British passport backlog in Washington causes expat outcry

The British Embassy in Washington DC, which handles passports for British citizens living in North and South America, as well as the Caribbean, usually turns around first-time applications for passports within six weeks, and renewals within four weeks, of the date it processes the application fee.

An unexpected surge in demand however means that many expats are now facing a far longer wait, causing problems for those who have booked holidays, or have urgent business to attend to abroad.

Notices on the website of the embassy apologise for the delays, and say that current applicants should expect their passports to take around 10 weeks from the time their credit card is charged.

Stephen Kemp, a British expat who has set up a petition calling for a government investigation into the matter, said however that because it was taking up to six weeks just to process the payments, some Britons would be waiting for around four months in total.

Source: Daily Telegraph