By means of Law 129 of 2020, the Private and Unique System of Beneficial Owners of legal entities in Panama was created. This system will be under the administration of the Superintendence of Non-Financial Subjects (SSNF), in order to guarantee the timely access of the competent authorities to the information of the beneficial owners of the legal entities registered in Panama, while guaranteeing the confidentiality and security of the system.
It is a system through which attorneys providing resident agent services in the Republic of Panama, register the legal entities incorporated in the Public Registry of Panama, and also register the final beneficiaries (natural persons) of these entities.
The Beneficial Ownership Registry Law does not distinguish according to the type or nature of the legal entity, nor the nationality or residence of the beneficial owners, so it applies to all legal entities incorporated in Panama, namely, corporations, private interest foundations, limited liability companies, including trusts, and to both nationals and foreigners who are the owners, partners, shareholders or main beneficiaries of the legal entity when they have substantial power over them.
The RUBF is administered and kept in custody by the Superintendence of Non-Financial Subjects (SSNF).
The natural person or persons who, directly or indirectly, own, control and/or exercise significant influence over the account relationship, contractual relationship, and/or business relationship or the natural person on whose behalf or for whose benefit a transaction is carried out, which also includes natural persons who exercise ultimate control over a legal entity.
Legal entity information: Name, folio, date of registration, address and main activity of the legal entity.
Information on the beneficial owners: Name, identity card or passport number, date of birth, nationality, address and date on which he/she became the legal entity’s beneficial owner.
Legal entities that must be registered are those that are in existence and have not been suspended or dissolved.
The information must be submitted within a peremptory term, subject to penalties in case of non-compliance.
Resident Agents must formalize the information registration in the Private and Unique System of Registration of Beneficial Owners within fifteen (15) business days following the date of incorporation or registration of the legal entity or its designation as a new Resident Agent in the Public Registry.
To protect against liability, the Resident Agent shall resign its designation if it does not receive from its client the information required to complete its due diligence.
Juan Pablo Fábrega Polleri