Tag Archives: ACS

Message for U.S. Citizens: Foreign Service Officer Test (FSOT)

Following is the latest ACS Message.

U.S. Department of State

Invites you to take action…

Your career starts by visiting our website at www.careers.state.gov where you can explore who we are, what we’re about, and more.  It’s also where you can register for the next Foreign Service Officer Test (FSOT).

All registrations for the Foreign Service Officer Test must be completed online.  The link to online registration will be available at our website and the registration package must be submitted at least 48 hours prior to the opening of the window.  The test will be offered quarterly, each year, and registration for the FSOT will be open on a continuous basis. 

  • Applicants must be citizens of the United States.
  • Applicants must be at least 20 years old.
  • Applicants must be available for worldwide assignment.
  • No specific level in a foreign language is required for applicants.

      Next test at US Embassy Panama will be on February 2nd, 2016 at 9:00 am.

Security Message for U.S. Citizens: TRAVEL ALERT – WORLDWIDE

Following is the latest ACS message:

The State Department alerts U.S. citizens to possible risks of travel due to increased terrorist threats. Current information suggests that ISIL (aka Da’esh), al-Qa’ida, Boko Haram, and other terrorist groups continue to plan terrorist attacks in multiple regions. These attacks may employ a wide variety of tactics, using conventional and non-conventional weapons and targeting both official and private interests. This Travel Alert expires on February 24, 2016.

Authorities believe the likelihood of terror attacks will continue as members of ISIL/Da’esh return from Syria and Iraq. Additionally, there is a continuing threat from unaffiliated persons planning attacks inspired by major terrorist organizations but conducted on an individual basis. Extremists have targeted large sporting events, theatres, open markets, and aviation services. In the past year, there have been multiple attacks in France, Nigeria, Denmark, Turkey, and Mali. ISIL/Da’esh has claimed responsibility for the bombing of a Russian airliner in Egypt.

U.S. citizens should exercise vigilance when in public places or using transportation. Be aware of immediate surroundings and avoid large crowds or crowded places. Exercise particular caution during the holiday season and at holiday festivals or events. U.S. citizens should monitor media and local information sources and factor updated information into personal travel plans and activities. Persons with specific safety concerns should contact local law enforcement authorities who are responsible for the safety and security of all visitors to their host country. U.S. citizens should:

Follow the instructions of local authorities. Monitor media and local information sources and factor updated information into personal travel plans and activities.
Be prepared for additional security screening and unexpected disruptions.
Stay in touch with your family members and ensure they know how to reach you in the event of an emergency.
Register in our Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
Foreign governments have taken action to guard against terrorist attacks, and some have made official declarations regarding heightened threat conditions. Authorities continue to conduct raids and disrupt terror plots. We continue to work closely with our allies on the threat from international terrorism. Information is routinely shared between the United States and our key partners in order to disrupt terrorist plotting, identify and take action against potential operatives, and strengthen our defenses against potential threats.

For further information:

See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Message for U.S. Citizens: FRENADESO and SUNTRACS Protests

Here is the latest ACS message.

FRENADESO and SUNTRACS announced protests from Porras Park to the National Assembly today (November 24, 2015). Expect major traffic disruptions throughout the city.

For up-to-date information on security, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department’s Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov. Further information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

U.S. citizens who travel to or reside in Panama are encouraged to enroll in the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). By enrolling, you make it easier for the U.S. Embassy to contact you in case of an emergency.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Outreach Trip to David, Chiriqui — December 9, 2015

Following is the latest ACS message.

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The American Citizen Services (ACS) Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Panama would like to inform U.S. citizens in Western Panama that we will be visiting David, Chiriqui on Wednesday, December 9, 2015 to provide consular services to U.S. citizens.

We will be at the Hotel Ciudad de David in David, Chiriqui from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, December 9, 2015. We will offer the following services:

– Applications for U.S. passports (these services will be processed in Panama)

– Passport Renewal (adults and minors)

– Adding Pages to Passports (requires surrendering passport)

– Lost or Stolen Passports

– Notarizations

– Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status (please bring from I-407 and Permanent Resident Card)

– Voting Registration (Please print and complete the form at: (http://registertovote.org/index.html)

IMPORTANT NOTICE

1. Please bring legible photocopies of all documents to be submitted.

2. Please bring the exact cash amount to pay for the service.

3. Please bring completed forms. Please access the following link for information on fees, and forms you need to download, complete and bring: http://panama.usembassy.gov/service.html

A representative from the Federal Benefits Unit (FBU) will be offering the following services:

– Medicare enrollment/cancellation (copy of current passport or cedula will be required)

– Application for SS replacement cards (copy of current US Passport)

– Application for new SS card for children under age 12 (copy of US Passport for one of the parents, the child’s copia integra and passport)

– Change of address/residence (copy of current passport or cedula will be required)

– General inquiries

A representative from our Regional Security Office will be on hand to answer security questions.

Please note: No visa services will be provided. Services will be provided on first come – first serve basis.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Elimination of Visa Page Inserts for U.S. Passports

Following is the latest ACS Message:

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After December 31, 2015, no more extra visa pages will be added to U.S. passports. Instead, 52-page passport books will be issued at no extra cost to U.S. citizens applying from outside the United States. This policy aims to lessen the burden that may be placed on frequent travelers who need more pages and those customers who may need to update residence permits or foreign entry/exit visas to comply with foreign country immigration practices. The determination to eliminate the visa page insert service was made to enhance the security of the passport and to abide by international passport standards. The fee for first-time passport applicants is $135; for passport renewals, $110.

Renew your passport early to make sure you have enough blank pages for visas stamps from other countries. Some require two blank pages for entry and exit. For more information on entry, exit, and foreign visa requirements, visit travel.state.gov.
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) at www.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.

If you are a U.S. citizen in need of urgent assistance, the emergency number for the U.S. Embassy/Consulate is 317-5000.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Social Security Benefits Proof of Life

Here is the latest ACS message.

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The Social Security Administration recently informed us that there are still over 500 Social Security recipients residing in Panama whohave not returned their proof of life form. In May/June each year these forms are sent to the mailing address recipients have on record with the SSA. A second request is mailed in October. If you have not yet returned your proof of life form, please do so immediately. The Social Security Administration will start suspending benefits effective with the payment dated February 3, 2016.

If you are receiving benefits from the Social Security Administration and wish to know if you are required to complete the proof of life form this year, or if you wish to obtain a blank form, please visit http://panama.usembassy.gov/ssai.html.

I and another U.S. citizen (Robert) are among the 500. Since they are mailing a second request in October, I plan on waiting until November 1 before I contact the Embassy in Panama City. I am not advising you to do this, just informing what I intend to do.

Message for U.S. Citizens:

Following is the latest ACS message.

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Due to the presence of high tides on the Pacific Coasts, SINAPROC (Civil Protection Authority Panama) has issued a “Yellow Alert”, which advises all inhabitants on the Pacific Coast to take preventive measures due to high tides which could cause flooding in coastal areas. In their announcement dated September 25, 2015, SINAPROC indicated that high tides of about 18 feet are expected to continue until Saturday October 3, 2015.

A “Yellow Alert” is an advisory for individuals about high tides during a specific period and to warn the public to avoid coastal areas in the Pacific, due to unsafe swimming conditions and possibilities of flooding. The ETESA’s (Empresa de Transmisión Eléctrica) Hydrometeorology Department has also posted related information which includes recommendations to avoid unsafe conditions.

The alert indicates that the months of September, October and November are the rainiest of the year. Rivers and streams can overflow when heavy rains coincide with high tide, causing flooding in vulnerable areas.

SINAPROC also indicated that there is no restriction for swimming in beaches as long as safety preventive measures are observed. U.S. Embassy Panama advises all individuals to heed this warning until the Yellow Alert has been lifted.

U.S. Embassy Outreach in Boquete

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I stopped in to the U.S. Embassy Outreach at the Boquete library yesterday. It was nice meeting a lot of new people and seeing several old friends.

I spoke with ACS Chief Cynthia Caplan this morning and she said they provided service to over 150 U.S. citizens and didn’t get done until after 5:00 PM.

Today, they were making their visits to the men and women’s prisons in Chiriqui.

Message for U.S. Citizens: Outreach in Boquete, Chiriqui-September 29, 2015

Following is the latest ACS messagedos_image

The American Citizen Services (ACS) Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Panama would like to inform U.S. citizens in Western Panama that we will be visiting Boquete, Chiriqui on Tuesday, September 29, 2015 to provide consular services to U.S. citizens.

We will be at the Boquete Public Library in Boquete, Chiriqui from 10:00a.m. to 3:00p.m. on Tuesday, September 29, 2015. We will offer the following services:

– Applications for U.S. passports (these services will be processed in Panama)

– Passport Renewal (adults and minors)

– Adding Pages to Passports (requires surrendering passport)

– Lost or Stolen Passports

– Notarizations

– Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status (please bring from I-407 and Permanent Resident Card)

– Voting Registration (Please print and complete the form at: http://registertovote.org/index.html)

IMPORTANT NOTICE

1. Please bring legible photocopies of all documents to be submitted.

2. Please bring the exact cash amount to pay for the service.

3. Please bring completed forms. Please access the following link for information on fees, and forms you need to download, complete and bring: http://panama.usembassy.gov/service.html

A representative from the Federal Benefits Unit (FBU) will be offering the following services:

– Medicare enrollment/cancellation (copy of current passport or cedula will be required)

– Application for SS replacement cards (copy of current US Passport)

– Application for new SS card for children under age 12 (copy of US Passport for one of the parents, the child’s copia integra and passport)

– Change of address/residence (copy of current passport or cedula will be required)

– General inquiries

Please note: No visa services will be provided. Services will be provided on first come – first serve basis.

Thank you for your assistance. We look forward to seeing you.

Sincerely,

American Citizen Services

U.S. Embassy Panama