The Steps to Obtaining a Child’s Passport
Today’s regulations for travel are stricter than ever before and, before leaving on a trip, it is necessary to check for recent updates. Mothers and fathers who travel with children should pay special attention to requirements for receiving a child’s passport and realize that they are different than the standards for an adult. It may mean a few extra things to do before the trip, but it can save a lot of trouble on the date of departure.
Many parents are under the impression that young children and babies can travel without a passport, but this is inaccurate. Each child needs to have their own passport no matter what age they are, including infants. If a family arrives for a flight without proper documentation for all of the children, they will not be permitted to travel.
When initially applying for a passport, both parents must go with the child to set the process in motion. Parents should be prepared with all of the required forms and not sign any of them until they are in the presence of the acceptance agent. If only one parent has legal custody, they should be prepared with confirmation that they are allowed to travel with the child, such as an adoption decree or a court order permitting an individual parent to travel.
The step that must then be taken is presenting proof that the child is a citizen of the United States. Parents will need to leave these documents with the submission and they will be returned in the mail with the new passport. These documents, among others, could include a previously issued passport or a naturalization certificate.
The mother and father will need to supply proof that they are indeed the parents of the child. Possible forms of proof include a court order establishing custody or a report of birth abroad. If the parent has undergone a name change since receiving the documents used, they will also need to have proof of their legal name change, such as a marriage certificate. Each parent will also need to present a reproduction of their own identification.
The last vital thing for parents to do is issue consent for their child to be given a passport. In order to do this, they both have to appear with the child and sign the paperwork in front of the acceptance agent. If one parent is truly unable to appear, the appearing parent must provide a notarized statement confirming the consent of the second child.
Of course, there is a charge in order to apply for most government documents and a child passport is no different. The passport will cost sixty dollars as well as twenty-five dollars to cover the execution fee. If the passport is needed in less than six weeks, it is advised to get expedited processing, which will cost an additional sixty dollars.