Find helpful resources for certain life events when traveling abroad including death of an American, a U.S. citizen marrying outside the U.S. and getting legal documents verified to use in another country. Also, learn about the parental alert program for a child's passport application.
You can present a legal document issued in the United States for use in another country. These documents can include court orders, contracts, vital records, and educational diplomas.
The process to get a document authenticated depends on the specific document, the state in which it was issued, and other factors. Check with your state’s document authentication agency and the Authentications and Apostilles page from the Department of State (DOS).
The U.S. Department of State's Children's Passport Issuance Alert Program (CPIAP) notifies the parent or guardian of participating children whenever an application for a U.S. Passport is submitted in their name and verify whether the parent(s) approve this passport being issued. You must be the legal parent or guardian of each child under the age of 18 to enroll in the program.
This program does not limit the issuance of a passport, nor does it track or restrict its use.
The Consular Report of Death is required in U.S. legal proceedings instead of the foreign death certificate. You may get up to 20 certified copies of this document at no charge from the U.S. Embassy or consulate in the country where the death occurred. To request a Consular Report of Death for a specific country, select "Death of a U.S. Citizen" under U.S. Citizen Services on the embassy's website. For additional copies, contact the Passport Services Vital Records Office at 1-202-485-8300.
Marriage of an American Citizen Outside the United States
The United States generally recognizes marriages abroad. However, each state and territory determines its own marriage laws. The Department of State also provides information on marriage abroad.
To check on the procedures in another country, start with the embassy or consulate for that country.
U.S. Citizenship for People Born Abroad or in U.S. Territories
You are a U.S. citizen if:
You have a birth certificate issued by a U.S. state or territory. If you were born in a U.S. territory, but do not have a birth certificate issued by that territory, you may be able to verify your citizenship status using other documents.
You were born outside of the U.S. to at least one U.S. citizen parent and your parent(s) recorded your birth with the U.S. Embassy or consulate in that country:
If the Embassy or consulate did not issue a Consular Report of Birth Abroad and you are 18 years of age or older, learn how to get a Certificate of Citizenship from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) instead. This document is proof of your U.S. citizenship.