Message for U.S. Citizens: Newsletter Available

The March issue of the American Citizen Services Newsletter is now available online.  Inside you will find information on requirements to continue receiving federal benefits, voting from overseas, filing taxes while abroad, and much more.

The newsletter is available in the ACS webpage under Alerts & Messages.  It may also be accessed directly from this message.  See full URLs below.

Alerts & Messages page:

http://panama.usembassy.gov/announcements_and_warden_messages/newsletter.html

Newsletter:

http://photos.state.gov/libraries/panama/1057633/ACSNewsletter/Panama ACS Newsletter – March 14.pdf

Attempting to locate a U.S. citizen

Message from the ACS in the U.S. Embassy in Panama City.

Hi dear Bocas del Toro and Chiriqui Wardens,
Greetings from the Consular Section!

We are attempting to locate a U.S. citizen named Rolando A. SUAZO, who is probably residing in Chiriqui or Bocas del Toro. We appreciate your assistance in posting a simple message in your websites, just asking Rolando A. Suazo to please contact the American Citizens Services Unit, Consular Section, tel: 317-5000.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Consular Section Closed February 26

Following is the latest ACS message:

THE U.S. CONSULAR SECTION (AMERICAN CITIZEN SERVICES, FEDERAL BENEFITS, AND VISAS UNITS) WILL BE CLOSED ON

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2014, DUE TO INTERNAL TRAINING

The entire Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Panama will be closed to the public on Wednesday, February 26, 2014.  No routine service will be available those days in the Visas, American Citizen Services, or Federal Benefits Units.  If you are an American Citizen and have an emergency, please contact the Embassy at 317-5000 and they will put you in contact with the appropriate officer.
On Thursday, February 27, 2014, the Consular Section will resume full operations with its regular schedule (please see http://panama.usembassy.gov).

*************************

LA SECCION CONSULAR (OFICINAS DE SERVICIOS A CIUDADANOS ESTADOUNIDENSES, BENEFICIOS FEDERALES Y VISAS) ESTARAN CERRADAS EL MIERCOLES, 26 DE FEBRERO DE 2014

POR ENTRENAMIENTO

La Sección Consular de la Embajada de los Estados Unidos en Panamá estará cerrada al público el día miercoles 26 de febrero de 2014.  No se realizarán trámites de rutina en las secciones de Visas, Servicios a Ciudadanos Estadounidenses ni Beneficios Federales durante esos días.  Si usted es un ciudadano estadounidense y tiene una emergencia, por favor llame a la Embajada al 317-5000, y ellos le pondrán en contacto con el oficial adecuado para atenderle.

La Sección Consular atenderá nuevamente al público en su horario regular (favor ver la siguiente página de internet: http://panama.usembassy.gov) a partir del día jueves, 27 de febrero de 2014.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Voting in Upcoming U.S. Elections

Here is the latest ACS message from the US Embassy in Panama City.

Dear U.S. Citizens,

If you want to vote in a Federal Primary or Special Election in March, April, or May 2014, you should visit http://www.fvap.gov/citizen-voter for information on registering to vote and requesting your absentee ballot according to State deadlines and requirements.

States must provide requested ballots 45 days before an election.  If you do not receive your requested State ballot at least 30 days before an election prepare, print and sign the backup Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) at http://www.fvap.gov/citizen-voter/overview.

March Primary and Special Election Dates:

Texas: March 4

Florida (Special General Election): March 11

Illinois: March 18

April Primary Date:

District of Columbia: April 1

May Primary Dates:

Indiana: May 6

North Carolina: May 6

Ohio: May 6

West Virginia: May 13

Nebraska: May 13

Idaho: May 20

Georgia: May 20

Oregon: May 20

Arkansas: May 20

Kentucky: May 20

Pennsylvania: May 20

Texas (Primary Runoff): May 27

View the complete 2014 Primary Election Calendar at FVAP.gov for more information.

Check your State’s election website for specific information on candidates, elections, contact information and links to your local election offices.

Regards,

The ACS Team

American Citizen Services |  Embassy of the United States of America | Panama City, Panama

Chiriqui Outreach-12 & 13 Feb 2014

The David and Boquete Outreach by the US Embassy in Panama City has been scheduled. A town hall will also be held in Boquete.

All,
Our outreach trip next week is planned and approved. Attached is our notice and DHL instructions for returning passports by DHL. The DCM will host a Boquete town hall on Thursday morning, 09:00 am at the Boquete Library. Please disseminate the information to residents in Chiriqui.

For future planning, we are tentatively scheduling outreach to Chiriqui in May, August, and November. As we approach those months we will start providing specific dates. Thanks again for all your help!

Respectfully,

Chris Reyes
Vice-Consul, ACS Chief
U.S. Embassy, Panama

Click for Outreach notice:

Click for DHL instructions:.

February US Embassy Outreach

I just received the following message related to US Embassy Outreach in Chiriquí.

NOTE: This is a pre announcement. When the details are finalized, they will be posted.

Dear Wardens,

We would like to inform you that the first of our planned outreaches for 2014 are being finalized.  We will be sending an ACS officer and ACS assistant out to Chiriqui and Bocas del Toro in February.  We plan to be in David on 12 Feb and Boquete on 13 Feb.  A separate team will be in Bocas on 12 Feb.

We are tweaking the details of the days but we anticipate having a Boquete town hall with the DCM on 13 Feb.  We just wanted to start getting the word out to your areas.  As we finalize budget and plans we will start sending more concrete instructions, times, and details.

Respectfully,

Chris Reyes

Vice-Consul, ACS Chief

U.S. Embassy, Panama

This email is UNCLASSIFIED.

Security Note – Protest Activity Scheduled for Clayton, Panama

Dear Wardens — ACS would appreciate your assistance in passing the below information to U.S. Citizens in your area.  A MASCOT message will go out shortly also.  Thank you!

United States Embassy Panama

Security Message for U.S. Citizens:  Demonstrations in Clayton, Panama

3 January 2014

FRENADESO is planning a march in Clayton for today, January 3, 2014.  This march is scheduled to begin at the traffic circle where Clayton and Albrook intersect at approximately 4:00 p.m. and proceed to the U.S. Embassy where the marchers plan to picket in a symbolic gesture.  This is part of a series of FRENADESO activities called Operation Sovereignty to mark the 50-year anniversary of the events commemorated on National Sovereignty Day (January 9th).

While we do not expect the march to be violent, we do expect it will impede traffic flow both through the area and specially in and out of the Embassy.  We recommend U.S. Citizens plan their travel accordingly and we recommend that you avoid any confrontations.  If you note violent activity or danger, please notify the U.S. Embassy immediately.

Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Panama enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) atwww.Travel.State.Gov.  STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don’t have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Regularly monitor the State Department’s website, where you can find current Travel Warnings, (including the Travel Warning for Panama if appropriate), Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Specific Information for Panama.  For additional information, refer to “A Safe Trip Abroad” on the State Department’s website.

Contact the U.S. embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).  Follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App to have travel information at your fingertips.

The U.S. Embassy/Consulate in Panama is located at 783 Avenida Denetrio B. Lakas, Clayton, Panama and is open Mon-Thu, 08:00 am-12:30 pm, 1:30 pm-3:00 pm and Friday 08:00 am – 10:00 am.  If you are a U.S. citizen in need of urgent assistance, the emergency number for the U.S. Embassy/Consulate is 317-5000.

Respectfully,

Chris Reyes

Vice-Consul, ACS Chief

U.S. Embassy, Panama

This email is UNCLASSIFIED.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Taking the Foreign Service Officer Test in Panama

Here is the latest US Embassy message from the ACS in Panama City.

Dear U.S. Citizens:

On 4 February, the U.S. Embassy will host the next Foreign Service Officer Test (FSOT).  Anyone wishing to register for the FSOT must do so online athttp://www.careers.state.gov/officer/selection-process

If you wish to take the FSOT in Panama, you must register by 0900 (U.S. Central Time) on 21 January.  In order to apply to the Foreign Service you must be

  • A citizen of the United States
  • At least 20 years old
  • Available for worldwide assignment

There is no specific level in a foreign language required to apply to the Foreign Service.

The Department of State offers the FSOT three times a year.  For more information on the Foreign Service, who we are, what we’re about, and more, visit us athttp://www.careers.state.gov/index-page.html.

Regards,

The ACS Team

American Citizen Services | Embassy of the United States of America | Panama City, Panama

Message for U.S. Citizens: Social Security update

Here is the latest message from the US Embassy in Panama City.

Statement of Carolyn W. Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, on New Payments to Same-Sex Married Couples

December 16, 2013

“I am pleased to announce that, effective today, Social Security is processing some widow’s and widower’s claims by surviving members of same-sex marriages and paying benefits where they are due. In addition, we are able to pay some one-time lump sum death benefit claims to surviving same-sex spouses. As I stated shortly after the Supreme Court decision on Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, our goal is to treat all Americans with dignity and respect.

We ask for continued patience from the public as we work closely with the Department of Justice to develop policies that are legally sound so we can process claims.

If you believe you may be eligible for Social Security, I encourage you to apply now to protect against the loss of any potential benefits. We will process claims as soon as additional instructions become finalized.”

To learn more, please visit http://www.socialsecurity.gov/same-sexcouples.