Situated at the center of the American Continent the Republic of Panama links the two oceans with one of the world’s great inter-oceanic waterways, The Panama Canal. Panama has become a prominent jurisdiction in the international maritime community administering one of the world’s largest fleet of vessels. Its status offers many advantages both to the ship-owners and to mortgages. Between these advantages, we must note the incentives regarding the fiscal laws of Panama. All the activities of vessels registered in Panama done outside the country are not subject to income taxes or any other levy. For more than 70 years, the Republic of Panama has offered various facilities for the registration of vessels engaged in all type of maritime activity.
Pleasure Yacht Registration in Panama
Panama does not have any restriction as to ownership nationalities.
Original measurement survey is not required in Panama.
For provisional yacht registration it is necessary to provide:
- The certification from owners indicating that the yacht will be used for pleasure and not for commercial activities. (This document must be submitted duly notarized and authenticated by a Panamanian Consulate at the place of its issuance or duly legalized by Apostille).
- The application form for newly constructed and used yacht which has been registered elsewhere before. It should be duly filled in and submitted. Before proceeding with the application form we will check the name availability.
- The Power of Attorney with apostille granted by the owner to our lawyers at Panama who are going to present you in the procedure.
- Payment confirmation
The invoice will be provided after we have received all necessary documents from you and have checked suitability.
The Provisional Patent of Navigation and Radio License have validity of 6 months. During this period, we have to provide original documents in order to obtain the Permanent Patent (validity 2 years) and to avoid the fine of US$ 500.00, plus the extensions fees (US$ 50.00 x month).
In most cases, yachts don’t need to make contracts with Radio accounting entities and by law it is permitted here in Panama that the owners be responsible for radio communication. This means that you only need to provide the type and brand of radio equipment on board. But if you need Radio Accounting company we have one, here is the link for the contract.
Ship Station License
Provisional License is valid for six (6) months, during this period you should send the application duly filled, with all the equipment to apply for the permanent Radio Station Statutory License valid for four (4) years. If you do not apply for the permanent, you must pay extensions fees US$ 150.00 for three month of extension.
If you prefer, we can apply to obtain the Permanent Patent and Ship Station License, at the moment of the flag registration, presenting the above mentioned original documents. It will be necessary to provide us with the radio application form duly filled with all equipments on board of the vessels, including their INMARSAT activations reports. The permanent patent and radio license has a validity of 2 years from the registration date.
Permanent yacht registration requirements:
- Power of Attorney, in favor of your legal representative/lawyer duly notarized and authenticated by a Panamanian Consulate at the place of its issuance or legalized by Apostille Seal.
- Original or certified true copy (apostilled) of Bill of Sale, whereby the vessel is owned by the applicant or transferred to the new owner that is applying for registration. In some cases, not necessarily the yachts change owner when being transferred to a registry, so the existing ownership title or Bill of Sale is enough.
- Original or certified copy (apostilled) of the construction certificate in case the yacht is newly constructed.
- If yacht is over 100 feet, the PMA (Panama Maritime Authority) may ask for ITC (International Tonnage certificate) or other documents, also for RAA (radio accounting company) and other matters.
- Finally, an original Deletion Certificate if the yacht is not newly constructed or has been already registered in a previous registry. (NOTE: This deletion is not necessary for provisional registration.)
Commercial yacht registration
Yachts for commercial purpose need to be registered in Panama as a regular vessel, thereby all applicable technical documents are necessary (ISM, ISPS, ITC, etc.)
Fee schedule for pleasure yacht registration
- Panama Registry Tax: US$1,500.00 (owner is foreign company/person), US$1,000.00 (owner is Panamanian company/person)
- Legal fees: US$1,250.00
- Administrative expenses: US$450.00
- 24 Hrs registration
Same Day Service with courier delivery US$1,250.00
There are not restrictions upon of the ownership of shares of Panamanian corporation, nor are there any nationality or residence requirements for the Directors or officers of Panamanian Company.
The articles of the Incorporation can be executed in any language.
The registration of the Company is ready in 3 – 4 working days.
There are not particular paid-in capital requirements and shares may therefore be subscribed for at the discretion of the Board of Directors. The shares may be issued in bearer or registered form and no reporting nor deposit requirements are imposed in connection therewith.
The authorized capital of a company may be expressed in any currency.
An offshore Panamanian Corporation pay an annual tax only of US$ 300.00, since income derived or produced outside of the territory of the Republic of Panama is not subject to taxation in Panama.
An Offshore Panamanian Corporation is not required to file any financial reports.
Company Name: It can be in any language with indication that is an offshore company. For example (S.A., Inc., Corporation, Incorporated).
Company Address and address in Panama has to be maintained at all times.
Board of Director: President, Secretary and Treasurer: The minimum of directors should be 3, and the directors and officers of the corporation can be from any country. Please provide us with the information of the directors and officers of the corporation: complete name, passport number, nationality, domicile and copy of the passport.
It is not necessary that the directors and officer of the corporation be the owners of such company.
If you wish our office can provide you the services of nominee directors.
It is a usual practice allow by the Panamanian law, in order to assist the owners of the corporations, in case that they wish not to appear mentioned on the said corporation.
Furthermore, the company annually should pay the Annual Franchise Tax of US$ 300.00. This charge must be paid every year in order to keep the validity of the company under Panamanian Government.
The first Annual Tax is cover by our office and from the second year, the pay must be done by the owners of the company before the three months of its annual anniversary from the original registry. If the owners have some delay in the payment, it will be necessary to pay a surcharge of US $ 50.00 by year or half year, it will depend of the special case and of the date of the incorporation.
In cases of companies not paying its annual tax for more than one year, in addition to the surcharge, there will be a penalty of US$250.00 to be applied and also a marginal note will be posted in the record of the company suspending services. Upon settlement of all outstanding the marginal note will be lifted and the company restored.
NOTE:The companies constituted in the period between January and June must pay them Annual Tax before June 30th, and the ones constituted between July and December must cancel the mentioned Tax before December 31.
The Fee Schedule
Formation of Panamanian Corporation: Articles of Incorporation in English and Spanish (Notarized & Apostilled), Appointment of First Directors, Shareholder certificates, Minute, Inscription before Public Registry Offices, Public Registry Cert., 1st Annual Franchise Tax, Books (3) Notary Fees, Offices Expenses, Company Seal, Resident Agent US$ 1670.00
Nominee director per year US $ 375.00
General Power of Attorney US $ 350.00
Annual renewal fees to be paid after the second year of the company US$ 1450.00