Legal Issues

Once you leave the U.S., you are no longer under the jurisdiction of the American legal system. If you break a law in a foreign country, it is that country's penal code that determines your fate.

  1. The American Embassy/Consulate DOES NOT take an active role in getting you out of jail if you get into trouble. However, if you are arrested, you should contact the Embassy. (Locate the nearesy Embassy here).
  2. The local U.S. Embassy officials will contact the Program Director, the Center for Global Education Director, your family, or someone else you request. They can also help obtain an attorney. Be sure to follow exactly the advice given you by American consular offi­cials.
  3. Not all Americans arrested internationally knew they were committing a crime. What would be a prank in the U.S., could be treated as serious crimes overseas. Drug possession and use, as well as drinking and driving, are usually treated much more severely outside the U.S. If you are caught, there is nothing anyone can do to help you.
  4. In addition to assistance provided by the U.S. Embassy, students may also contact the 24/7 assistance line provided by your enrollment in CISI. They can provide legal assistance including referral to a local legal advisor, advance bail, and legal fees.