Arrears of Child Support leaves me without a passport to travel.

Question & AnswerQuestion:  Good Day, on 3/9/2013 I applied for a passport. I applied for my passport using the expedited passport service. On 3/12/2013, I was notified via mail that I was ineligible to obtain a passport. Because, I owed arrears of child support.

I am pretty sure that this whole mishap is a mistake. I notified the child support agency for the state which I live in. They said they do not have any record of me. Being a single father with legal custody of my daughter encourages me to believe that there has been a mistake somewhere along the line.

I will be traveling to Jamaica on April 20, 2013. Hopefully, someone to contact me regarding this matter. I cannot cancel my trip at this point and would really appreciate if someone can reach out to me to better my knowledge of my current situation.


Answer:  We are sorry to hear about these unfortunate circumstances you are dealing with. The legalities of obtaining a passport can be intricate at times. We advise you to contact the National Passport Information Center. The phone number to this center is 1-877-487-2778. Call and explain your situation to one of the representatives in detail. Ask the representative to double check your application to make sure that the social security numbers match.

If the social security number does match, you can set up a payment schedule for arrears of child support with the state agency.  They will collect the payment of arrears. Any passport applicant that owes more than $2500 in arrears of child support must make a payment agreement with the state agency. The agency will then relay the information to the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The HHS will then relay the information to the State Department.

However, if you are having a difficult time clearing this matter up, you must go in person to a regional agency. Here is a list of regional agency offices Regional Agency Offcies. If it is necessary for you to appear in person because all else has failed, you should acquire and carry with you an official letter from the State Child Support Enforcement Agency that ensures that you do not owe arrears in child support. Hopefully, everything works out for you. Best of Luck!