U.S. Department of State has Allowed (Starting in at least 2013) USCs to Keep their U.S. Passports After Oath and Prior to Receiving CLN
Washington Post journalist, Ms. had an interesting article on March 3, 2015, titled Yes, the State Department can jump on a problem and fix it in record time.
The focus of the article was that the U.S. Department of State can indeed fix a problem (in this case how and when U.S. passports are taken from U.S. citizens who take the oath of renunciation).
The article was a bit of a surprise to me, as I have had experience with several clients where the Consulate offices have indeed allowed the U.S. citizen to physically maintain their U.S. passport after taking the Oath of Renunciation (Form DS-4080, Oath of Renunciation of the Nationality of the United States) but prior to actually receiving the “Certificate of Loss of Nationality” (“CLN”).
After a U.S. citizen has formally renounced (or relinquished) their U.S. citizenship, the U.S. Department of State provides a CLN. This form can be located here at – Certificate of Loss of Nationality of the United States, Form DS-4083 (CLN)
You can go to the page “U.S. Department of State” under “Resources” for further U.S. Department of State Documents related to loss of nationality.
Sometimes, the U.S. Department of State will take several months to process the file in Washington D.C., before they actually issue the CLN. I have had cases (worst case scenarios) that take upwards of 9-10 months. See, The IRS does not give a “Certificate of Expatriation” or similar tax document . . .
However, my experience on several cases is that consular officer will generally allow the individual to physically keep the U.S. passport until the CLN is actually issued and received by the individual in exchange for their passport. This has been the case for some 2 +/- years.
This procedure has been formalized in the Foreign Affairs Manual which added the additional key language in paragraph (4) regarding U.S. citizens who need their passport for travel to the U.S.