New Passport FAQ

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New US Passport

Why do some applications for new passports get rejected?

Photos that don’t match the guidelines given. It has to have a white colored background, printed on photo paper, the size should be 2×2 and the photo should be clear. In the photo, your eyes must be open and your facial expression should be neutral. You may wear glasses, but they must have clear lenses so they wouldn’t glare, but do not wear uniforms or hats.

Outdated sealed envelopes. When your application is sealed into the official envelope by the Passport Acceptance Agent, you have to submit it to the Passport Agency within 5 business days. Send in your request right away if you’re using a passport expediting company.

Inadequate proof of US citizenship. Your birth certificate shows both of you and your parents’ names, and must be a “long form” certificate. Card styled birth certificates aren’t accepted.“ Your request might be rejected if you submit an old passport as proof of citizenship but only if your appearance has changed significantly. Just in case, you may submit a certified copy of your birth certificate and an old passport at the same time.

If I don’t posses my birth certificate, so where can I claim my certified copy?

You can order a certified copy of your birth certificate online via Vitalchek.com. You can also get your birth certificate in the Vital Statistics Office where you were born.

For applicants who are 16 to 17, will there be special requirements?

Applicants who are 16 or 17, they aren’t legally adults yet so when applying, they should be accompanied by their parents to the Passport Acceptance Agent, to show “parental awareness” that they’re applying for a new passport. They can take a signed letter from a parent saying that the parent approves of the passport request if they want, but they have to bring a photocopy of the parent’s passport or driver’s license.

If this applicant doesn’t have a driver’s license to show as identification, a parent should accompany them to the Passport Acceptance Agent to show their own driver’s license or passport and backup the identity of their child.

I got my US citizenship via naturalization recently, when could I claim a US passport?

As soon as you’ve received your Naturalization Certificate, you can apply for a new US passport already, and you will submit this as proof of your US citizenship.

Will I get back my naturalization certificate or birth certificate?

It will be returned to you along with your new passport.

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