Very very old lost US passport - can an immigration lawyer help?
October 10, 2013 12:25 PM   Subscribe

Technically I have dual Canadian/US citizenship as my father was a US citizen living in Canada when I was born. I had a passport in the mid-1980s as a small child, but it's long gone now. Who should I talk to about getting another one? (details inside)

My father was a US citizen living in Canada at the time of my birth, although he's a Canadian citizen now, and because of that I have/had dual citizenship. My family lived in the US for a few years in the mid-1980s, and during that time I had an American passport. Unfortunately, it's expired and long gone now.

Also unfortunately, my Mother was always the Keeper of the Documents in the family and she passed away suddenly a few years ago, leaving records in chaos. My father is still around and happy to help with any paperwork he can.

I would like to get another US passport now so I have the option of working there. Is this the kind of thing an immigration lawyer would help me sort out? And if so, should I see one in Canada or the US, or does it make a difference?
posted by jess to Law & Government (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
You shouldn't need a lawyer for this. You're a us citizen applying for a passport from Canada, just look up the application form and it will tell you what documents you need. (probably your birth certificate, your dads birth certificate and your parents marriage certificate, or similar).
posted by jacalata at 12:29 PM on October 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Is this the kind of thing an immigration lawyer would help me sort out?

Yes. But it's also the sort of thing the Post Office can help you sort out. Your old passport expired years ago. Just sit down and apply for a new one. Missing passports are only a problem when the missing one is still valid.
posted by valkyryn at 12:33 PM on October 10, 2013 [6 favorites]


[Answer the question being asked. Email the OP if you have information you would like to give them that is not about how to get a passport.]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:55 PM on October 10, 2013


Yes. But it's also the sort of thing the Post Office can help you sort out. Your old passport expired years ago. Just sit down and apply for a new one. Missing passports are only a problem when the missing one is still valid.

As was pointed out in a previous (now-deleted) comment, the OP is living in Canada; Canada Post is unlikely to be able to help them.

I'm a dual citizen as well, although I've never applied for a U.S. passport from Canada. (I've done the reverse, but that doesn't help much here.)

If you can't get your hands on the expired passport, then your proof of U.S. citizenship is your "Consular Report of Birth Abroad." (Just your Canadian birth certificate won't cut it.) You can apparently order a replacement for $50 if your original report is lost. Once you've done that, here are the instructions for first-time passport applications in Canada (which includes you, since your first passport was issued to you as a minor and is now lost.)

You'll have to get to a consulate in person to apply; call your local consulate for details on how to do so in person. Your profile says you live in Vancouver, so this may not be too hard for you; but if you live near the border but not near a consulate, it may be worth your while to drive to the States and apply from within the states. I did this once with my sister; who needed her U.S. passport renewed, we drove from Winnipeg to Hallock, MN and applied there.

And, as has been noted above (in said now-deleted comment), be sure you're square with the IRS before you do this.
posted by Johnny Assay at 1:17 PM on October 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Johnny Assay, thanks! That is exactly what I needed to know, and I appreciate the help.
posted by jess at 1:21 PM on October 10, 2013


If you do have to head to the states, Seattle has a passport agency, located downtown. See here for appointments, directions, hours, parking, kitchen sink.
posted by Sunburnt at 1:40 PM on October 10, 2013


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