Do You Need Original Birth Certificate for Passport?

Are you planning a big trip outside the United States and need to get your passport in order? You may be wondering what exactly you need to apply for the document besides all the necessary paperwork.

One thing that is required when applying for a U.S. passport is proof of citizenship—and while most assume this means bringing in their birth certificate, other forms of documentation can serve as proof of identity if needed.

Do I Need a Copy of My Birth Certificate To Get A U.S. Passport?

No, you do not necessarily need a copy of your birth certificate to get a U.S. passport. Depending on the situation, other forms of documentation can be used to prove citizenship. Acceptable proof of identity includes naturalization certificates issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), or Consular Reports of Birth Abroad issued by the Department of State, or Certificates of Citizenship issued by USCIS.

Related Read: How Do I Get a Duplicate Birth Certificate?

What Proof of Citizenship Do I Need to Prove Citizenship?

If you can provide any of these documents as proof of citizenship, it will suffice when applying for a U.S. passport. However, if you lack this proof and need to use your birth certificate as evidence, ensure it is an original or certified copy issued by the government agency from where you were born.

Without valid proof of citizenship, your passport application will be denied.

It’s also important to remember that even if you have one of the mentioned documents as proof of identity and citizenship, you must also present additional verification such as a driver’s license, state-issued ID card, or other government-issued photo identification.

DS-11 Application Form

Additionally, you will need to complete Form DS-11 and present it upon submission of your passport application. You must also provide a photocopy of the front and back of your current driver’s license/state ID and any other form of identification you are presenting for verification. Without all of these documents, your application will likely be denied.

In addition, you will have to possess other compensating documents that will confirm that you are truly a United States citizen. Following this paragraph is a list of documents that can help to validate your United States citizenship.

What Other Documents Will You Need to Get a Passport?

  • A letter from the Vital Statistics office in your State of birth contains the applicant’s name and the years their birth records were searched.
  • Any early public records that will help prove your birth within the United States.

On the contrary, if you were not born in the United States, and your parents did not document your birth with the United States Embassy or Consulate in the country you were born in, you might still be able to obtain a passport. The following will have to be provided:

  • A foreign birth certificate that contains the parents’ names.
  • Proof that your parents are United States citizens.
  • The marriage certificate of your parents.

Getting a U.S. passport is an exciting way to have access to countries all over the world. But in order to do so, there are certain requirements you need to meet in order to ensure a successful application process. One of these requirements is providing a copy of your birth certificate as proof of citizenship and identity.

In general, passport applicants born in the United States must present a certified copy of their birth certificate in the state where they were born when applying for a passport.

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