Passport Renewal Forms for Children

To help protect children under the age of 16 from international child abduction, there are special rules governing the passport application process for them. The forms that are used for passport renewal for children are also different from the forms used for passport renewal for adults.

 

Child passports expire after just 5 years. Unlike adults, children must appear in person to renew their passports. They are not eligible for passport renewal by mail. Instead of using Form DS-82 like an adult would, children use Form DS-11, the same form an adult would use when applying for a passport for the first time. This form must be signed in person at a passport acceptance facility. Acceptance facilities are usually located in post offices and libraries; the Department of State’s website will show you the closest location.

 

You may sign the form for your child if your child is too young to do so, but do not sign it until the acceptance agent tells you to. Otherwise, you’ll have to redo the application form.

 

There are other passport-related forms that are specific to minors. Ideally, both parents will be at the passport office when the child applies, but for many busy families this is simply not practical. Both parents must give permission for a child to be issued a passport. If only one parent can attend, he or she must bring a notarized Form DS-3053 signed by the other parent.

 

Parents with sole custody of the child in question may provide proof that they have sole custody, such as a birth certificate with only their name on it, an adoption decree with only their name on it, evidence that the other parent is deceased or legally incompetent or a court order.

 

To apply for a passport for your child, you’ll also need government-issued photo ID for you, evidence of your relationship to the child (such as a birth certificate, adoption decree or court order awarding you custody) and proof of citizenship for the child.

These passport renewal requirements may seem onerous, but they help keep children from being abducted to other countries where it is difficult to retrieve them, whether by a parent in a custody dispute or a stranger.

 

Alison Kroulek is a freelance writer and blogger with a focus on the travel industry.

US Passport Renewal

Compared to getting a new passport, renewing an expiring passport is a relatively simple affair. However, since it’s not something you have to do often, it’s common to have questions about the process. When it comes to getting a US passport renewal, here are some of the most common questions people ask, along with clear, easy-to-understand answers.

 

When Should I Apply for My US Passport Renewal?

 

Passports issued to adults over the age of 16 are valid for 10 years. According to the State Department, the best time to renew your passport is about nine months before it expires. That may seem like overkill; after all, nine months is the better part of a year, and shouldn’t you get the ten years you paid for?

 

However, if you travel overseas with any frequency at all, it’s a good idea to follow the Department of State’s advice. Many countries won’t allow you to enter if your passport has less than 6 months to go before it expires, and applying for your US passport renewal nine months beforehand allows plenty of time to get the new passport issued before you start to run up against that six month limit.

 

Where Do I Renew My Passport?

 

Most people are eligible for US passport renewal by mail. You can renew by mail as long as all of the following statements are applicable to you:

 

Your current US passport is still in your possession and has not been lost or stolen.

Your current passport is in good condition.

Your current passport was issued after you turned 16.

It has been less than 15 years since the passport was issued.

If your name has changed since your last passport was issued, you are able to send legal documents that support your name change request.

What Documents Do I Need?

 

To apply for a passport renewal by mail, you’ll need to send the following documents to the Department of State:

 

A completed copy of renewal application form DS-82

Your current passport

One passport photo

Where applicable, legal documents such as a marriage certificate or a divorce decree to back up any name change requests.

Money to pay the fees.

 

How Much Will It Cost?

 

If you’re applying for only the standard passport book, you’ll pay an application fee of $ 110.

At just $ 30, the passport card may seem like a bargain, but keep in mind that you can’t use it for international air travel at all. It can only be used for land and sea travel to the following regions: Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. If you want both a passport book and a passport card, you’ll pay $ 140.

 

How Long Will it Take?

 

Processing times vary seasonally depending on the Department of State’s workload. However, it usually takes about 6 weeks for a US passport renewal request to be completed. You can apply for expedited service by paying a $ 60 expedite fee in addition to your application fee and writing “Expedite” on the envelope. Expedited applications are generally processed within three weeks. For emergency passport renewals, you can make an appointment at one of 25 regional passport agency offices across the country by calling 1-800-209-4565.

 

Alison Kroulek is a freelance writer and blogger with a focus on the travel industry.

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Emergency Passport Appointments

 

Travel experts recommend that you apply for your passport well in advance of a trip outside the country-months in advance, if possible. However, life doesn’t always go according to plan, and sometimes you need an emergency passport. If you need your passport to travel in 14 days or less, you can call 1-800-209-4565 make an appointment at the nearest Regional Passport Agency Office to have an emergency passport issued.

 

Of course, the appointment won’t do you any good if you show up without the appropriate documents and paperwork. Here’s what you’ll need to get inside and get your passport:

 

A copy of your travel itinerary showing that you’ve booked tickets to leave the country in the next 14 days. However, if you need your passport to apply for a travel visa, you can make an appointment and bring an itinerary showing that you plan to leave within 4 weeks instead.

The confirmation number for your appointment

All of the documents you need to get your new passport. If you are applying for a new passport, you’ll need proof of citizenship and proof of identity. See How to Apply for a New Passport for details.

If you’re applying for a passport renewal and you still have your old passport, in most cases you can use your old passport to prove both your identity and your citizenship.

See Passport Renewal for details on what you’ll need to renew your passport. Also, since you are making an appointment at a passport agency, you should not mail in your passport and the renewal application form. Bring both the form and your old passport with you to the appointment.

Whether you’re renewing your passport or applying for a new one, you’ll need to bring two passport photos with you to the appointment.

Regional Passport Agency offices are federal buildings. That means you may have to pass through a medical detector to enter and you must not attempt to bring any weapons.

Be on time-you won’t be allowed in more than 15 minutes before your appointment time or more than 15 minutes after.

 

Alison Kroulek is a freelance author and blogger with a focus on the travel industry.

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Expedited Passport Forms

When you are requesting an expedited passport, it’s important to be sure that you’re filling out all of the appropriate forms. After all, there’s really no time for a redo. Here’s a rundown of some of the different expedited passport forms that you might encounter:

 

Expedited Passport Form DS-11

 

Form DS-11 is an application for a new passport. It is used when you have not previously been issued a passport, or if your existing passport was issued when you were 16 or younger. You must submit form DS-11 in person at a passport acceptance facility or passport agency office, along with proof of identity, proof of citizenship, and 2 passport photos. Don’t sign the form until you are at the acceptance office and the acceptance agent tells you to.

 

Expedited Passport Form DS-82

 

Form DS-82 is for people who are eligible to renew their passport by mail. You are eligible for passport renewal by mail so long as your passport is undamaged and in your possession, was issued when you were 16 or older and is less than 15 years old, and you have documentation to support any name change requests. When you mail form DS-82, include your current passport, 2 new passport photos and documents to support any name changes. Don’t forget to sign the form before you send it!

 

Expedited Passport Form DS-64

 

Form DS-64 is used in conjunction with Form DS-11 to replace a lost or stolen passport.

This form requests that you provide information about the lost or stolen passport, the circumstances in which it was lost or stolen, and the efforts you made to get it back. This information goes into the Consular Lost or Stolen Passport system, and the passport will be flagged in case someone else tries to use it to get in or out of the country.

 

Authorization Letter

 

An authorization letter is used when you are applying for your passport through a private visa expediting company. The letter gives the company permission to meet with the Department of State on your behalf and submit your application.

 

Alison Kroulek is a freelance writer and blogger with a focus on the travel industry.