxation. There is no capital gains tax or inheritance tax in Panama, making it an attractive destination for investors and retirees.Expert Tip: While Panama's tax system is relatively simple, there are still nuances that can impact your tax liabilities. It's important to work with a tax consultant who has experience navigating the tax laws and regulations in Panama.

The Residency Procedure

The process of becoming a resident in Panama is easy, but you must have all the necessary paperwork to avoid delays or other problems. Applicants must show that they are financially stable, have no criminal record, and pass a medical exam.Working with a law firm or an immigration consultant can help speed up the process of becoming a resident and make sure that all the necessary paperwork is in order. They can also help you understand the requirements for permanent residency and citizenship in Panama.

The Black List

Panama has been on the OECD's "black list" of non-cooperative tax havens in the past, but the country has made significant strides to improve its tax transparency. As a result, Panama has been removed from the list.Expert Tip: While Panama is no longer on the "black list," it's important to stay informed about changes to the country's tax laws and regulations. Working with a tax consultant who has experience in Panama can help you stay up-to-date on any changes that could impact your tax liabilities.


Establishing tax residency in Panama can be a smart financial move for investors, entrepreneurs, and professionals. You can get the most out of Panama's territorial tax system and pay the least amount of tax by taking advantage of the friendly nations visa, the simple tax system, and the easy residency process. Working with a qualified tax and immigration consultant can help ensure a smooth transition and avoid any potential complications.