CL&A SAS – Corporate Constitutions: How to create a Colombian Corporation
At Colombia Legal & Accounting SAS, we are experts in creating corporations and ensuring ongoing compliance with Colombian laws. We have assisted in the set up of hundreds of companies, including:
- Simplified Stock Corporations (known as SAS in Colombia)
- Multinational Corporations
- Sole Proprietorships
- Limited Liability Corporations and Partnerships
- Branch Offices of Foreign Companies
There are many good reasons to establish a Colombian corporation, including:
- It limits the personal liability of shareholders and owners.
- Business owners may qualify for a Colombian residency visa.
- There are tax benefits.
- Shareholders are anonymous in the Colombian SAS and SA type corporations.
CL&A SAS has an experienced team of Colombian attorneys, Colombian accountants, and assistants who will streamline the process of setting up a Colombian corporation and prevent the headaches normally associated with creating a corporation. We will file the necessary documents and wait in multiple lines to complete your corporate formation.
Our team will handle all phases of the process and provide a transparent tracking system with daily updates so you can follow the creation of your corporation from start to finish. We also adhere to strict timelines to ensure you have a smooth experience. Below we have a time line which can help you to understand different steps involved in creating a SAS corporation in Colombia. What is important to understand is that the Chamber of Commerce or the DIAN could at anytime implement new requirements or have computer system errors. Normally a couple times a year changes are implemented in one or more of these agencies and may cause delays in a company creation process. Also this time line is based on a person or persons being share holders. Normally multinational corporations setting up a company in Colombia will have a much larger lead time in preparing documents to be accepted by the DIAN and Colombian Chamber of Commerce. Please contact James Lindzey directly at James@MedellinAttorney.com for more information on this process. Keep the following time line in mind when you are studying how to Create a Colombian Corporation.
SAS Company Creation Process Time Line (2-3 Days)
|1||Company Constitution & DIAN Corporate Tax ID, & Legal Representative Tax ID||1 Days|
|2||Chamber of Commerce||1-2 Days|
|3||Financial Certifications||1 Day|
Bank Account Setup Times (See Details)
|4||Bank Account for Corporation *Bank Accounts can only be open by persons with a valid Colombian ID Card (cedula or cedula de extranjeria)||1-2 Days|
|5||Investment Account for Corporation, which can handle international wire transfers for investments made in Colombia. This is optional if the legal representative has a Colombian ID but the investment account is the only option available if a foreigner wishes to open an account. Other main purposes of this type of account is to||15 Days|
|6||Wire to Colombia – Investment in Capital with Wire Transfer for SAS company (Other funding options available)||1-2 Days|
|7||Register Investment with Colombian Federal Bank via Legalizaition Process and USD to Colombian pesos||1 Day|
Business Owner’s Visa & Investor’s Visa Time Lines
|1||Solicit Certification of Investment from Federal Bank (for 5 year visa)||15 Days|
|2||Accounting Certificates||1 Day|
|3||Visa Application Approval||3-5 Days *in Colombia|
|4||Visa Stamping in Bogota / Consulate||3-5 Days|
|5||Cédula Extranjería Application (the Colombian version of the green card for foreigners)||2 hours|
|6||Cédula Processing||10-15 Days|
|7||Pick Up Cédula at Migración Colombia||1 hour|
REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL COLOMBIAN CORPORATIONS
1) Tax Filings – Every form of Colombian corporation must file tax documents throughout the year. Some companies are obligated to file monthly, while others need to report every few months.
2) Colombian Accountants – All companies must have an accountant to manage payment of sales tax and withholding taxes for providers and employees, if applicable. Accountants also must pay employee taxes which are similar to employee benefits in other countries. The accountant must have current understanding of Colombian labor laws to maintain legal compliance because the Ministry of Labor in Colombia favors employees and protects their rights when interpreting the Colombian Constitution in a dispute.
At CL&A, we provide the following corporate services:
- Formation of various types of corporations and partnerships
- Preparation of all necessary documents
- Hand-delivery and processing of all documents in a timely manner
- Daily updates and tracking during the entire process
- Ongoing Colombian accounting support after company formation
- Payment of required taxes and benefits for employees, providers, etc.
- Colombian tax planning and filing required tax documents as needed (monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, etc.)
- Ongoing advice about Colombian labor laws and Colombia payroll employee benefit issues
- Preparing and processing Colombia residency visa applications for business owners
- Obtaining the Colombian ID card (cédula) for Colombian investor’s visa recipients
Contact us today with any questions or to make an appointment to discuss your specific business needs.