The government of France is the only government that can issue or renew a French passport. A passport is an official government document that permits the holder to travel to and from his home country. It also verifies the holder's identity.
Your French passport is valid until its expiration date. At that time, it is no longer valid for travel. Therefore, it is wise not to wait until the last minute to renew a passport. Volume can get very heavy during peak travel times. By anticipating the need and taking care of passport renewal in a timely manner, you will reduce your stress.
To renew a French passport in the United States, you must go to the French consulate. A French passport cannot be renewed via the Internet. Older passports are not machine-readable and replacement takes approximately three weeks. The consulate will return an older, still valid passport for the interim upon proof of emergency.
To renew your passport you will need to present the old passport as well as some proof of status such as a green card, employment authorisation form or a valid U.S. visa.
You must include two recent passport photos. They can be in colour or in black-and-white. The photos should be 50x50mm (2x2 inches) with your head in the centre of the photograph.
If the renewal is for a passport that expired more than two years ago, you must also provide one of the following: a valid French identity card or certificate or declaration of acquisition of French nationality, a naturalisation certificate or the French long-form copy of your birth certificate.
If, after you have appeared at the French consulate, you want your passport returned by mail, you must leave a prepaid (certified or FedEx), self-addressed envelope with the consulate.
French consulates are located in the following major cities: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco and Washington D.C. Smaller town and cities often have a French Honorary Consul. Passport renewal is free with the presentation of your old passport.