The U.S. State Department has stopped issuing passports due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with exceptions for people who have a “qualified life-or-death emergency.”
In a statement published March 27, the State Department advised Americans to avoid all international travel due to the spread of COVID-19, unless someone is experiencing an emergency and needs to travel within 72 hours.
Situations that qualify as “life-or-death emergencies” include serious illnesses, injuries or deaths among members of a person’s immediate family that requires travel outside of the U.S., according to the statement.
People who need a passport for emergency travel at this time are required to provide proof of the emergency, such as a death certificate or a signed letter from a hospital or doctor, along with proof of international travel, like a ticket or flight itinerary, and a passport application with supporting documents.
Routine applications or renewal requests for passports that come after March 20 will not receive expedited service, and the State Department has said regular service may be delayed.
- Mickey Guyton Is TIME's 2022 Breakthrough Artist of the Year
- The 10 Best Nonfiction Books of 2022
- Column: What Elon Musk Gets Wrong About Free Speech
- The Forgotten Story of One of the First U.S. Soldiers Killed Overseas After Pearl Harbor
- Why You're More Likely to Get Sick in the Winter, According to New Research
- Column: What the Protests Tell Us About China's Future
- 18 Last-Minute Gifts for Everyone on Your List
- Despite World Cup Heartbreak, the Future Looks Bright for Men's Soccer in the U.S.