Passports Are Tough To Get These Days

Passport and citizenship evidence documents delayed says US Department of State
(Vax Before Travel)

Because of measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 disease, the US Department of State announced ‘we are only able to offer in-person service at passport agencies or centers for customers with a qualified life-or-death emergency and who need a passport for immediate international travel within 72 hours.’

Updated on April 3, 2020, the State Department’s online statement says ‘While you can still apply in person for a U.S. passport at some acceptance facilities and renew through the mail, you should expect significant delays receiving your passport and your citizenship evidence documents.’

And, please consider waiting to apply until we resume normal operations. We suspended expedited service on March 19, 2020, and are not offering this service to any applicants.

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If you applied and requested expedited service on or before March 19, 2020, the State Department said they made every effort to meet commitments of 2-3 weeks door-to-door service. 

However, due to limited staff, you may experience additional delays.

And, if you applied and requested routine service on or before March 19, 2020, you should expect significant delays receiving your passport and your citizenship evidence documents.

If you received a letter from us requesting additional documents or information to process your passport application, you may mail your response to the address in the letter. 

But, expect significant processing delays.

What Qualifies as a Life-or-Death Emergency?

Life-or-death emergencies are serious illnesses, injuries, or deaths in your immediate family (e.g., parent, child, spouse, sibling, aunt, uncle, etc.) that require you to travel outside the United States within 72 hours (3 days). 

You must provide:

  • A passport application with supporting documents
  • Proof of the life-or-death emergency such as a death certificate, a statement from a mortuary, or a signed letter from a hospital or medical professional. Documents must be translated or in English.
  • Proof of international travel (e.g. reservation, ticket, itinerary) specific to the emergency

To make an appointment at a passport agency or center for a life-or-death emergency, you must call our National Passport Information Center at 1-877-487-2778 (1-888-874-7793 TDD/TTY)

Moreover, many passport application acceptance facilities, which include libraries, clerks of court, and post offices, are not accepting U.S. passport applications at this time. 

As of March 25, 2020, post offices that are still accepting applications are requiring customers to make an online appointment to apply in person for a U.S. passport. 

If you need to apply in person for your U.S. passport, please contact the facility directly to confirm the status of its operations.

Passport agencies located in Atlanta, Connecticut, New York, and San Juan are closed to the public until further notice.

Coronavirus travel advisory news published by Vax-Before-Travel.