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Passports for Minors

In order to help prevent fraud and deter international abductions, there are several differences between U.S. passports for adults and U.S. passports for minors. U.S. passports for minors are generally valid for five years only.  Please read through the information below for additional requirements for passports for minors.

Two-Parent Signature Rule

In order to prevent fraud and deter international abductions, all minor passports require both parents to appear in person and sign the application in front of the consular officer, unless one of the following exceptions applies:

  • Only one parent is named on the birth certificate or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA), and presents that birth certificate or CRBA;
  • Applying parent has sole legal custody as decided by a court of competent jurisdiction, and presents those original custody papers;
  • Applying parent presents death certificate of deceased parent;
  • Applying parent presents signed and notarized authorization, such as DS-3053 along with a copy of the front and back of the authorizing parent's ID;
  • Applying parent has a signed and notarized power of attorney specifically including ability to apply for travel documents, and presents that document;
  • Special or exigent family circumstances.

In addition to both parents, the minor applicant for the U.S. passport must appear in person.  Evidence of parental relationship will also need to be established by presenting a birth certificate.

Age-Progression Photos

When a U.S. passport is being renewed, the consular officer must ensure that the person appearing at the Embassy is the same person that is in the photograph in the expired U.S. passport. As a minor's appearance can change drastically in the five years between passport applications, the consular officer may ask that you provide age progression photos.  Age progression photos are pictures of the applicant for every year since the last passport issuance.

While not every case requires age progression photos, we recommend you bring such photos with you to the initial interview. If the consular officer determines that such photos are necessary, it may delay the application if you do not have them on hand.