Post # 1
Sorry bees, just wanted to vent. I feel like once you fall through the cracks of a government system, you are screwed.
Our honeymoon in the Carribean is exactly 3 months away and my FI needs to get a passport. I have been bothering him for months and he finally decided to go today. It only takes about 4-6 weeks to process/get back, so it should have been fine timeline wise.
Well…it turns out that his Certificate of Birth Abroad is no longer a valid acceptable form of identification for passport applications. What?!?!? He was born in Germany (his parents were military) and they issued a Form FS-545, which happens to not have his parents names on it. But that is all they issued at the time.
Turns out that in 2010, the government decided to require that parent’s names are on birth certificates. Ok, but the government decided NOT to print parent’s names on foreign birth certificates before, so now we have a problem.
We have tried calling at least 5 different numbers and could only get a hold of one live person, who basically read the words on the website to us…NOT HELPFUL.
So, we think we figured out how to get a new copy of Consular Certificate of Birth which will work as proof of identity for a passport. It costs $50 and will take a few weeks to arrive. We have to write a letter requesting it and hope that 1) they accept it and 2) it doesn’t take forever to get here. Because then we have to submit for his passport application.
Ugh, I am just so annoyed. If we have to, we will pay the extra $60 expedite fee. Then we would be out another $110 plus the $160 fee for a passport. This is just so ridiculous!
Sorry, vent over.
Post # 3
Did you speak with more than one person at the passport office? Because I see no reason why that certificate should not be accepted, those forms are issued by the Dept of State, right?. Maybe you got a not-so-smart employee?
Just because they have replaced that cert with a different version shouldn’t invalidate it.
Post # 4
i’m in Canada so things are a little different but I went through something similar myself (although not as bad). My birth certificate was issued laminated, has always been that way. About a month after mine was issued (way back in 1983) they stopped laminating them and started printing ‘void if laminated’ of all birth certificates. Every time i need to provide it as proof of identification I always have to fight with people about it, they have to get out their little books and verify the dates that yes it’s valid (doesn’t help that I now live in a difference province than the one it was issued in).
Post # 5
I just spent three hours! at the post office yesterday for my passport. I’m hopefully ill have no bumps though. Such a pain! 🙂
Post # 6
@bmo88: i feel you! FI went in with his ORIGINAL birth certificate mind you. The lady told usthat his was not valid and would not be accepted for his passport. We asked why..she said and I quote “it doesnt look like the Texas birth certificates.” Well no shit ma’am, he was not born in Texas he was born in Illinois. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
Post # 7
@bmo88: I just looked at the US passport application and the citizenship documentation requirements. From what I can tell, if you are born IN the U.S., your birth certificate MUST have the names of your parents. But there is no similar wording for certificates of people born OUTSIDE the U.S. I really think (hope) the person you spoke with might be confused.
top of page 2. http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/79955.pdf
Post # 8
@kimm99: Good catch! We are going to go back to the post office tomorrow and point this out to them. What I cannot tell is if the “and” that is underlined applies if you have the Certification of Birth form F-545. That would mean he needs to submit his parent’s history of residence. Can you tell from the wording if the last section of the line applies?
Post # 9
I had a similar issue when I got my own passport. I was born outside the country (came earlier than expected) and I only had a birth certificate from that country. That birth certificate had on it that my parents were Americans, and at the time it had always worked as proof of citizenship for my own travels in and out of the country.
However, when I applied for a passport it was not good enough. I also did not have a consular report of birth (either they didn’t do those at that time or my parents didn’t know enough to do that) or anything like that.
For the passport, I had to pay an extra $100 and also had to mail in each of my parents’ original birth certificates which showed that they were born in the US. This was apparently proof that I was a citizen (because they were) and the extra money was to establish my citizenship or something like that.
Since time was short for me, I also wrote to my senators and my congressman and that seemed to expidite it for me a bit as I think one or two of them checked into it for me.
Post # 10
i had crazy issues with getting a passport back in 2007.
i had a tracking number that it arrived at the philly office for processing but philly had no record of it.
because there was such a backlog of people wanting passports at that time, the only thing i could do was 14 days before my trip, go to the philly office, stand in line and hoped i got in before they closed.
luckily, i was refunded all the fees i paid previous to going to philly office and only had to pay the new fees.
sadly, my childhood passport that i mailed it to renew was never found. i might be one of those news stories in 50 years about a passport found behind a desk.
Post # 11
I’m sorry for your trouble.
My FI got ROBBED TWO days before our trip to Jamacia. The crooks took his passport, we were both DEVASTATED. I put on my thinking cap and got to work. Turns out, you can go to your closet regional office for “emergency passports”. We drove to D.C. the next morining, showed the office the police report and our documents proving we were traveling out of the country. It cost about $200 but we got the passport the same day. It was extremely stressful, but we had an amazing time on our trip.
Good luck hope everything turns out okay.
Post # 12
@Jennlee: +1 on congressmen. We had different issues entirely (visa related), but getting in touch with a congressman seemed to help (that or everything fell inot place coincidentally in the 2 weeks after!)