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Thursday, October 1, 2020

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

How can a naturalized citizen obtain a passport if he/she has lost his/her naturalization certificate? This is a test of ability to edit question

A limited passport can be issued to the applicant if the following documentation is provided:

  • A certified letter from the Immigration and Naturalization Service or Court of Naturalization with the applicant's name, date of birth, certificate number and date and place of naturalization.
  • Receipt from the INS for a replacement certificate.
  • A statement from the applicant explaining the loss of the Naturalization Certificate.

Once these documents are provided, the applicant can be issued a limited passport which may be extended to full validity upon presentation of the replacement certificate, the limited passport and a completed DS 5504 “Passport Re-Application Form”, if passport issued less than one year ago. Applicants whose passport is more than one year after the issuance of his/her passport must apply for a new passport using the DS-11 “Application for a U.S. Passport”, or DS-82 “Application for a U.S. Passport by Mail”, as appropriate.

If the military member was born in Korea but presents a California birth certificate and a Certificate of Citizenship, which document should be submitted with the passport application?
If the applicant was born outside of the United States either a Certificate of Citizenship, a Naturalization Certificate, a Consular Report of Birth, or a previously issued passport must be submitted. A few states issue birth certificates to those born outside the United States. The place of birth shown on the birth certificate is the foreign country where the applicant was born. The birth certificate in this case is not acceptable for passport purposes.
I just received a completed passport from DOS and noticed the traveler's name was misspelled on the first line of the passport information page. What do I do?
New Policy Change Effective September 26, 2005, Passports will no longer be amended to change items appearing on the data page of existing passports. DS-19 will no longer be accepted by State Department. The DS 5504 “Passport Re-Application Form”, is required for a change of name and must be accompanied by proper documentation. The DS 5504 “Passport Re-Application Form” is only valid for use if passport issued less than one year ago. Applicants whose passport is more than one year after the issuance of his/her passport must apply for a new passport using the DS-11 “Application for a U.S. Passport”, or DS-82 “Application for a U.S. Passport by Mail”, as appropriate..See New "No Amendment" Policy issued by State Department for more information.)
Who is a minor? Who can sign the application for a minor?
For passport purposes, a minor is an unmarried person under the age of 18. A minor is considered mature enough to execute a passport application and must appear in person. If a child is under the age of 13, a parent, legal guardian, or person in loco parentis whether a U.S. citizen or not, must personally appear and execute the application for the child. Only a parent, legal guardian or person in loco parentis can sign the application for a minor. A person in loco parentis should submit a notarized statement from the parents giving that person permission to execute the application for the child. A legal guardian must submit a certified court order appointing him/her the child's guardian. The DSP-11 passport application dated 12/97 now has two signature blocks. For the applicant under 13, the parent will PRINT the child's name in the "Applicant's Signature" block to the right and SIGN his/her own name in the block to the left. The applicant age 13 or older will SIGN the application in the block to the right. If the date on the passport application form DSP-11 is prior to 12/97, the parent or legal guardian should PRINT the child's name on the line and write, "By mother" or "By father" or "By legal guardian" etc., and SIGN his/her own name.
If a 16/17 year old applicant has his/her own ID, must the parent be present?
Although still legally minors, if the 16 or 17 year old has a driver's license or current dependent's ID, the passport agent may accept the application without the parent or legal guardian present. If the minor does not have his/her own ID, the parent or legal guardian must be present and show acceptable identification.
A minor child's natural father made application for and signed the application for his dependent. When the passport was returned, the step-mother signed the passport for the child. Is that a problem?
The natural father, who signed the application for the child, should sign the passport. Since the step-mother already signed the passport, the natural father should also sign above or below the step-mother's signature. The passport should be signed the same way that the application is signed. The parent or legal guardian should PRINT the child's name on the line and write, "By father" or By legal guardian", etc., and SIGN his or her own name.
What happens to an application that is determined by DOS to have an error? Will the application be returned for correction?
NO. Department of State will suspend the processing of all applications with errors. A letter is then sent out by routine mail from DOS which states what is required for the processing of that application to continue. If DOS does not receive a response within 45 days of the date of this letter, the case will be purged from the system and the traveler must complete a new application.
I have a traveler who needs a Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) endorsement, another who needs an Australian endorsement, another who needs additional visa pages, and one who needs a name change. What is required?
All of these require a DD Form 1056. In addition, a DS 5504 “Passport Re-Application Form”, is required for a change of name and must be accompanied by proper documentation such as a certified copy of a court order showing the name change or a marriage certificate in the case of change of name by marriage. The DS 5504 “Passport Re-Application Form” is only valid for use if passport was issued less than one year ago. Applicants whose name change took place more than one year after the issuance of passport must apply for a new passport using the DS-11 “Application for a U.S. Passport”, or DS-82 “Application for a U.S. Passport by Mail”, as appropriate. An applicant requesting additional visa pages must provide the valid passport, DD1056, and form DS- 4085 “Application for Additional Visa Pages”. If the travel is less than 30 days then a Letter of Expedite is also required.
The state of California does not require documentation to change your name. What do I do with an applicant from California who is using a different name from that on his/her citizenship evidence?
If the applicant does not have a court order to show a legal change of name, then he/she should submit documentation showing that the name has been used at least five years such as: affidavits from at least two persons that have knowledge of his/her using that name for at least five years; tax records from the first year the new name was used; or school records showing exclusive use of the name at that time.

I just received my passport and find that the SOFA endorsement is not in the passport. I am traveling in 2 days. What do I do?

Contact the Special Issuance Agency (SIA) immediately at (202) 485-8200. If there is enough time, send the passport back to SIA with the DD Form 1056 and a completed form DS- 4085 “Application for Additional Visa Pages”, indicating that the SOFA stamp was not inserted in the passport. If there is not enough time to send the passport and accompanying documentation to SIA, then SIA can arrange for the member to go to the nearest regional Passport Agency which will be notified by SIA to stamp the passport for the member.

Can a page be re-attached to a passport?
If a page becomes detached from the passport book the Department of State does not have the means to re-attach it. At this point the passport book is technically and legally considered mutilated and the applicant must apply for a new one as if applying for the first time.

We just received notice that a member, who does not have a passport, must travel this weekend and it is now Friday afternoon. What do I do?

If the member is notified of an impending trip after 4:30 pm eastern time, then he/she must contact the State Department at (202) 647-4000 and ask for the Duty Officer. It is the Duty Officer who will make necessary arrangements to have the passport processed. The Special Issuance Agency in Washington, DC is the only Passport Agency authorized to issue the Official and no-fee passports. The member must arrange to appear in person at the Special Issuance Agency with all required documents.

We have just received a discrepancy letter from Department of State. It will take more than a month before the customer can get the requested information. What should we do?
Notify the Department of State that it will take significantly longer than the 30 days granted by DOS to get the requested information. When the requested documentation has been gathered together, send it back along with the DOS discrepancy letter to the Special Issuance Agency.
What happens when a case is abandoned? Are the DD Forms 1056 and evidence of citizenship retained?
The DOS will retain a case for approximately 30 days after the date that the letter was sent out. If the problem with the applications is not with the citizenship evidence the citizenship evidence is returned to the applicant along with one copy of the DD Form 1056 with the DOS discrepancy letter. When no response is received after 30 days and there has been no request for an extension of that time period then the case is abandoned. If the citizenship evidence was not initially returned to the applicant, it will be returned at this time. If however, the evidence was returned then the applicant will receive no further notice that the case has been abandoned.
For what reasons would a DSP-82, "Application for Passport by Mail" be put into DOS suspense file?
A DSP-82 may be put into suspense for any of the following reasons: the previous passport submitted was issued more than 12 years ago; the applicant was under 16 when the previous passport was issued; the applicant did not sign the application; a completed DD Form 1056 did not accompany the application; the applicant is traveling to a country which does not require a passport.
I am a foster parent in the military. The state Social Services Department placed a child in my care by court order but the custody is retained by the state. The court order is sufficient to have the child entered into DEERS and qualify for the issuance of an ID card. The state has given permission to take the child on the overseas assignment as placement is considered "permanent" even though the child is not adopted. How can I get a passport for the child?
In this case, the State Department recommends that you submit the original documentation from the state granting permission to take the child out of the country, as well as any legal documentation pertaining to this case. After reviewing the available documents the Department of State will make a determination. Should there be anything further needed, the State Department will notify you.
If I must apply for a certified copy of my birth certificate, is that considered a reimbursable expense?
YES, the costs of birth certificates or other acceptable evidence of birth for OCONUS travel are reimbursable including photographs.
Can an official passport be issued to a military member who has no immediate departure or destination but might need it at a moment's notice for deployment?
Official passports are issued based on destination and requirements of the foreign country per the Foreign Clearance Guide. Scenarios change constantly and more and more units are requesting passports for possible mobility missions. Nevertheless, DOS will issue passport only for known missions. The DD Form 1056 must state both departure date and destination. If however, the situation arises where the military member is instructed by his command to get an official passport to be ready for a mission but the DD Form 1056 does not show a departure date or destination, then the passport application must be accompanied by a letter from his/her command requesting the passport with strong justification. Exceptions of this nature must go through the service OPR, the DOD Executive Agent, and then to DOS which has final authority for granting exceptions.

Can an applicant obtain a copy of the approved passport application?

YES. The applicant must request this in writing stating name, date and place of birth, and an approximate date of passport issuance. This should be sent to:

U.S. Department of State                                             

Law Enforcement Liaison Division (CA/PPT/S/L/LE)      

44132 Mercure Cir

PO Box 1227

Sterling, VA 20166-1227

 

 

I am currently on active duty and will retire very soon. My spouse is also active duty and has an assignment overseas. What is the earliest date that I can apply for a no-fee dependent passport?
You can apply for a no-fee dependent passport when you receive your retirement orders and when your wife receives her travel orders. The DD Form 1056 which indicates your name as a dependent of your spouse will be submitted along with the passport application to obtain a no-fee dependent passport.
When is a passport considered altered or mutilated?
A passport is considered altered or mutilated when pages, photograph, or both are removed or unofficial changes in the descriptive data page were made. The alteration of a U.S. passport is a serious matter and unofficial entries can render the passport invalid.
Can I apply for a tourist and no-fee passport at the same time with a military passport agent?
NO, A military passport agent is authorized to accept your application for the no-fee passport ONLY. The Memorandum of Agreement between DOD and DOS states, "DOD will accept no-fee passport applications at designated installations... Authorization to accept, in very unusual circumstances, fee passport applications will be requested by DOD as needs are identified". You must go to a postal facility that accepts applications to apply for the tourist passport. It is possible to submit for both applications for both the tourist and no-fee passports at a post office. You may also re-apply for the tourist passport by mail using form DSP-82, if you have a previous passport issued with the last 12 years.
While assigned overseas as an active duty military member, I was issued a blue no-fee passport by the Embassy for official travel. I have since returned to the U.S. and learned that I cannot use this passport for an upcoming TDY but must apply for an official passport. The passport is still valid and bears an official stamp. Why can I not use it? Why do Embassies issue this type of passport?
This passport would have been issued by the Embassy or Consulate in a case where the military member is already overseas in a country that does not require the official passport and is then assigned or must travel to a country that requires an official passport. The Special Issuance Agency in Washington, DC is the only passport agency that can issue the maroon official passport. In the case of a military member abroad who applies at an Embassy or Consulate with an imminent departure date, there may not be enough time to forward that application to the Special Issuance Agency for issuance of the official book. In the case of an emergency departure date, the Embassy or Consulate has the authority to issue a no-fee blue book with an endorsement and limitation usually for the duration of the assignment. In the event that the military member returns to the U.S. and is preparing for an upcoming TDY to a country that requires the official passport then he/she must re-apply for the official passport.
In what case would the Special Issuance Agency retain citizenship evidence submitted with the passport application?
The Special Issuance Agency returns all citizenship evidence submitted with the passport application. However, if a birth certificate, naturalization certificate or previous passport has been altered or mutilated in any way, then the evidence will be retained.
I have a problem enforcing the requirement that government employees travel overseas with official passports when on official business. Many of my fellow Districts say that official passports are merely options and if the traveler has a tourist passport - that's good enough. How do I handle this situation?
When traveling abroad on official government business, the traveler should carry the official passport. Use of the official passport is not "merely an option". Volume 22 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) provides in part 51.3(b) that "an official passport is issued to an employee of the U.S. Government proceeding abroad in the discharge of official duties". The purpose of an official passport is to provide protection for the traveler when abroad on official government business. The regular tourist passport cannot provide the same protection or privileges.
When submitting a request to amend a passport for a change of name due to marriage, is a photocopy of the marriage certificate acceptable?
Yes. Only in the case of change of name by marriage is a photocopy of the marriage certificate acceptable. In all other cases of name change the original or certificated copy of the court order is required. In addition to the marriage certificate and a DD Form 1056 must be submitted. A DS 5504 “Passport Re-Application Form”, is required for a change of name if passport issued less than one year ago. Applicants whose name change took place more than one year after the issuance of his/her passport must apply for a new passport using the DS-11 “Application for a U.S. Passport”, or DS-82 “Application for a U.S. Passport by Mail”, as appropriate.
Often documents of citizenship are returned with the suspense letter and sometimes not. What is DOS policy for returning or retaining documents when the case is put into suspense?
A suspense letter is sent when there is a discrepancy with the DSP-11, DD Form 1056, or a problem with citizenship evidence, photos, etc. If the evidence of citizenship is unacceptable for some reason, it is retained by DOS until the correct documentation is received. If however, the citizenship evidence is acceptable but there is another problem with the application, then the citizenship evidence is returned with the discrepancy letter. In the case where DOS sends back the citizenship evidence with the letter, RETURN IT TO THE APPLICANT. DO NOT SEND IT BACK AGAIN TO DOS with the documentation requested in the letter. You should return only the letter sent to you and the requested information.
When members of a military unit are participating in a unit sponsored athletic events overseas, can official passports be issued?
Members of a unit participating in athletic events overseas are NOT entitled to official passport but would be eligible to receive the no-fee regular passports limited to the duration of the event plus one month. Block 17 of the DD Form 1056 must indicate type of event and dates of participation.

What should I do when, upon inquiring into the status of a passport, I am told that it was mailed over 10 days ago?

If the passport was mail but not received by the agent please follow the steps below:

1) Agent should contact DET to verify the contents of the package

2) DET will notify FedEx of the incident

3) If the passport was issued with-in 90 days

                a. Agent should complete and submit to SIA the DS form 86, Statement of Non-Receipt of a Passport, along with the FedEx tracking number and delivery information for the missing package.

                b. SIA will process to reissue the passport

4) If the passport was issued over 90 days

                a. Agent should complete and submit to SIA new passport applications (DS-11, Application for a U.S. passport, with a DS-64, Lost or Stolen Passport), and a statement regarding the circumstances from the acceptance agent.

                b. SIA will process to issue the passport

 

If the passport was mailed and the agent received a damaged FedEx package with missing contents please follow the steps below:

1) Agent should contact DET to verify the contents of the package

2) DET will notify FedEx of the incident 3)Agent should retain all damaged packaging in order for DET to file a claim with FedEx

                a. Agent/Applicant cannot file a monetary claim against FedEx for missing documents (Birth Certificates, Tourist Passports, Naturalization Papers, CRBAs)

                b. Applicant may seek reimbursement of missing documents by including them on their travel voucher

4) DET will consult with FedEx to determine the best course of action to recover the package and monitor progress until claim/incident is closed.

5) If passport was issued with-in 90 days

                a. Agent should complete and submit to SIA the DS form 86, Statement of Non-Receipt of a Passport, along with the FedEx tracking number and delivery information for the missing package.

                b. SIA will process to reissue the passport

6) If the passport was issued over 90 days

                a. Agent should complete and submit to SIA new passport applications (DS-11, Application for a U.S. passport, with a DS-64, Lost or Stolen Passport), and a statement regarding the circumstances from the acceptance agent.

                b. SIA will process to issue the passport"

I am a reserve component passport agent and a unit is requesting support during the next SPR. How can I support this request?

First, check the FCG to ensure the countries require a passport. If the travel does require a passport, you must get prior written approval from the State Department. Using the commands letterhead outline your intent and address the following:

Unit Supporting

Number of expected passports

Location traveling to

Dates covered

Mission name

Name of agent(s) traveling

If the location where the passports are going to be executed is not a DoD Passport Acceptance Facility then the following must be added:

Facility is not a designated passport acceptance facility but has all the required personal identifiable information security measures in place. Passport acceptance agents will follow all internal controls outlined in the Federal and Military Passport Agent’s Reference Guide (FM PARG), including but not limited to storing all applications under lock and key when not actively being worked on and identifying all applications accepted at the offsite location correctly on a transmittal submitted to SIA.

As the offsite location is not a facility the following will apply:

  1. The passport agent will leave the facility number blank.
  2. The passport agent will note his/her agent Id number on DS11s but not his/her home facility number.
  3. The passport agent will write "approved off site (dates approved, unit and location" on the facility name and location line if each DS11. 
  4. The passport agent will mail all passport applications accepted offsite 1) in accordance to the mailing requirements in the FM PARG and 2) directly to the Special Issuance Agency from the offsite location. 
  5. The passport agent will follow all transmittal requirements outlined in the FM PARG and complete the transmittal with the offsite location’s information (not the home facility). Photocopies of the transmittals will be electronically sent or securely transported on the agent’s person to the home facility and maintained by the home facility in accordance with FM PARG requirements.

 The unit must have done the initial mission analysis to specifically identify many personnel are in need of official passports.

Send the unit mission order and memo to Directorate of Executive Travel, Office of the Administration Assistant, Chief, Customer Service Operations.

Once you get approval, you must add a copy of the SIA memo with every transmittal. In addition, a photocopy must be included with every DS-11 application, signifying that the Agent Seal Requirement has been waived.

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Office of the Administrative Assistant
to the Secretary of the Army
U.S. Army Headquarters Services
Directorate of Executive Travel
9301 Chapek Road
Fort Belvoir, VA 22060
E-Mail Passport Visa Customer Service
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