RM lost my passport – HMPO useless

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    Hi, Not sure if anyone can help me but I am running out of ideas so thought it was worth a try!

    I applied for a passport renewal online on the 2nd Feb and sent my old passport back via 1st class recorded on th e 5th Feb.

    My old passport never arrived with HMPO (assume lost by Royal Mail who have now compensated me).

    My application is completely stalled. I have called HMPO on 12 separate occasions and filled out their web form twice. Every time I am fobbed off or given advice that conflicts with what I have been told previously.

    I spoke to an agent a couple of weeks ago who advised me to declare my passport lost, and my application would just resume as normal. I did this on the 28th Feb.

    Renewals are now telling me that my passport won’t be officially lost until lost & stolen call me to acknowledge. I have been waiting for nearly two weeks for this call. One advisor told me to simply submit a new application, another said I need to ask them to change it from a renewal to a replacement, but that another department needs to do this. I’ve called up and suggested this a couple of times but I just go into a phone queue and nobody picks up.

    I can’t face calling the passport office again and have zero faith that any promised callback will ever happen. I am completely at the end of my tether and losing sleep over this.

    What can I do?


    The same situation happened to me with my sons passport. The tracked envelope arrived but it had nothing in it.
    What you need to do is cancel the passport using the online form – if you have not got a cancellation reference number when doing this, phone the line and ask to speak to the lost and stolen team on the phone – I was told I’d get a call back but I didn’t so I called everyday and on day 3 I got through on the line. I started by saying that I was concerned that an un-cancelled passport was out there so I think the call handler took it seriously.
    I don’t know why my online cancellation requests didn’t go through by the man on the lost passport line cancelled it on the spot and gave me a reference number. I then used their online form to ask them to convert the existing renewal to a lost in transit and gave them the cancelled reference number. I have since got an email confirming that they have done this and the application is hopefully sat in the processing queue.
    Hope this helps and hope it gets sorted for you soon.


    Hi wastedoranges,

    I was finally able to access the HMPO webchat and explain the situation. My application moved almost immediately to ‘Application being processed’

    A month on and nothing else has happened.

    Application being processed 2:35pm on 11 March 2022
    Documents received 11:01am on 11 March 2022
    Application received 12:39pm on 2 February 2022
    Application submitted 12:39pm on 2 February 2022

    Looking elsewhere in the forum I am seeing other applications being approved in a couple of days yet mine is just sitting there. It’s now 10 weeks since I posted my old passport back.

    The tracking site tells me not to contact HMPO about progress. Is it normal to sit at ‘Application being processed’ for a month? It just feels like anything that can go wrong is going wrong with this application.

    Office is Liverpool by the way.


    We have the same issue. Applied for child renewal on 15 April and sent old passport back RM signed for. It never arrived. RM basically lost the passport in transit – which they have now compensated us for.

    After countless calls HMPO advice was to generate a lost passport number online and call them back with it. That has now been done and they said this would change our application from a renewal to a replacement and tracking would be updated in 24-48 hours (so we’d know it was back on track and not sitting on hold waiting for a passport that may never show up). It’s 6 days now and nothing has changed. Waiting on umpteenth call back from the progress team. Online tracker shows no change – just the original date we applied – 15 April.

    Basically 1 month in and no progress. waiting on umpteenth call back from Progress Team.

    Hope you did get your get your passports back by now!?

    Do you have any other tips / things we can try to get it moving along please? It seems that every person you speak to has a different story… so frustrating. 🙁


    Hi mtrows,

    I eventually got my passport after 13 weeks and the whole process was a dreadful experience.

    I never received any of the promised call backs and none of my complaints were ever acknowledged.

    The only tip I would have is just keep trying to get onto the webchat. It’s unavailable (too busy) >90% of the time, but both times that I managed to get on it, my application moved immediately. (Went from ‘Application received’ to ‘Documents received’ within a couple of hours of my giving my lost reference via the webchat, and the second time, went from ‘Application processing’ to passport on my doorstep within a couple of days).
    The second one may have been a coincidence as the webchat agent was adamant there was nothing they can do, seems unlikely to me though.

    Seems that the people on the end of the phoneline are drones who aren’t interested in doing anything other than reading from a script. If you can type your problem out you can more easily explain what the issue is.

    Good luck and I hope that you aren’t waiting as long as I was.


    Thanks jonnyhtfc90 – will keep trying the webchat route too then plus awaiting the Progress Teams call back…again…. To be fair they did call us back before so there is hope on the call but less so on any action as a result! Very pleased to hear you did receive you passport in the end – hurrah!

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