Passports

The Clerk of Court also assists citizens in obtaining and renewing their passport. The Clerk’s Office is now a ONE STOP SHOP for applying for passports. We now offer passport photos which are printed in compliance with U.S. Government regulations. No appointments are required and there is usually no waiting for this service.

All persons applying for a passport must appear in person at the Clerk’s Office. To avoid having to come to the Clerk’s Office twice, the following recommendations are made for your visit:

  • Uniforms should not be worn in the photograph (except for religious attire).
  • Writing or photos on shirts is discouraged.
  • A hat or headgear that obscures the hair or hairline should not be worn (except for religious attire).
  • Glasses must be removed unless they are required for medical reasons (a medical certificate may be required).
  • Any exceptions noted above may require a brief written note or explanation.
  • An unacceptable photograph may delay the issuance of a passport.

Photos are not required to be taken by the Clerk’s Office (there are other businesses who offer this service) and we recommend you read the photo requirements as noted on the website https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/photos.html.

Other helpful passport information:

  • You may complete the passport application (link found below) in advance of coming to the Clerk’s Office. You should use BLACK INK ONLY.
  • DO NOT SIGN the application until you are in front of a deputy clerk. The Clerk’s Office must witness your signature.
  • The U.S. Department of State does not accept cash or credit cards. Separate payment must be made to the Clerk’s Office and the U.S. Department of State. So, if you are paying by check or money order, TWO separate checks or money orders will be required. You can pay the Clerk’s Office by cash or credit card and the U.S. Department of State by check or money order.
  • Some cruise lines will let you board without a passport but still require other documentation such as a birth certificate, certified copy of your official name change, etc… If you have questions, be sure to call your cruise line prior to your trip and verify what documentation they require for you to board.
  • Depending on the destination of your cruise ship, passports may not be required but it may be prudent to have one anyway in the event of an emergency and you are required to leave the ship.
  • All submitted documents must be original or certified as an original including birth certificates. Please note that these documents will be sent with your passport application but will be returned to you from the passport agency. The Clerk’s Office is not responsible for any lost documents by the passport agency.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a passport?
A passport is an internationally recognized travel document attesting to the identity and nationality of the bearer of the passport. The passport is a request on the part of the issuing government that officials of foreign governments permit the bearer to travel in their territories and to afford them all lawful aid and protection.

Who needs a passport?
Anyone, including infants, departing from the Unites States and entering the United States from outside the United States needs a passport. The U.S. Department of State provides information regarding the passport and visa requirements of foreign countries and their respective fees. A passport is NOT required for travel by U.S. Citizens to any territory or waters, including Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Proof of identity and citizenship is ALWAYS required.

*** Recommendation by the U.S. Department of State, Miami Passport Agency ***
Parents and guardians of minors who are applying for a passport for travel out of the country are advised as a best practice to apply for a passport as well even if the minor is planning to travel without the parent or guardian. In the event of an emergency while your child is outside of the country the parent or guardian will be able to travel immediately if necessary. Having a valid U.S. passport eliminates the stress of having to apply for a passport on an urgent basis in an emergency. For more information regarding passport and visa requirements, please visit https://travel.state.gov/content/travel.html .

What are the requirements for a passport?
The requirements for a U.S. passport are federal requirements and are not set or established by the Clerk’ Office. The following is required to apply for a passport:

  • Proof of Identity – a current valid driver’s license, military identification, etc…
  • Certified copy of birth record – The birth record must be certified by the state or U.S. Territory in which the birth took place. A raised or embossed seal must be affixed to the birth record.
  • Proof of Citizenship – If you were born outside the U.S. a Certificate of Naturalization or Certificate of Citizenship is required.
  • Photo – a recent 2” x 2” photo is required. The Clerk’s Office can provide you with this photo. If you obtain this photo elsewhere, please visit this website for more information: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/photos.html
  • Completed Passport Application (DS-11 form) – Passport application forms can be found here: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/forms.html
  • Other documents MAY be required to process your passport application and these documents may not be known until you are in our presence.

Do I have to apply for a passport in person?
Yes. All passport applicants, regardless of age, MUST personally appear in our office. Please note that for minors, Federal law requires BOTH parents or legal guardians’ signatures on a passport application for a child 15 years of age or younger, or documentation of the absence of the second parent. It is strongly encouraged for both parents or guardians to appear in person when applying for a child’s passport.

A minor ages 16 and 17 may apply for a passport without a parent or guardian as long as they have an operator’s driver’s license and written consent from the parents or guardians or can submit a parent’s or guardian’s check for payment of the passport application. We recommend at least one parent be present to sign the passport application so as not to delay the passport application process.

How long is a passport valid?
The passport book and card are valid for ten (10) years if you are 16 years of age or older. The passport book and card are valid for five (5) years if you are 15 years of age or younger.

Can a passport be renewed by mail?
Yes, if your most recent passport was issued when you were at least 16 years old, was issued within the past 15 years, and you use the same name as on your most recent passport OR you have had your name changed by marriage or court order and you can submit proper documentation to reflect the name change. All passport renewals require the completion of DS-82 Form which can be obtained from the following website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/forms.html

How long does it take to get a passport?
Current processing times can be viewed at the following website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/processing-times.html. If you need your passport sooner you may request expedited services at an additional cost.

Where can I get passport forms?
You can obtain any passport form from the Clerk’s Office or you can download them online from https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/forms.html.

What are the fees for passports?
When coming to the Clerk’s Office to apply for a passport you MUST have two separate forms of payment. There will be a fee paid to the passport agency and a separate fee paid to the Clerk’s Office. The passport agency fees can be reviewed at the following website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/requirements/fees.html.

The Clerk’s Office fees are as follows:

  • $35.00 Execution Fee – this fee is a federally regulated fee and is not set by the Clerk’s Office.
  • $10.70 Passport Photo Fee
  • U.S. Postal Fees – the postal fees are set by the U.S. Postal Service, are subject to change, and may vary. Overnight fees MAY be required.

If you have any questions, please call (850) 926-0326 or (850) 926-0322