Aspects Of A Panama Foundation
Panama Foundation Ingredients
A Panama Foundation consists of 6 ingredients which are unique amongst legal entities:
1. Panama Foundation Founder: The Founder of the Panama Foundation is the individual who sets up the foundation in the Panama Public Registry. Our Panama law firm is the usual Founder of the Panama Foundation we establish. The Founder has no influence or control over a Panama Foundation. The only function for a Founder of a Panama Foundation is to file the incorporation documents with Panama’s Public Registry.
2. Panama Foundation Council: A Panama Foundation Council is similar t a corporation’s Board of Directors. The names of the Panama Foundation Council members are filed with the Panama Public Registry making them available to the public. For this reason, most of our clients prefer that we appoint a “Nominee” Panama Foundation Council who works for us so our clients receive total confidentiality and privacy. Our Nominee Panama Foundation Council members can be replaced by our clients at any time since we provide them with undated & signed letters of resignation. The Nominee Panama Foundation Council merely fulfills a requirement under Panama law to exist and be named in the Public registry and have no power or control over the assets or business of the Panama Foundation.
3. Panama Foundation Protector: It’s the Protector who controls all assets and affairs of a Panama Foundation. The Panama Foundation Council appoints the Protector. The Protector can even remove the Panama Foundation Council members. The Protector is appointed in a private manner by way of a Private Protectorate Document signed by the Panama Foundation Council. Thus, there are no public records naming the Protector.
Our client is almost always appointed as the Protector for the Panama Foundation. In rare cases, our client may wish for someone else who he or she trusts to be named the Protector.
4. Panama Foundation Beneficiaries: The Panama Foundation does not issue share certificates like a corporation does. Unlike a company, a Panama Foundation doesn’t have owners. The beneficiaries are similar to that of heirs named in a Will or the beneficiaries in a Trust. The Panama Foundation Beneficiaries are named by the Protector in a private document called the Letter of Wishes or in a formal Panama Foundation Bylaws prepared by our Panama law firm. Since the Letter of Wishes and the Panama Foundation Bylaws are never filed for public access, our client’s can maintain the highest level of confidentiality and privacy. A Panama Foundation can also be established where the Protector is the only beneficiary until his or her death and then continues to benefit other named future beneficiaries.
5. Panama Foundation Letter of Wishes: The Letter of Wishes is a simple letter prepared by the Protector describing the Panama foundation’s assets, how they should be managed or distributed upon his or her death or incapacity (mental or physical). This letter will declare if the Panama Foundation should continue to exist, who the replacement Protector will be, or be dissolved when the Protector dies. The Letter of Wishes does not have to be written in any formal style and can be changed at any time by the Protector. While the Letter of Wishes can be filed with the Public Registry, most people prefer confidentiality and privacy so the letter remains private.
6. Panama Foundation Bylaws: The Panama Foundation is not required to have Bylaws. The Letter of Wishes is normally the only document specifying how the Panama Foundation is maintained and what occurs when the Protector passes away or incapacitated. However, if a client wishes to have a formal Panama Foundation Bylaws, we can prepare one in place of the Letter of Wishes and have it notarized by a Public Notary. The Panama foundation Bylaws will list all assets, describe how they should be maintained, list the names of the beneficiaries, and describe the events which will trigger either the replacement of the Protector or dissolution of the Panama Foundation. The Panama Foundation Bylaws can be privately held or filed with the Public Registry. Most people prefer confidentiality and privacy to protect the Protector and Beneficiaries anonymity.