Don't know how to get a passport or renew your existing one?

Here's a quick lesson.

We know: How to Get/Renew a U.S. Passport

What's a passport?

A passport is an internationally recognized travel document that verifies the identity and nationality of the bearer. A valid U.S. passport is required to enter and leave most foreign countries.

Who issues passports?

Only the U.S. Department of State has the authority to grant, issue or verify United States passports.

Where do I go to get a passport?

To obtain a passport for the first time, you need to go in person to one of 6,000 passport acceptance facilities located throughout the United States, including many Federal, state and probate courts, post offices, some public libraries and a number of county and municipal offices. There are also 13 regional passport agencies, most of which serve only those who are departing urgently. Appointments are required in such cases.

What do I need to bring with me to the passport office?

You will need:

  • two passport-size photographs of yourself
  • proof of U.S. citizenship (this includes Previous U.S. Passport, a certified birth certificate issued by the city, county or state, a Consular Report of Birth Abroad or Certification of Birth, a Naturalization Certificate or a Certificate of Citizenship)
  • a valid form of photo identification such as a driver's license

Do I need to go in person to the passport office?

You'll need to apply in person if:

  • You are applying for a U.S. passport for the first time;
  • Your expired U.S. passport is not in your possession;
  • Your previous U.S. passport has expired and was issued more than 15 years ago;
  • Your previous U.S. passport was issued when you were under 16; or
  • Your currently valid U.S. passport has been lost or stolen.

Do I need to fill out a passport application?

Yes. You can get one at the passport office or download one from the internet.

How do I renew my passport by mail?

You can renew by mail if: Your most recent passport is available to submit and it is not damaged; you received the passport within the past 15 years; you were over age 16 when it was issued; you still have the same name, or can legally document your name change.

If your passport has been, altered or damaged, you cannot apply by mail. You must apply in person.

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