If you are traveling to a foreign country, you are required by law to carry a passport. Parents need to ensure that they get passports made for their children, if they too are traveling abroad. This write-up provides information on what needs to be done while applying for a passport for an infant.
If you are planning to visit a foreign country, one thing that you need the most is your passport. A passport is a very important legal document that not only allows you to travel abroad, but also corroborates your identity as a citizen of a particular country. If you have planned a family vacation, then make sure that each family member has a passport and that too a valid one. Those who don’t have a passport yet, will need certain documents to prove their nationality and other personal details for getting a passport for the first time. The same applies for getting a passport for a newborn as well. While applying for a passport for an infant, the parents or the legal guardians and the baby need to be physically present at the designated passport application acceptance facilities.
Getting a Passport for a Newborn
First, you need to get a passport application form from the designated passport agency. This form is referred to as Form DS-11. You will need to fill in the legal name of the child and other details. Be careful while filling up the form, if you make mistakes, the application will be rejected. Here’s all you need to know while applying for a passport for a baby.
You will need two 2×2 inches passport-sized photographs of your baby. Make sure that the photographs show the baby’s full face and shoulders. It must be a front view and the background must be plain white or off-white. Make sure that your baby is not wearing any cap or headgear when the picture is clicked. Having a newborn photographed is surely not easy. So, make sure that you get it done at a photo studio. Ask them if they have prior experience in clicking pictures for passport application. Both the pictures must be identical and taken recently.
Besides the photographs, you also need to submit the proof of United States citizenship. This can be done by submitting the certificate of citizenship or the certified U.S. birth certificate of your baby. You should also take the baby’s social security card. Besides these documents, you also need to submit proofs for your identity as well. You can use your valid passport, driver’s license, or any identity proof that has been issued by the government. Evidence must be given to establish the relationship of the parents with the baby. The birth certificate bearing the names of the parents can be used for this purpose. Court orders bearing the name of parents can also be submitted for establishing the relationship between you and your child. If you have adopted the child, you can submit the adoption decree bearing the name of the adoptive parents.
Single parents must submit court orders or any proof that establishes their sole custody. If any of the parents changed their name after these documents were issued, make sure that you submit a legal document stating that name change. The parents also need to provide their consent for authorizing passport issuance. For this, they must sign on Form DS-11 in the presence of the U.S. passport agent. Sign only when the agent tells you to do so. In case, only one parent would be appearing with the baby, getting a notarized Statement of Consent Form DS-3053 from the other parent will suffice. Besides submitting these photographs and documents along with the accurately-filled application form, you will also need to pay the passport processing fees. For children under the age of 16 years, you will need to pay USD 80 as passport processing fee.
If you are planning to apply for a passport for your baby, make sure that you fill up the form correctly and fulfill the aforementioned requirements. If everything is in order, you can get your baby’s passport in 4-6 weeks. So, avoid processing delays or rejection of the form by taking care of the minutest details. While traveling abroad, make sure that your passport is still valid. If it’s not, then you can renew the passport at post office or other authorized passport agencies. Since a minor’s passport is valid for only five years from the date of issue, make sure that you renew the passport on time.