In our February 2008 Client Alert we reported that the Department of State was going to be issuing a new document, the Passport Card, which would be valid only for land and sea crossings between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean. The Passport Card is now in full production.

The new card provides a less expensive and more portable alternative to the traditional passport book, and will expedite document processing at U.S. land and sea ports-of-entry for U.S. citizens traveling to Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Bermuda. While the card is more limited in its uses for international travel (e.g., it may not be used for international air travel), it is a valid passport that attests to the U.S. citizenship and identity of the bearer.

The USCIS recently announced that the Passport Card may also be used for the Form I-9 process and can be accepted by employers participating in the E-Verify program. The Passport Card is considered a “List A” document that may be presented by newly hired employees during the employment eligibility verification process to show work-authorized status. “List A” documents are those used by employees to prove both identity and work authorization when completing the Form I-9.