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Passport Requirements

Passport Requirements
Source: U.S. Dep't of State

Special Requirements for Children Under Age 16 Minor Children must Apply in Person

All children regardless of age (including newborns and infants) must have their own passport.

For application requirements for children ages 16 & 17 see instructions for First Time applicants

1. Provide Application Form DS-11

 

NOTE: Please do NOT sign Form DS-11 the Passport Acceptance Agent instructs you to do so.  If your child is unable to sign his or her own name, a parent may sign for the child by writing the child's name on the signature line and signing the parent's name above the child's name. Example:  

Jane Doe for

Child M. Doe

Signature of Bearer

2. Submit Proof of U.S. Citizenship (for minors under age 16)
For Minors under Age 16 you must establish proof of citizenship AND proof of relationship.  Previous U.S. passports are not acceptable as proof of relationship to the applying parent(s)/guardian(s).  See number 3 below for proof of relationship.

All documents submitted with the application as evidence of U.S. citizenship will be returned with the issued passport.  See Processing Times.

For proof of citizenship, you will need to submit one of the following:

  • Certified U.S. birth certificate ; or
  • Previous fully valid U.S. Passport; or
  • Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240); or
  • Certification of Birth Abroad (Form DS-1350); or
  • Certificate of Citizenship or Naturalization from USCIS.

NOTE: A certified birth certificate has a registrar's raised, embossed, Impressed or multicolored seal, registrar's signature, and the Date the certificate was filed with the registrar's office, which must be within 1 year of your birth

A Delayed Birth Certificate filed more than one year after your birth may be acceptable if it:

  • Listed the documentation used to create it and
  • Signed by the attending physician or midwife, or, lists an affidavit signed by the parents, or shows early public records.

If you do NOT have a previous U.S. passport or a certified birth certificate, you will need :

  1. Letter of No Record

Issued by the state with your name, date of birth, which years were searched for a birth record and that there is no birth certificate on file for you.

  1. AND as many of the following as possible:
  • Baptismal certificate
  • Hospital birth certificate  
  • Census record
  • Early school record
  • Family bible record
  • Doctor's record of post-natal care

NOTES:

  • These documents must be early public records showing the date and place of birth, preferably created within the first five years of your life.
  • You may also submit an Affidavit of Birth, form DS-10A, from an older blood relative, i.e., a parent, aunt, uncle, sibling, who has personal knowledge of your birth. It must be notarized or have the seal and signature of the acceptance agent.

NOTE: The following are NOT proof of citizenship

  • Voter registration cards
  • Army discharge papers

Click here for information on the Child Citizenship Act of 2000

 

3. Present Evidence of Child's Relationship to Parents/Guardians (for minors under age 16)
 
Note: Previous U.S. passports are not acceptable as proof of relationship to the applying parent(s)/guardian(s).

You will need to submit one of the following:

  • Certified U.S. birth certificate (with parents' names); or
  • Certified Foreign Birth Certificate (with parents' names and translation, if necessary); or
  • Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) (with parents' names); or
  • Certification of Birth Abroad ( Form DS-1350) (with parents' names); or
  • Adoption Decree ( with adopting parents' names); or
  • Court Order Establishing Custody; or
  • Court Order Establishing Guardianship.

NOTE: If the parent(s)'/guardian's name(s) is/are other than that on these documents, evidence of legal name change is required.

4. Provide Parental Identification (for minors under age 16)
 
Each parent or guardian must submit one of the following:
  • Valid Drivers License
  • Valid Official U.S. Military ID
  • Valid U.S. Gov't ID
  • Valid U.S. or Foreign Passport with recognizable photo
  • Naturalization/Citizenship Certificate from USCIS with recognizable photo
  • Alien Resident Card from USCIS

NOTE: Your Social Security Card does NOT prove your identity .

If none of these are available , you will need:

  1. Some signature documents, not acceptable alone as ID

(ex: a combination of documents, such as your Social Security card, credit card, bank card, library card, etc.)

AND

  1. A person who can vouch for you. He/she must
  • Have known you for at least 2 years,
  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident,
  • Have valid ID, and
  • Fill out a Form DS-71 in the presence of a passport agent.
5. Present Parental Application Permission Documentation (for minors under age 16)
 
1. Both parents must appear together and sign or

2. One parent appears, signs, and submits second parent's notarized statement of consent authorizing passport issuance for the child (a notarized  Form DS-3053, Statement of Consent: Issuance of a Passport to a Minor Under Age 16, or a notarized written statement with the same information on a sheet of paper from the non-appearing parent) or

3. One parents appears, signs, and submits primary evidence of sole authority to apply (such as one of the following):

  • Child's certified U.S. or foreign birth certificate (with translation, if necessary) listing only applying parent; or
  • Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) or Certification of Birth Abroad (Form DS-1350) listing only applying parent; or
  • Court order granting sole custody to the applying parent (unless child's travel is restricted by that order); or
  • Adoption decree (if applying parents is sole adopting parent); or
  • Court order specifically permitting applying parent's or guardian's travel with the child; or
  • Judicial declaration of incompetence of non-applying parent; or
  • Death certificate of non-applying parent.

If none of the above documentation is available, the applying parent/guardian should submit a Form DS-3053: Statement of Consent or Special Circumstances: Issuance of a Passport to a Minor Under Age 16.

NOTE:

A third-party in loco parentis applying on behalf of a minor under the age of 16 must submit a notarized written statement or affidavit from both parents or guardians authorizing a third-party to apply for a passport. When the statement or affidavit is from only one parent/guardian, the third-party must present evidence of sole custody of the authorizing parent/guardian.

6. Provide Two Passport Photos
Your photographs must be :
  • 2x2 inches in size
  • Identical
  • Taken within the past 6 months, showing current appearance
  • Color
  • Full face, front view with a plain white or off-white background
  • Between 1 inch and 1 3/8 inches from the bottom of the chin to the top of the head
  • Taken in normal street attire
  • Uniforms should not be worn in photographs.
  • Do not wear a hat or headgear that obscures the hair or hairline unless worn daily for religious purposes.
  • If you normally wear prescription glasses, a hearing device, wig or similar articles, they should be worn for your picture.
  • Dark glasses or nonprescription glasses with tinted lenses are not acceptable unless you need them for medical reasons. A medical certificate may be required.

Click here for information on acceptable digitized photos.
Click here for detailed information for professional photographers.

NOTE: Vending machine photos are not generally acceptable

7. Pay the Applicable Fee
Click here to see current passport fees

Methods of Payment -

At Passport Agencies -

Both fees and the surcharge are combined into one payment to the ''U.S. Department of State'':

  • Credit Cards VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover
  • Debit/Check cards (not ATM cards)
  • Checks (personal, certified, cashiers', travelers'), money orders (U.S. Postal, international, currency exchange), bank drafts

Note:  If abroad, U.S. Embassies and Consulates accept the foreign currency equivalent, or a check drawn on a U.S. bank.

At our over 9,000 Passport Acceptance Facilities -

You pay the passport application fee and the security surcharge to the ''U.S. Department of State'' and the execution fee to the facility where you are applying.

For Passport Application Fee:

  • Personal checks, money orders, and bank drafts at all locations
  • Exact cash at some locations (verify with the Acceptance Facility)

For Execution Fee:

  • Money orders and bank drafts at all locations
  • Personal checks and exact cash at some locations (verify with the Acceptance Facility)
  • Credit cards at U.S. Postal Facilities and some other locations (verify with the Acceptance Facility)

Expedite Fee: ( See How to Get Your Passport in a Hurry .)

8. Provide a Social Security Number
If you do not provide your Social Security Number, the Internal Revenue Service may impose a $500 penalty. If you have any questions please call your nearest IRS office.


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