Tourists usually receive a 3 or 6 month permit to visit Panama upon arrival, and most go back to their home country well before this period is over. However, tourists may overstay for many reasons, including falling in love with Panama.
Overstaying your tourist permit in Panama comes with fines, detention, or deportation. The specific consequences will depend on the length of your overstay and the circumstances surrounding it.
For starters, overstaying your visit results in a $50.00 fine per month. This must be paid prior to your departure at the main Immigration Office located on Ricardo J. Alfaro Avenue. If you find yourself in this situation you can contact Kraemer & Kraemer a few weeks prior to your departure to help you complete the appropriate paperwork and schedule a visit to pay the fine. Once the fine is paid, you will have 5 days to leave the country.
Useful Tip – If you attempt to pay the overstay fine by yourself, do not sign anything that you do not understand. You might be signing a voluntary deportation or an entry ban.
It is also possible to pay the fine once you leave the country, which must be completed within 7 days upon departure. However, this option requires a power of attorney and your original passport to pay the fine.
What happens if you overstay, leave Panama, and do not pay the overstay fine?
Although it sounds like a tempting option, this may result in a 2-year or 5-year entry ban. Also, be mindful that carrying expired immigration documentation may result in detention by immigration authorities and possible deportation from the country.
Prevent overstay fines
One option to prevent overstay fines is requesting a tourist permit extension. Kraemer & Kraemer can also help you with this process. The final decision will be at the discretion of the immigration authorities.
Following Panama’s immigration rules will keep you out of trouble. If you need to stay in Panama for an extended period of time, our recommendation is to book a consultation with our legal experts to discuss the best course of action.
For questions email us at email@example.com Our legal team has the knowledge and experience to assist your case.