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About Bud

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    Expert Member
  • Birthday August 8

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  • Real Name:
    Bud Huber
  • Reason for registering:
    Live and/or work in Chiriqui
  • Location of primary residence:
    In Chiriqui
  • Birth (home) country:

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  1. It is my understanding that applications for residency (as well as citizenship) -- using any of several different programs, e.g., pensionado, reforestation, Friendly Nations, permanent residency, etc., etc. -- mandate said applications be submitted by licensed attorneys. TwoSailors is correct: if one plans to retire legally in Panama, then you will be dealing with an attorney. (Hopefully a competent attorney.) Getting one's non-Panamanian marriage registered on the Registro Civil can be done without an attorney.
  2. Update as of 3:45PM today. Electrical service was restored approximately 2.30PM this afternoon. We then headed to Alto Boquete to pick up Anouk from The Dog Spot (Roberto Rios). We noticed on that outbound leg that the broken power pole had been replaced with what we believe is a concrete pole. That was really quick work to our way of thinking. So Keith's concern was addressed -- there was no electrical service during this period of service restoration. About six hours of outage. And although we have no pictures of the new power pole, what we saw suggested that the high physical tension issue was resolved on the high electrical tension lines. And then on the return home leg, I was able to take several more pictures. From the pictures you can see that these were large and heavy limbs and trunk sections. The residue is on the roadway, not on dirt alongside the roadway. Just a bit curious as to what caused the tree to come down???
  3. Marcelyn and I were headed to The Dog Spot for Anouk's grooming appointment this morning (about 9:30am), when we were blocked by a downed tree and a power pole on the opposite side of the roadway that was about to come down. It was a HUGE tree. Location of the problem is about 1/2 kilometer north of Café Ruiz. Workers were just arriving and beginning to place warning cones, etc. We had to turn around, and go around the valley in order to get into town, and then faced several streets there that were closed for construction of the water works project. We eventually got Anouk to Roberto at The Dog Spot, but a bit late for our appointment. He was understanding of the situation. When we did finally get back home we discovered that our entire area is without electricity. I started up the generator (again, harrumph!). I suspect this is going to be a long service restoration job. Here is the only picture that I was able to take of the scene.
  4. I suspect there is no hard and fast rule on what actions the authorities are allowed to take or do actually take. To my way of thinking it would depend on where you are, the "mood" of the officials, how you present yourself, possibly how much money you actually do have, and maybe other factors. Not trying to frighten anyone here, but Marcelyn and I were in a Central American country returning to Panama on a COPA flight, and you would not believe the hassle a lady traveler was going through. All of the "action" was not at the normal security screening station, but rather at a boarding gate inspection station. At one point she had five armed officers surrounding her, and each of the five was counting every currency bill that she had in her purse and her carry-on luggage. It looked like a Gestapo field day. The process was a bit more than 30 minutes, which had to be frightening minutes for her and her children (no husband). She eventually was allowed to board the plane, and we could only hope that she had all of her money. One thing the two of us talked about on that return flight, assuming the officials had seized some of her money, was whether said funds would go into pockets of the officers, or into government coffers, or both. Would she be able to reclaim seized funds at a later date? Who knows for sure other than her? But we suspect not.
  5. A very important paragraph in the above citation reads (the highlighting of text is of my doing): Don't be caught by surprise.
  6. Marcelyn and I attended the Sunday matinee of the Dixie Swim Club earlier this afternoon. Mark's above review is right on target. We totally enjoyed the performance. Only five actors (actually actresses, to be politically correct) on stage. There were some very good lines in the script, lines that brought back memories, some good vibes and some not so good vibes. The best way to describe my emotions is to call them "touching and poignant." It was a full house, and a standing ovation at the end of the performance. Not wanting to take anything away from any of the performers or performances because they were all very good, but Gabrielle, who was one of the five roles (the fallen nun), was also the show's director. She obviously did a superb job. We hope that she will continue to bless our community with more of her creative energies. If you have not seen this show yet, you owe it to yourself to go, assuming tickets are still available. Kudos to all. And then we ended today with seven of us getting together for dinner at Big Daddy's Grill. Does life get any better?
  7. Ted, We had a similar problem several years ago. Our contractor had replaced our 60 gallon electric tank water heater that supported one-half of our home (the other half is supported by a gas on-demand system). There were two reasons for swapping out the electric tank for gas on-demand: (a) the tank system was old and beginning to fail, and (b) reduce monthly utility expenses. The initial replacement system (I don't recall the brand name) exhibited the same symptoms that you mentioned above. It wasn't the water flow, the water pressure (>45 psi), nor the D-size batteries, etc., etc. Our contractor actually replaced the failing system with a Titan brand gas on-demand water heater about one month after we gave up on the initial on-demand water heater. Been working fine ever since. I keep all documentation for these kinds of items. See the attached manual (with certain pages deleted, such as serial number, invoicing, etc.). Please do NOT ask me how much, where purchased, etc. I am simply providing information about the particular model that was installed in June 2015. 58cebb813d642_TitanCalentadorAutomaticoGasWaterHeaterextracts_Redacted.pdf
  8. http://bsaefiling.fincen.treas.gov/NoRegFBARFiler.html I finally learned what BSA stands for, and no I am not referring to Boy Scouts of America. It is the Bank Secrecy Act, which is administered by part of the Treasury Department; BSA is NOT enforced by the IRS, but rather the FinCEN (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) part of the Treasury Department. It is still paperwork that needs to be done regardless of who enforces it. Here is the PDF to start from, or you can download from the above link: NFFBAR.pdf
  9. I am not an attorney, but this sounds bogus to me. It is my understanding of The Hague Convention that addresses apostilling of documents that only the designated authority (typically known as a secretary of state) over the issuance of vital records documents can apostille said document. For a secretary of state of a different country/state to apostille a document would, most likely, NOT be recognized, and technically speaking would be contrary to The Hague Convention protocols. So no, I would not recommend doing the Zimbabwe thing. As a side comment, Steven, it sounds as if you two travel even more extensively than we do. That is a lot. Good on you. We call such worldly travelers "international citizens" because it gives one a different perspective on how things are on a much broader perspective. I recall one former school mate when I went to a high school reunion; he had never traveled outside of the county where my high school was located. His breadth of conversational topics was quite narrow, focusing on the selection of food at the local Burger King and the highest score of his recent bowling tournament. Not wanting to be judgmental here, but that seemed so sad to me.
  10. Marcelyn and I were married in the USA, but were successful in getting our US wedding documentation recognized in the Registro Civil here in Panama. There was a tangential comment to this effect in a separate posting here on CL at http://www.chiriqui.life/topic/1921-question-about-attorney-fees/?do=findComment&comment=6072. We did not provide many details about that process, but would be willing to elaborate if there is interest. Be advised that we seriously considered "getting re-married" here in Panama, but decided against it for some of the same reasons that Dan mentioned. We did not want to lie about not being married, and, yes, we do understand the distinction about not being married in Panama while being married in the USA. We are glad that we did things the way we did. The process did take a long time, however, but only because of administrative (read "paperwork") snafus. BTW, our primary motivation for getting our US marriage recognized and legally documented in Panama was related to a person being able to make legally binding decisions for a spouse who is incapacitated by accident or natural causes.
  11. To my way of thinking, the title for this topic might be better worded if it read in more general terms: "Be Legal Wherever You Are". Just a thought.
  12. Our housekeeper tells us that the maleante apparently was stealing vegetables so that he could sell them on the local market. The maleante did lose one complete foot from the hacking with a machete by the homeowner; the other foot was damaged but repaired. Our housekeeper also tells us that the homeowner is being charged with a crime, but we don't know the particulars. This is a situation where nobody wins.
  13. Allison, your words suggest to me that you are confusing two different forms of residency documentation. Maybe not, but in the interest of clarity, let me try again. The jubilado visa (aka the pensionado visa) is a different approach to gaining legal residency from the e-cédula, which is, as I understand it, the highest form of documentation for legal residency for non-Panamanian citizens. The jubilado visa has an indefinite expiration date, which means that it can be terminated at any time by government authorities. (I have yet to hear of such a cancellation, but then I am not connected into those channels.) On the other hand, the e-cédula card is issued only after a person is granted permanent residency status. The e-cédula card itself expires every ten years; having the card expire every ten years is NOT the same as having your permanent legal residency expire after ten years. I have been told that e-cédula card expiration is done so as to have a current picture of the documented person. I really don't know what a person's status would be if they did not renew their cédula (and note here that I am generalizing to any cédula, be it a natural born citizen's cédula [which has no letter prefix], or a naturalized citizen's cédula [which has the letter "N" prefix], or an extranjero's cédula [which has the letter "E" prefix]). My knee jerk reaction is that they would be considered a legal citizen or resident as applicable, but without the requisite documentation. Recall that Panama has an identity statute that requires all adults to carry and disclose their ID documents whenever requested by any law enforcement officer. That is what happens somewhat frequently when you are stopped at the checkpoints on the roadways. Maybe there is a fine for not carrying the required identity documents. Regarding the identity document matter, a person with a jubilado (pensionado) visa is supposed to carry and present not only the original of their laminated jubilado card, but also their passport, although I have been led to believe that law enforcement officers generally will accept a legible copy of the appropriate page(s) from a passport. As noted by Hil in his above reply, the jubilado (pensionado) visa card is technically known as a carnet. To be comfortable from a legal documentation perspective while living in Panama as a non-citizen, one should have either a carnet or an e-cédula. Otherwise you are a tourist, with constraints on time in the country. Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and am not giving legal advice here. The best bet would be to check with immigration. (I add this disclaimer before Keith chastises me. )
  14. Transparency and thoroughness add so much credibility. Thank you for your routine, ongoing reporting.