Help in Emergency

Your Itinerary

For you to be found in an emergency case, we advise you to leave a detailed itinerary with your family or friends in the United States, with the following information: names, address and phone numbers of people and places to be visited. Also, be sure to include a photocopy of your passport information page.

While You Are Overseas

To avoid worries, try to tell your relatives or friends in the U.S. if you change your travel plans, such as missing a flight or extending yours. If you are in civil unrest or even a natural disaster, please remember to contact your relatives or friends at home, so that they know that you are safe. Additionally, you should contact the U.S. embassy or consulate whenever you arrive in a foreign country, in order to register your presence and thus keep the American consul informed of your whereabouts.

Obey Foreign Laws

When traveling to a foreign country, you will be subject to local laws. It helps if you learn about local laws and regulations and obey them, Do not deliver a package to anyone unless you know the person well and make sure it does not contain drugs or other contraband. Drugs Arrests, Unfortunately, every year about 3.000 Americans are imprisoned in foreign countries. Of that number, about one-third are arrested on drug charges. Because of this, there are many countries that have severe drug laws that apply strict penalties. In case you are caught buying, selling, carrying or using any kind of narcotics, you will be arrested. Upon arrest, you will be subject to foreign laws abroad, not the U.S. laws.

When you are arrested, you will find that:

– Few countries in the world provide a popular jury trial; – Judgments in the other countries are often lengthy, with delays and postponements; – Most countries abroad do not accept bail; – Pre-empitve prisons, which usually occur by solitary confinement, can last for months; – If you are convicted, you face a possible sentence of – 2-10 years in many countries; – A minimum of 6 years or hard work and an expensive fine in some countries; – The death penalty is enforced in several countries (for example Malaysia, Pakistan, Turkey, Thailand, Saudi Arabia).

When you are arrested in another country, you are subject to local laws, so there is not much that a consular officer can do if you have legal problems. One of these limitations is the fact that a consular officer can not take you away from prison, however, they may provide you with a list of a local lawyers to represent your case. At the time you are arrested, you must ask the local authorities to notify a consular officer of the U.S. Embassy because you have the right to talk to the consul, according to agreements and legal practices. If your right is denied, you can try to ask someone to contact the U.S. consul officer.

As soon as the U.S. authorities are informed of your arrest, they will certainly visit you and inform you of your rights under local law, and if you request, they will contact your family. You can be sure that these officials will try their best to protect your rights. One of the things that U.S. consuls can do for you is to transfer money, food, and clothing from your family to you. More than that, their intention is to keep you intact and away from unfair or unfavorable situations, in the case of inhuman or unhealthy conditions.