ContractsCounsel Logo
Home Types of Contracts US Passport Application

US Passport Application: What You Need and How to Apply

Jump to Section

ContractsCounsel has assisted 64 clients with us passport applications and maintains a network of 17 immigration lawyers available daily.

What Is A US Passport Application?

A US Passport Application is a government form provided by the State Department that must be filled out and submitted by a US citizen to obtain a United States passport.

Along with a completed and signed application, an applicant must also submit proof of their United States citizenship, proof of identity, a recent color photograph, and the appropriate fees.

A US Passport is proof that an individual is a US citizen and it allows the holder to travel in and out of the United States freely.

To see what a US Passport Application looks like, click here.

How To Apply For A US Passport

The application process for a US passport can be tedious, but staying organized will make the task easier. Follow these steps to apply for a US passport:

Step 1: Gather the required documents. It is important to start the application process for a US Passport several months before your planned travel. Be sure to check current processing times on the State Department’s website so you receive your passport in time for your planned travel. You will need the following documents to submit your passport application:

  • Completed application form: Form DS-11
  • Proof of identity: This can be any legal document that contains both your signature and photograph like a driver’s license, Certificate of Naturalization, Certificate of Citizenship, or military ID. For more options, there is a list of accepted identification documents on the DS-11 application form.
  • Proof of US Citizenship: If you were born in the United States, a previous passport or a certified birth certificate can be used as proof of citizenship. If you do not have a birth certificate, you must submit a registrar’s notice with one of the following supporting documents:
    • A hospital birth record
    • An early baptismal or circumcision certificate
    • Early census, school, medical, or family bible records
    • Insurance documents or a published birth announcement
    • Notarized affidavits like a DS-10 Birth Affidavit

If you were not born in the United States, you will have to submit a certificate of naturalization, certificate of citizenship, or a consular report of birth abroad.

For more information about what forms of proof of citizenship are acceptable, you can refer to the directions page on the application.

Step 2: Prepare your application package. You will want to gather your application, proof of identity and citizenship, photograph, fees, and all other required materials and have them organized. Refer to this checklist to ensure you have everything you need.

  • Completed UNSIGNED DS-11 application form (you will sign when you submit the application in person)
  • Passport photo
  • Original and photo copies of your proof of identity documents and proof of citizenship documents
  • Required fees

Step 3: Schedule an appointment at a passport acceptance facility. You can log on to the US Department of State website to find a passport acceptance facility near you. If you are applying for a passport for the first time, you must apply in person.

Not all acceptance centers require appointments but it is a good idea to call ahead and find out. Some examples of acceptance centers you may find in your area are the Post Office or the Clerk of Court.

Step 4: Submit your application. When you go to your scheduled appointment, you will sign your application and submit it with all required documents and fees.

For more information about applying for a US Passport in person, click here.

Meet some lawyers on our platform

Sara S.

148 projects on CC
CC verified
View Profile

Sarah S.

35 projects on CC
CC verified
View Profile

Daehoon P.

203 projects on CC
CC verified
View Profile

Forest H.

244 projects on CC
CC verified
View Profile

How To Apply For A US Passport Online

First-time applicants cannot apply for a US Passport online. If you are applying for a US Passport for the first time, you must apply in person at a designated passport acceptance facility.

If you are renewing your passport, adults can mail the required documents to avoid an in person appointment as long as you meet certain criteria. Check the State Department’s website for the latest information to determine whether you need an in-person appointment or can renew your passport online or by mail.

Even though you cannot apply for a passport online, you can fill out the required forms, locate an acceptance center, check the application status, report a lost or stolen passport, schedule an appointment at a passport agency, and find the answers to many of your questions all online at the Department of State website.

US Passport Renewal

If you currently have a US Passport and need to renew it either because it is set to expire or you have changed your name, you can do so by mail. To figure out if you are eligible for renewal, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Have your passport in your possession to submit with your renewal application
  • Passport must be undamaged
  • Passport must have been issued when you were 16 years or older
  • Passport must have been issued within the last 15 years
  • Passport was issued in your current name or you can document your name change

If you fit all these criteria, you can renew your passport by mail. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Fill out the US Passport Renewal Application, form DS-82. You will select whether you are renewing a passport book, card, or both.

Step 2: Print the completed form and sign and date it. Be sure to print the form single sided as the Department of State will not accept double sided forms.

Step 3: If you are renewing your passport because your name has changed, you will need to submit a certified copy of the legal name change document. This can be a marriage certificate, divorce decree, or a court ordered name change document.

Step 4: Obtain a passport photo. You will need to submit one passport photo with your renewal application. There are strict guidelines that the photo needs to meet so it is best to have the photo taken professionally.

Step 5: Write a check or money order for the appropriate fees. The check should be made out to the “US Department of State”. They do not accept cash and there is not currently a way to pay this fee online. Credit card payments can be made through the DS-11 form if you are applying in-person.

Step 6: Submit your application, all supporting documents, photograph, check, and your current US Passport by mail. Check the Department of State website for the correct mailing address.

Follow this link for access to all of the passport application forms from the Department of State.

ContractsCounsel US Passport Application Image

Image via Pexels by Spencer

How Long Does The US Passport Application Process Take?

A standard application can take between six to eight weeks to process. It is always suggested that you submit your application at least ten weeks before you plan to travel to provide a buffer for any delays.

When submitting your application, you can opt for expedited processing which costs an additional fee. This will speed up the time of your passport processing time to two to three weeks.

If you really need your passport in hurry, you can seek the services of third party passport expeditor companies. These companies will help you through the application process to ensure you have all the right documents and photos then send a representative to the passport agency for you. Although convenient, these services can be very expensive.

Checking US Passport Application Status

You can track the status of your application online at the Department of State website. It may take up to six weeks for the status to show as “processing”. If the status shows “unavailable”, it means that your application packet is still in transit to the Department of State.

To check your application status, you will need to following information:

  • Last name
  • Date of birth
  • Last four digits of social security number

Click here to check the status of your passport application right now!

US Passport Application Fees

You will be required to pay a fee to either apply for a new passport or renew your old passport. Fees must be paid by check or money order made out to the “US Department of State”.

Here is a list of the current US Passport Application Fees:

  • Passport Book: $110.00
  • Passport Card: $30.00
  • Passport Book and Card: $140.00
  • Passport for children under 15: $80.00
  • Passport Card for children under 15: $15.00
  • Passport Book and Card for children under 15: $95.00
  • Execution Fee: $35.00
  • Expedited Service: $60.00
  • 1-2 Day Delivery: $17.56
  • File Search: $150.00

Get Help With A US Passport Application

Do you have any questions about a US Passport Application and want to speak to an expert? Post a project today on ContractsCounsel and receive bids from immigration lawyers who specialize in US Passport Applications.


ContractsCounsel is not a law firm, and this post should not be considered and does not contain legal advice. To ensure the information and advice in this post are correct, sufficient, and appropriate for your situation, please consult a licensed attorney. Also, using or accessing ContractsCounsel's site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and ContractsCounsel.


How ContractsCounsel Works
Hiring a lawyer on ContractsCounsel is easy, transparent and affordable.
1. Post a Free Project
Complete our 4-step process to provide info on what you need done.
2. Get Bids to Review
Receive flat-fee bids from lawyers in our marketplace to compare.
3. Start Your Project
Securely pay to start working with the lawyer you select.

Meet some of our US Passport Application Lawyers

Max N. on ContractsCounsel
View Max
5.0 (6)
Member Since:
August 17, 2022

Max N.

Attorney
Free Consultation
Oklahoma
5 Yrs Experience
Licensed in OK
Oklahoma City University School of Law

Oklahoma attorney focused on real estate transactions, quiet title lawsuits, estate planning, probates, business formations, and all contract matters.

Jane C. on ContractsCounsel
View Jane
4.9 (87)
Member Since:
October 9, 2020

Jane C.

Attorney
Free Consultation
New York
19 Yrs Experience
Licensed in CT, DC, NY
Pace University School of Law

Skilled in the details of complex corporate transactions, I have 15 years experience working with entrepreneurs and businesses to plan and grow for the future. Clients trust me because of the practical guided advice I provide. No deal is too small or complex for me to handle.

Jennifer W. on ContractsCounsel
View Jennifer
5.0 (4)
Member Since:
May 24, 2023

Jennifer W.

Immigration Attorney
Free Consultation
New York
10 Yrs Experience
Licensed in CT
Quinnipiac University Law School

I am an Immigration attorney specializing in business, corporate, and family immigration. I have served the immigrant (EB1A/B/C, NIWs, and PERM) and non immigrant (H, L, O, TN, E) needs for individuals, families, start-up companies, and some of the largest financial and commercial companies. I have experience with adjustment of status and consular processing. Please let me know how I can serve your immigration needs.

Garrett M. on ContractsCounsel
View Garrett
5.0 (7)
Member Since:
August 30, 2021

Garrett M.

Attorney
Free Consultation
Dexter, MO
8 Yrs Experience
Licensed in TX
University of Texas

I am a solo-practitioner with a practice mostly consisting of serving as a fractional general counsel to start ups and growth stage companies. With a practical business background, I aim to bring real-world, economically driven solutions to my client's legal problems and pride myself on efficient yet effective work.

Billy Joe M. on ContractsCounsel
View Billy Joe
5.0 (3)
Member Since:
October 26, 2021

Billy Joe M.

Partner Attorney
Free Consultation
Chicago, IL
15 Yrs Experience
Licensed in IL
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

I graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2006 with a degree in Political Science, Finance, and Economics. I stayed around Champaign for law school and graduated in 2009. I then worked at a big law firm in downtown Chicago. It was boring, so I quit in early 2011. I thought that I could not be happy practicing law - I was wrong. After I quit the traditional law firm life, I began representing my own clients. I realize now that I love helping normal people, small business owners, and non-profits address a variety of legal issues. I hope to hear from you.

James David W. on ContractsCounsel
View James David
Member Since:
September 3, 2021

James David W.

Partner
Free Consultation
Raleigh, NC
8 Yrs Experience
Licensed in DC, NC
Harvard Law School

I graduated from Harvard Law School and worked first for a federal judge and then a leading DC firm before starting a firm with a law school classmate. My practice focuses on company formations, early-stage investments, and mergers & acquisitions.

Anna K. on ContractsCounsel
View Anna
Member Since:
November 12, 2021

Anna K.

Manager
Free Consultation
Miami, Florida
26 Yrs Experience
Licensed in FL
University of Miami

Anna is an experienced attorney, with over twenty years of experience. With no geographical boundaries confining her practice, Anna works on corporate, healthcare and real estate transactions. Anna brings extensive big firm experience, garnered as an associate in the Miami office of the world's largest law firm, Baker and McKenzie, and the Miami office of the international law firm Kilpatrick Townsend. Her areas of expertise include: mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, private placements, healthcare transactions, corporate finance, commercial real estate transaction and acting as a general corporate counsel. Anna is certified to practice law in Florida and was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1998. Anna is also a Certified Public Accountant. She passed May 1995 CPA Exam on the first sitting. She is fluent in Russian (native).

Find the best lawyer for your project

Browse Lawyers Now

Quick, user friendly and one of the better ways I've come across to get ahold of lawyers willing to take new clients.

View Trustpilot Review

How It Works

Post Your Project

Get Free Bids to Compare

Hire Your Lawyer

Immigration lawyers by top cities
See All Immigration Lawyers
US Passport Application lawyers by city
See All US Passport Application Lawyers

ContractsCounsel User

Recent Project:
Passport application
Location: North Carolina
Turnaround: Less than a week
Service: Prepare & File
Doc Type: US Passport Application
Number of Bids: 2
Bid Range: $250 - $495

ContractsCounsel User

Recent Project:
Help with filing for US Passport
Location: Michigan
Turnaround: Over a week
Service: Prepare & File
Doc Type: US Passport Application
Number of Bids: 2
Bid Range: $90 - $800

How It Works

Post Your Project

Get Free Bids to Compare

Hire Your Lawyer

Want to speak to someone?

Get in touch below and we will schedule a time to connect!

Request a call

Find lawyers and attorneys by city