Who needs a U.S. Passport?

All U.S. citizens, including infants, departing from and entering the United States from outside the U.S. Information regarding Passport and Visa requirements of foreign countries, and their respective fees, may be found on

I have life or death emergency overseas and need my passport. What should I do?

Life or death emergencies involve serious illness, injury, or death in your immediate family that requires you to travel within 24 to 48 hours to a country that requires a passport. Customers must appear in person at the Miami-Dade Regional Passport Agency for emergency service and documentation of the emergency may be requested. Please call the National Passport Information Center at (877) 487-2778 to schedule an appointment with the nearest Regional Passport Agency (Miami-Dade). If an appointment that will meet your needs is not available, and you are calling between the hours of 8:00 am and 10:00 pm Eastern Time (excluding Federal Holidays), please just stay on the line and follow the instructions to speak to a Customer Service Representative (CSR). The CSR will give you guidance on what to do. If you are calling on a federal holiday or during hours the CSRs are not available, please call (202) 647-4000 and explain your situation to the operator.

Help! My passport has already been issued and mailed to me, but I have not received it yet. What do I do?

Contact the National Passport Information Center at (877) 487-2778. A Customer Service Representative will confirm the date your passport was mailed to you, the address to which it was mailed, and if necessary, help you to report the non-receipt of your passport. You have 90 days from the date your passport was issued to report that you have not yet received it in the mail. If you do not report the non-receipt of your passport within 90 days of the issue date, you will be required to re-apply and submit the full passport fee.

Help! My U.S. Passport (valid or expired) is misplaced, lost or has been stolen! What do I have to do?

You may either contact the U.S. Dept of State immediately at (877) 487-2778 – (TYY 888-874-7793), operators are available 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Eastern Time, or you may complete Form DS-64 and mail it directly to address as instructed on the form. If you are submitting for a new passport, you may attach the Form DS-64 to your DS-11 at time of application. Important Note: Passports reported as lost or stolen by telephone or by submitting Form DS-64 are invalidated and can no longer be used for travel. For more information about Lost or Stolen Passports, please CLICK HERE. If you are traveling within the next 14 days, you may make an appointment with the Miami-Dade Regional Passport Agency by calling 305-539-3600. For more information, please visit or call (877) 487-2778.

My minor child(ren), age 15 years old or younger need their passport. Do they need to come with me in order apply?

Yes. Each applicant, regardless of age, must appear when making an application for a U.S. Passport. Additionally, BOTH natural parents must be present with their own valid government issued photo ID as well. If for some reason one parent is unable to appear with the child(ren), the absent parent may execute and have notarized a DS-3053 – Statement of Consent or Special Circumstances. The completed form must be less than 3 months old, and a legible photocopy of the absent parent’s valid government issued photo ID (front and back) is required to be attached to the DS-3053.

My name has changed (through divorce, marriage or court order), and the last name shown on my valid government issued photo ID is different than my new name. What do I need to provide so my new name will appear on my new passport?

You are encouraged to have your name updated on your valid government issued photo ID prior to making application for your U.S. Passport. If time does not permit, you may apply for your U.S. Passport using your existing ID with your old name, and providing a court certified copy of your Final Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage wherein it states your name change (restored to maiden name, etc), a court certified copy of your recorded marriage license, or a court certified copy of the order of name change along with your application.

What is the difference between a passport book and a passport card?

A passport book is designed for travel by any means (air, land or sea) to any destination.

A passport card is wallet sized and more portable, and can be used at land-border crossings returning from Canada or Mexico, and certain sea ports-of-entry within the Western Hemisphere, such as from Bermuda or the Caribbean. The card is less expensive than the book; however, the card cannot be used for world-wide international travel or travel by air anywhere. The card provides a less expensive, smaller, and more convenient alternative to the passport book for those who travel frequently to these land bordering countries or by sea to specific approved countries. Both documents have the same valid life range, and both documents establish the citizenship and identity of the bearer. To learn more about the U.S. Passport Card from the Department of State, please CLICK HERE.

Do I have to put my Social Security Number on my Application for U.S. Passport?

Yes. A social security number is required for all passport applications regardless of the age of the applicant. Section 6039E of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 6039E) requires you to provide your social security number when you apply for a U.S. Passport or for the renewal of a U.S. Passport. If you fail to provide your SSN, you may be subject to a $500 penalty enforced by the IRS. This office, in our capacity of acceptance agency, verifies the completeness of your application which is then forwarded to the U.S. Department of State. This office does not make or keep a record of any applicant’s social security number.

Can I use a photocopy of my Birth Certificate or Naturalization Certificate instead of submitting my original documents?

No. You must surrender your certified birth certificate or your Original Naturalization Certificate. These documents will be returned to you from the Dept. of State after processing. Please note: Our office is not permitted to make photocopies of these documents for you. If you wish to keep a copy for your records before surrendering them for the application process, please be sure to make your photocopies before arriving to our office.

Can I get a U.S. Passport if a birth record is not available?

Yes. This requires additional documentation. You should call the U.S. Dept of State’s Passport office at (877) 487-2778 or visit for more information.

For how long is a U.S. Passport valid?

A passport is valid for ten (10) years if you are 16 years or older when you apply, or for five (5) years if you are 15 years or younger when you apply.

When should I apply for my U.S. Passport?

Ideally, you should apply for your passport several months before you plan to travel. In most cases, you will need to apply for a Visa to gain entrance to most countries from the embassy of the country to which you plan to travel, and most often they will require your passport to accompany your application for Visa. Additional vaccinations and other precautionary health requirements may also be necessary prior to entering a foreign country. Please consult your travel agent for more information. CLICK HERE to view country specific travel information provided by the U.S. Dept of State.

Will I need a Visa to enter a foreign country?

You may need a Visa to gain entrance to most countries. CLICK HERE to view country specific Visa requirements. In many cases, there is an application fee for a Visa, and requests for a Visa may take several months to process depending on your destination, so plan accordingly. Please consult your travel agent for more information.

I’m renewing my passport. Will I get my old one back?

Yes. Your old passport will be returned to you as “Cancelled”. It may be sent in the same mailing or in a separate mailing.

I don’t have a certified copy of my birth certificate. How do I obtain one?

You would order a certified copy from the Health Department in the state you were born in. Please refer to the attached chart for specific information by state

To access the vital records office in the State or Territory where your birth occurred. Click Here for Birth Certificate Contact List (PDF)