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US Social Security can now make direct deposits in Ecuador.

An Ecuador Living subscriber recently asked about this and I suggested he read “Your Social Security payments while you are outside the US”  which lists 45 countries where the Social Security Administration makes direct deposit.

Ecuador is not listed and I assumed this meant that direct deposits were not possible in Ecuador.

This subscriber had the common sense to ask. He contacted the Federal Benefits Unit at the US Embassy in Quito.

The Embassy’s website says:

The Federal Benefits Unit (FBU) is part of the American Citizens Services section in the Consular section of American Embassies and Consulates. The FBU is responsible for administering programs on behalf of U.S. federal agencies that pay benefits to both American citizens and other country nationals. The FBU assists customers, who are entitled to U.S. Government benefits, in soliciting their benefits and also with post-entitlement issues. In Ecuador, benefit checks are deposit electronically, via direct deposit.

Due to the specialized nature of Federal Benefit programs, the role of the FBU is to answer routine questions and to forward more complex inquiries to the appropriate federal agency. An FBU normally assists persons in interpreting forms and letters sent to them by agencies. The assistance may include review or completion of forms, including change of address requests, and forwarding of these forms to the paying agency. Agencies normally correspond directly with the interested party, but may issue specific instructions on a case to an FBU for assistance in resolution. An FBU may also play a role in program integrity issues, such as verifying whereabouts and existence of beneficiaries.

The FBU officer replied:

Please be advised that the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) currently works with two local banks in Ecuador where your pension can be direct deposited, these banks are Produbanco and Banco de Guayaquil.

If you’re planning to move to Ecuador you should change your address with any SSA office in the U.S. before you leave the country or at the U.S. Embassy in Quito.

Should you need more information you can call the Federal Benefits Unit during the following customer service hours:

Phone inquiries: Tuesdays through Thursdays from 10:00am to 12:00pm
Phone# (02) 398-5000 – ext 5077

Daniel Arroyo
Consular Section – FBU
U.S. Embassy – Quito
Tel: 593-2-398-5077
Fax: 593-2-398-5268
IVG:  644-5077
fbuquito@state.gov

Learn more about Social Security while living abroad at  Your Payments While You Are Outside The United States

Gary

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