Apply for U.S. Passports for Minors

How to Apply for U.S. Passports for Minors and Their Requirements

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Apply for U.S. Passports for Minors


All minors under 16 must submit Form DS-11 in person, along with two parents or legal guardians. Form DS-82 cannot be used to renew your child’s passport. Children’s passports are only valid for five years until they turn sixteen.

How to Apply for U.S. Passports for Minors and Their Requirements

The conditions and steps for applying for a minor’s U.S. passport are listed below.

1. Fill Out the Right Form

Both first-time and renewal in-person applicants must fill out a passport application, form DS-11, for each applicant. A fillable version of this form is available. We suggest printing this form, then choose “Save as PDF” to create an electronic backup of your revisions. Form DS-11 is the only application that our office can handle.

Note: Please provide the first and last name of a parent who resides at this address after the words “C/O” [Care Of] on line 2 of box 8, mailing address.

Please print the DS-11 in black ink, on two separate sheets (not front and back), with all fields filled in. The form’s dimensions must match the industry standard of 8 12 x 11 inches.

2. Present proof of U.S. citizenship

One of the following proofs of your child’s citizenship in the United States is required. Your proof must be a tangible, certified original, or certified copy. Not accepted are photocopies or copies that have been notarized.

Unharmed, fully valid U.S. passport (expired passports are accepted). When a document is/was entirely valid, it is suitable for 10 years for adults and 5 years for minors under 16.

Birth certificate issued in the U.S. that satisfies the following criteria:

  • Issued by the birth state, county, or city, the applicant’s full name, birth date, and place of birth are listed.
  • Gives the full name of the parent(s).
  • The date was submitted to the registrar’s office (must be within one year of birth)
  • Contains the seal of the issuing authority and the signature of the registrar
  • Birth Certificate of Citizenship or Consular Report of Foreign Birth

For further information or if you cannot provide your kid with one of the acceptable documents listed above, please check Citizenship Evidence.

Please be aware that you cannot submit a mobile or electronic birth certificate as proof of your child’s citizenship in the United States. You must provide physical proof of your U.S. citizenship and a photocopy of the relevant paperwork.

3. Bring a copy of your proof of U.S. citizenship.

A photocopy of the front and back, if there is printed information of the U.S. citizenship evidence you’re submitting, is required when applying for a minor’s U.S. passport.

  • Legible photocopies are required.

       On 8.5″ x 11″ white standard paper.

          Dark and light


You can send a second certified copy of your citizenship documentation, which we will preserve if you don’t wish to submit a photocopy. Your passport application may be delayed unless you send a photocopy of your citizenship proof.

4. Display Parental Relations

When a child applies for a passport, you must provide paperwork naming the parent(s) or guardian(s) on the application.

The following examples of parental relationships are possible:

  • American birth certificate (also evidence of U.S. citizenship)
  • Consular Report of Foreign Birth or Birth Certificate (also evidence of U.S. citizenship)
  • Birth certificate issued abroad
  • Adoption ruling
  • Divorce or custody judgment
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Please be aware: A U.S. birth certificate is one example of a document that demonstrates both parentage and citizenship. These papers must be certified copies or originals (not photocopies).

5. Display ID

One of the following identity documents (I.D.s) must be provided by the parents or guardians to the acceptance agent:

  • Unharmed U.S. passport book or passport card, whether current or expired
  • A driver’s license that is in-state and in good standing, or an improved license with a photo
  • Documentation of Naturalization
  • Document proving citizenship
  • I.D. for a government worker (city, county, state, or federal)
  • U.S. military I.D. or dependent military I.D.
  • Foreign passport that is currently (valid)
  • The U.S. Permanent Resident Card (Green Card), frequently utilized by a parent of a U.S. citizen child applicant, is known as a Matricula Consular (Mexican Consular ID).
  • Reliable Traveler I.D.s (including valid Global Entry, FAST, SENTRI, and NEXUS cards)
  • Native American tribal photo I.D.s and enhanced tribal cards

Other documents Include:

1) An in-state, completely functional learner’s permit with a photo

2) A fully functional non-driver I.D. with a photo or

3) A temporary driver’s license with a photo.

Note: When presenting one of these three documents, you might be asked to show another form of Identification.

Please check Identification if you can’t provide one of the I.D.s mentioned above or if you want more details.

Please be aware that certain states now provide digital I.D.s, also called mobile I.D.s or mobile driver’s licenses. These digital I.D.s are unacceptable when you apply for your child’s U.S. passport. You must still present a physical I.D. with a photo and a photocopy of the I.D.

You need to show another I.D. if you use an out-of-state identification.

6. Bring a copy of your I.D.

Give the acceptance agent a photocopy of the front and back of each I.D. you present.

The ID copies need to be;

  • The photocopy must be on standard 8 1/2 x 11″ white paper.
  • Double-sided photocopies are not possible.
  • Keep the photograph size the same (although you may enlarge it).

7. Display parental approval

A child’s passport cannot be issued without the consent of both parents or legal guardians. The ideal approach to handle this is for both parents/guardians to apply for the child’s passport together personally.

What if one or both parents or guardians cannot attend in person?

If so, you are the only person with legal power.

You need to include proof of this with your application. Examples comprise:

  • A complete court order, such as a divorce decree or other custody order, gives you sole legal custody of the child.
  • A complete court order allowing you to apply for your child’s passport expressly (photocopy is acceptable)
  • Authenticated copy of the child’s birth certificate indicating that you are the only parent on it
  • A certified copy of the adoption judgment naming you as the sole adoptive parent
  • Certified copy of the court’s declaration of the parent’s incapacity who is unable to attend in person
  • A certified copy of the parent’s death record if they cannot appear in person.
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One parent unable to attend

If one parent or legal guardian cannot accompany the kid to the passport application, they may grant consent by signing Form DS-3053, “Statement of Consent.” The paperwork must be filled out and included with the child’s passport application.

The parent who is unable to accompany the kid must: Sign and date Form DS-3053 in front of a notary public who is duly accredited;

Together with Form DS-3053, send a photocopy of the front and back of the identification card that the signer gives the notary public.

Please be aware that a DS-3053 cannot be notarized locally by a notary public in some nations and must be done at a U.S. embassy or consulate. The other parent is nowhere to be found.

Form DS-5525, “Statement of Exigent/Special Family Circumstances,” must be submitted.

And fill out the form as completely as you can.

And it could be necessary to provide more evidence. A few examples are a custody order, an indictment order, or a restraining order to prevent international parental child abduction.

The non-applying parent should typically be able to present a notarized Form DS-3053 if the military is deploying them. You must provide either military orders with a Form DS-5525 proving the non-applying parent cannot be reached because they are on a particular assignment for more than 30 days away from their duty station OR a signed statement from the non-applying parent’s commanding officer that they are unreachable in the uncommon circumstance that the non-applying parent cannot be contacted.

Both parents are unable to appear

A Form DS-3053: “Declaration of Consent” or a notarized statement from both parents/guardians granting that third party permission to apply for the child’s passport is required when a third party wants to apply for the child.

A photocopy of the parents’ or guardians’ I.D. must be attached to the statement.

The third party must provide proof of the consenting parent’s or guardian’s sole custody when only one parent or guardian is named in the statement.

Please Take Note A parent’s written consent that cannot be shown in person must be less than three months old.

8. Submit a Photo

You need to submit one photo of your child. Ensure the photo complies with our requirements to avoid processing delays.

Your photo should not be stapled or attached to the form. The photo will be reviewed and stapled by the acceptance agent or passport employee taking your child’s form.

For an extra price, certain passport acceptance locations offer photo services.

9. Determine Fees for Minor Applicants:

Execution (Acceptance) Fee Product Form Application Fee

  • DS-11 Passport Book $100 $35
  • DS-11 Passport Card $15 $35
  • DS-11 Passport Book & Card $115 $35

Please be aware that you must pay both the application fee and the execution charge separately.

The cost of expedited service is $60 more. Please visit Passport Fees for details on payment methods and a complete list of costs and services.

10. Send Your Finished Application in internally to the U.S.:

You must visit a passport acceptance facility in person to submit your completed application, together with citizenship documentation, copies of your Identification, a photo, and fees.

If you are going away soon, your kid can submit a passport application at a passport office. For more details, read Get My Passport Fast.

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Outside of the United States: Since procedures differ, don’t hesitate to contact your local U.S. Embassy and Consulate for information on submitting your child’s documentation.

11. Check the Status of Your Application

You can do so online to keep track of an application’s progress.

Passport forms

  • DS-5525: Statement of Exigent/Special Family Circumstances – Issuing a Passport to a Minor Under Age 16; DS-11: Application for a U.S. Passport to be completed online; DS-3053: Statement of Consent – Issuing a Passport to a Minor Under Age 16;

Transaction Times

Regular: 6 to 9 weeks*; expedited: an additional $60. takes 3 to 5 weeks*. *Processing timeframes start when we receive your application at a passport agency or center, not the day you apply online or by mail.

  •  Rapid at the Agency or the Center: International travel is required within 14 days.
  • Please make a reservation before receiving your passport card and citizenship paperwork in a second and third mailing.

The location has changed. How can I make changes to my kid’s application?

  • The National Passport Information Center should be contacted if the mailing address you supplied on your child’s application has changed and you are still waiting for your child’s U.S. passport book, passport card, or return of citizenship evidence documents. 
  • When submitting your child’s passport application, we advise you to include your name in the “In Care Of” portion of the Mailing Address section on Form DS-11. If your address changed after you obtained your child’s passport, you do not need to inform us.


 The article mentioned above outlines the prerequisites and application process for a U.S. passport for a minor.


 Can I apply online or by mail for my child?

No, applications for passports by mail cannot be submitted by anybody under 16. A child’s passport cannot be applied for online, either.

Do I need an appointment to apply at an institution for acceptance?

Specific acceptance centers demand appointments, while others do not. We advise phoning the accepting facility to confirm their opening hours, accepted payment methods, and appointment prerequisites. Locate your facility for acceptance.

What if my child and I have a last name different from mine?

As long as your full name is listed in the parental relationship paperwork, you and your child can have different last names. Please provide evidence of your legal name change if you have changed your name after the parental relationship paperwork was created (e.g., marriage certificate or court order).

My child’s U.S. birth certificate specifies that making copies is prohibited. What do I do?

You may provide a second certified copy of your child’s birth certificate instead of a photocopy if you like. This second certified copy will be kept for our files.


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