How Do I Apply for a Passport?
How Do I Apply for a Passport?

Updating Your Gender Marker on an Existing Passport or Getting a Passport for the First Time

If you are applying to change your gender marker, submitting a passport application for the first time, or applying for a passport when your old passport has expired, you must apply in person.

You will need to complete and submit:

  1. Application for U.S. Passport (Form DS-11);
  2. Proof of U.S. Citizenship (such as a previous U.S. Passport, certified Birth Certificate, Certificate of Naturalization, or Report of Birth Abroad);
  3. Proof of Identity that contains your signature and photograph that is “a good likeness to you” (such as a previous U.S. Passport, a Driver’s License, a Certificate of Naturalization, Military Identification, or a Government Employee Identification Card). You must present the original AND provide a photocopy of the front and back side with your application;
  4. A recent color photograph 2×2 inches in size;
  5. If you are changing your name on your passport, an Order for Name Change (certified copy showing a seal and officiate/judge signature);
  6. A letter from your Physician confirming your gender transition (the requirements for this letter are listed below); and
  7. Fee (See the Department of State fee schedule for costs:

Take these documents and fees in person to any Passport Acceptance Facility. To find the acceptance facility closest to you, visit the State Department’s website, Passport Acceptance Facility Search Page, at or call the National Passport Information Center at 1-877-487-2778.

 Updating Your Legal Name Only (no gender marker update) on an Existing Valid Passport

When you already have a valid Passport, you may submit a Passport Renewal Application to change your legal name on the passport by mail. You will need to complete and submit:

  1. A Passport Renewal Application (Form DS-82);
  2. Your most recent Passport (book or card);
  3. A recent color photograph 2×2 inches in size;
  4. Order for Name Change (certified copy showing a seal and officiate/judge signature);
  5. Fee (See the Department of State fee schedule for costs:

What is a Passport Card and How Do I Apply For One?

A U.S. passport card is a wallet-sized card that looks like a driver’s license. A passport card is significantly less expensive than a traditional passport book but cannot be used for international travel by air. A passport card may be used as everyday identification within the United States and may be used to enter the United States from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Bermuda at land border crossings or sea ports-of-entry. Application forms and documentation requirements for a passport card are the same as for a passport book; simply check “passport book” on the application form.

How Do I Change a Limited Validity to a Full Validity Passport?

The State Department’s policy still distinguishes between a transition that is “in process” and one that is “complete.” This distinction was originally intended for applicants who had recently begun a gender transition and needed documentation to travel abroad, before the requirement for undergoing a surgical procedure was removed. The language we recommend in our sample letter indicates to the Department of State that the transition is “complete.” However, if you submit a letter that indicates your transition is “in process” you will be issued a limited validity two-year passport.

If you are issued a limited validity two-year passport, to extend to a full validity ten-year passport you should submit the following by mail within two years of the issue date of the limited validity two-year passport:

  • A completed Form DS 5504, Application for a U.S. Passport (Name Change, Data Correction and Limited Passport Book Replacement), along with any necessary documentation indicated in the form;
  • A physician certification, as described in our sample, stating that you have had appropriate clinical treatment for gender transition; and
  • Unless you request expedited service, no new fee is required.

You may mail in your application to the National Passport Processing Center or drop-off your completed application and required documentation to your local State Department Office.  Note that any documents you mail in will be returned if not damaged.

By Mail, Routine Service: National Passport Processing Center, P.O. Box 90107, Philadelphia, PA 19190-0107

By Mail, Expedited Service (Additional Fee): National Passport Processing Center, P.O. Box 90907, Philadelphia, PA 19190-0107

In Person: To locate your local Passport Acceptance Facility, please visit

Can I update a Consular Record of Birth Abroad?

A Consular Record of Birth Abroad (CRBA) is the equivalent of a birth certificate for American citizens born abroad. The policy for passports also applies for updating a CRBA.

To Amend a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, You Must Submit:

  1. A notarized written (or typed) request detailing the amendment or correction needed;
  2. Certified copies of documents justifying the amendment requested, in this case: a) court ordered name change, if applicable, and b) original letter from physician on letterhead (see template letter for passports above);
  3. An original or replacement consular report of birth abroad: any birth record issued from the Department of State such as an FS-240 (for birth after January 3, 2011), replacement FS-240,  Certification of Report of Birth DS-1350 (for birth Nov 1, 1990 – Jan 2, 2011) or Certification of Birth Abroad FS-545 (for birth prior to November 1, 1990); or a notarized affidavit stating the whereabouts of the original or any replacement FS-240, DS-1350, FS-545 issued from the Department of State;
  4. A copy of requester’s valid identification;
  5. A $50.00 check or money order made payable to “Department of State”. The Department will assume no responsibility for cash lost in the mail.

Mail to:

Department of State
Passport Vital Records Section
44132 Mercure Cir.
PO Box 1213
Sterling, VA 20166-1213

To check the status of your FS-240 request, call 202-485-8300. You can find information about amendments on the State Department website here:….

What If I Face Problems Updating my Passport?

The current policy specifically instructs passport specialists to treat transgender applicants with respect, including using appropriate pronouns and not asking unrelated questions. If you encounter improper requests for information, unprofessional behavior, or other difficulties obtaining a passport, you can call the National Passport Information Center at 1-855-865-7755 to make a complaint or submit a complaint online through the Department of State’s Customer Survey. You can also contact NCTE, your Regional Passport Office, or your U.S. Senator’s Office. NCTE is consistently monitoring implementation of this policy.

If you encounter discrimination, harassment or other serious difficulties relating to being transgender while traveling abroad, contact the closest U.S. Consulate or Embassy immediately.