How to Get a Passport for a Child
When using LegalNature’s passport services, we guide you through the following process, simplifying it along the way with easy step-by-step instructions. Click to start our questionnaire when you are ready to begin.
Table of Contents
1. Fill Out the Correct Forms
Depending on the situation, LegalNature may need to complete some or all of the following forms for you:
- Application for New U.S. Passport
- Statement of Consent for Issuing a Passport to a Child
- Statement of Special Family Circumstances
Passports for children may not be renewed by mail. Instead, children must complete the steps outlined in this section each time they need to renew their passport.
2. Provide Documentation
You will need to submit the following items with your child’s application:
- Proof of identity AND a photocopy – Present a valid driver’s license (not temporary or learner’s permit), a previous U.S. passport book, a previous U.S. passport card, a valid foreign passport, a Certificate of Naturalization, a Certificate of Citizenship, military identification, a government identification card, or a Matricula Consular (Mexican Consular identification). Also include a photocopy of the front and back of your proof of identity.
- Proof of U.S. citizenship document AND a photocopy – Applicants born in the U.S. must present a U.S. birth certificate or a previous U.S. passport (if you are renewing the passport). This evidence must be an original or certified copy. If you do not have a birth certificate or your certificate was filed more than one year after your birth, then you must submit a registrar’s notice confirming that your birth certificate does not exist and provide evidence of your given name and surname, date of birth, place of birth, official seal (if applicable), and official signature. Applicants who were not born in the U.S. must include a previous U.S. passport, Certificate of Naturalization, Certificate of Citizenship, or Consular Report of Birth Abroad. If you claim citizenship through the naturalization of your parents, birth abroad to a U.S. parent, or adoption by a U.S. parent, then submit evidence as specified on the Department of State form DS-11. Also include a photocopy of the front and back of your proof of citizenship.
- Proof of parental relationship – For this, you may use a U.S. birth certificate, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, Certificate of Birth, foreign birth certificate, adoption decree, or a divorce/custody decree. This evidence must be an original or certified copy. Note that some of this evidence may be used to show both citizenship and parentage.
3. Provide Parental Consent
The easiest way to provide consent is for both parents to accompany the child to the passport agency to apply for the passport. If only one parent has sole custody, then you must provide proof of this with either a birth certificate, court order, judicial decree, adoption decree, or death certificate. If one parent is unable to appear, you will need to complete form DS-3053 Statement of Consent. If one parent cannot be located, complete form DS-5525 Statement of Exigent/Special Family Circumstances. If neither parent can appear, provide a notarized statement from both parents giving a third party permission to apply on behalf of the parent(s).
4. Take the Child’s Passport Photo
Passport photos must meet very specific requirements. The basic requirements are as follows:
- It is in color, clear with high resolution, and with a full front view of your face.
- It is 2x2 inches in size. The image size measured from the bottom of your chin to the top of your head (including hair) should not be less than 1 inch, and not more than 1 3/8 inches.
- There may be no shadows on the face or background.
- It must be printed on photo quality paper with a plain light (white or off-white) background.
- It only includes yourself in normal attire (no costumes or uniforms) and with no other people.
Do not staple or attach the photo to the form before submitting it. See Photo Requirements for additional specifications.
5. Pay the Government Fees
You will be charged $80 for a child passport book, $15 for a child passport card, and $35 for an acceptance fee.
6. Submit and Track the Application Status
Child applicants must apply in person at a passport acceptance facility or passport agency. Applicants outside of the U.S. should contact their U.S. Embassy and Consulate for instructions on submitting their application.
Review the status of your application in your LegalNature account and contact your designated Passport Specialist with any questions. We will contact you with any updates or if there is a problem with your application.