How to Get a Passport for an American Child

How to Get a Passport for an American Child
Passports are not just for travelers seeking vacations in new areas. If your hiking or biking trip crosses international borders or if your participation requires flying to a destination in a foreign country, you will need passports for everyone, including your children. The process can take several weeks, so plan ahead. If there is a possibility that your interest in outdoor activities might lead you and your family onto foreign grounds, getting passports for your minor children now eliminates any last-minute hassles when the issue arises.

Instructions

Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Photo ID of both parents Birth certificate/adoption decree Court orders for Custody/guardianship Witness (if no ID is available)
  • Photo ID of both parents
  • Birth certificate/adoption decree
  • Court orders for Custody/guardianship
  • Witness (if no ID is available)
Step 1
Apply in person with your child. Both parents must go with their child to your nearest passport acceptance facility. If you are unsure of the location of facilities in your area, the U.S. State Department provides an online searchable database to find one near you.
Step 2
Bring photo identification. If your child does not have photo identification, the parent or guardian's ID will be used. Provide a photocopy of the ID card.
Step 3
Provide at least one form of primary identification. This includes a birth certificate with both parents' names on the certificate, adoption decrees with both parents' names or court orders establishing custody or guardianship.
Step 4
Supply parental identification. This includes a previous U.S. passport, naturalization papers, valid driver's license or current government or military ID.
Step 5
Use a witness for secondary identification if you do not have anything from the primary identification category. You must bring someone with you who has known you for more than 2 years, is a U.S. Citizen or permanent resident and has valid ID. He must fill out an affidavit of Identifying Witness (form DS-71) before a passport agent.
Step 6
Make a photocopy of each piece of identification. The photocopy must be on an 8 ½-inch-by-11-inch sheet of paper. Images can be enlarged not reduced.
Step 7
Sign the consent authorizing passport issuance for any child younger than16.
Step 8
Provide two identical passport photos and pay the fee for obtaining a passport.

Article Written By Nannette Richford

Nannette Richford is an avid gardener, teacher and nature enthusiast with more than four years' experience in online writing. Richford holds a Bachelor of Science in secondary education from the University of Maine Orono and certifications in teaching 7-12 English, K-8 General Elementary and Birth to age 5.

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