Here’s another reason to get your passport application in: The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has just announced a rule change regarding the documents you can use to prove your employment eligibility.  Before the rule change,  you could use even an expired passport to prove that you are eligible to work in the United States.  However, starting January 31, 2009, employers will have to use a new version of the I-9 form, which requires a current passport or another current List B document to prove employment eligibility.

The changes were made at the request of the US Department of Homeland Security, since expired passports are more likely to have been tampered with than passports that are still valid. So, if you’ve been using your passport to prove your work eligibility, check the expiration date. It’s a good idea to submit a new passport application now if your passport is approaching or past its expiration date. That way, you’ll be prepared if you need to change jobs, or if your current employer needs to re-verify your employment eligibility status.  If you have any questions about how to renew your passport, this step-by-step guide to passport renewal will help.

If you’d like to have your new passport before the new rules go into effect on January 31, 2009, it’s best to use an expediting company to submit your passport application. A private passport expediting service like will provide you with professional help on your new passport application to make sure that you have your new passport when you need it.