Running a Business

Having expert and timely advice during the running stage of your business is essential for its success. Especially when the business is located in a country other than your own, where the laws and business practices and customs are different.

Commercial Contracts

When you agree to purchase from a supplier, usually, you accept their terms and conditions. When you agree to sell your goods or services, usually, you set the terms and conditions. For either type of transactions, purchase or sale, it is important to understand the obligations and liabilities you agree to. When purchasing you seldom have the opportunity to vary contract terms. Nevertheless, you should be aware of the meaning of such terms. Sometimes you may be able to negotiate contract terms depending on your relative positions of strength. When selling, you usually are able to impose contract terms to your advantage, within the bounds of commercial reality.

Commercial Disputes

If you are involved in a dispute with a customer or supplier, it is important to consider all your potential courses of action. Your first instinct may be to sue, but first instincts are not always right. If your dispute is with an important customer or client, it may be unwise to choose an action that will damage your relationship permanently. In such circumstances, litigation could be an inappropriate action. You certainly need to be aware of your legal position and chances of being successful in court should it come to that. You should also consider the advantages of negotiation, mediation and arbitration before deciding on going to court.

Commercial Property

Most organizations need premises from which to operate their business. The decision as to whether lease or purchase commercial property is usually made primarily on commercial grounds, but the legal aspects need to be considered. If you lease commercial premises, you should attempt to negotiate the terms and conditions of the lease agreement to the extent possible. Once you execute the lease agreement, you need to be fully aware of your rights and obligations under it and of the timescales and procedures to follow during the life of the lease. If not, consequences can be dire.

Company Purchases and Sales

For many businesses there will come a time to sell, a decision that may be taken for any number of reasons, but is usually taken to reap the benefits of the years of hard work. Also purchasing another business will be part of a growth strategy or of entering quickly into new markets. Constant awareness and preparation for such possibilities should be part of your everyday business strategy.

Directors Liabilities

If you are a director of a corporation, you have obligations under the law. As a director, you are responsible for complying with the requirements of disclosure and good practices under our laws. Failure to act in accordance with the law can make you liable to fines and even criminal prosecution. You should be aware of your rights and obligations as a director of a corporation.

Labour and Employment

No area in the world of commerce does the law present more controversial legislation than in labour and employment. Most businesses employ people and are subject to the laws and penalties included in our employment laws. All businesses must therefore take the necessary steps to remain aware and in compliance of labour and employment laws.

Employment Contracts

An employer and employee relationship involves a contract between both of these parties, whether it is in the form of a written document or in a loosely defined oral agreement. However, it is unwise for any employer to abstain from using contracts in writing. If an employer does not have a written contract, the employee’s version of the terms of employment will most likely prevail in a litigious situation.

Employee Terminations

An employer cannot dismiss an employee without following a procedure set out by our Labor Code. Failing to do so may lead to an unfair dismissal claim. Therefore, any employer contemplating on dismissing an employee should seek professional advice before taking action. It is otherwise easy to fall stray of the law and therefore incur in avoidable expenses and troubles.

Work Regulations or Handbooks

Every company with ten or more employees must have duly registered work regulations. These regulations must set out the basic obligations and responsibilities of the employees and the employer in the work place and registration in the Employment Ministry in necessary. Without proper work regulations in place, an employer cannot impose sanctions (pecuniary or other) on its employees. Having properly drafted work regulations is beneficial to the proper running of the business.

Permanent Resident Visa as a Qualified Investor


The subcategory of Permanent Resident as Qualified Investor has been created in the Republic of Panama within the immigration category of Permanent Resident for Economic Reasons. This subcategory was created by Executive Decree No. 722 of October 15, 2020 promulgated through Official Digital Gazette No. 29136 of October 16, 2020, the date of its entry […]

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Law 159 of August 31, 2020


Through Law 159 of August 31, 2020, the Special Regime for the Establishment and Operation of Multinational Companies for the Provision of Services Related to Manufacturing (EMMA), was created. Its purpose is to attract and promote investments in production processes and the generation of jobs and technology transfer, as well as to make Panama more […]

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Law 157 of August 3, 2020


Today, August 3, 2020, Law 157 of the same date, establishing temporary employment protection measures for companies affected by COVID-19, was promulgated. The main aspects of this law are the following: This law applies to companies that closed their operations, totally or partially, from the beginning of the state of national emergency due to COVID-19 […]

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COVID-19: Executive Decree 100 of July 1, 2020


On July 2, 2020, Executive Decree No. 100 of July 1, 2020 entered into force in Panama, extending the temporary suspension of the effects of employment contracts and dictating other provisions. Companies whose restart of operations has not been authorized The temporary suspension of the effects of the employment contracts of companies whose restart of […]

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