A United States passport opens doors to international travel. Without a passport, entering another country becomes a virtual impossibility. A passport serves as government identification, which can prove helpful in many instances. The California DMV, for example, may accept a passport as I.D. when seeking a replacement driver’s license. Only U.S. citizens may apply for a U.S. passport, so applications for the document do require proof of said citizenship.
Proof of U.S. citizenship falls under two delineations: primary and secondary. Primary evidence includes expired passports, certified and detailed birth certificates, a naturalization certificate and more. Applicants do need to make sure the submitted proof is acceptable. A short-form birth certificate won’t work. The submitted birth certificate must include extensive information as required by the State Department.
Secondary evidence isn’t as definitive as primary evidence, but such evidence could provide sufficient credibility for the application’s acceptance. A delayed birth certificate, letter of no record or even baptism certificates and school records might work. Submitting several items of secondary evidence may help, but it might also be possible that the passport office could request additional information.
Improperly submitted or incomplete application packages could lead to delays. Persons needing their passport promptly might find the delays troubling, but the State Department will not accept applications lacking sufficient evidence. Therefore, applicants may benefit from carefully reviewing their submissions to make sure nothing is missing. Photocopies and original documents should be legible, too. The review might further benefit from proofreading the application for errors while also making sure documentary evidence fits the necessary criteria.
Requesting assistance from an immigration attorney could prove helpful. The attorney might assist a client with putting together an application package.