If you know anyone who has applied for a passport for their child and you asked them how the process was, you will likely hear that it was quite cumbersome and frustrating. This is because the Department of State places certain restrictions in place to reduce the risk of child trafficking. So with all these restrictions in place, how do you get a quick US passport renewal child as quickly as possible?
If you have an upcoming trip and wish to take your child with you, what options do you have to travel with your child? Let’s review the options available to parents and guardians.
Can A Child Renew Their Passport?
This is an all-important question to ask because it is the starting point for any application process. The truth is that children do not qualify for passport renewals because they are minors. US law forbids the renewal of passports for children under 16. So if your child is under 16, you cannot renew their passport. What you can do is apply for a new passport from scratch.
How Soon Can You Get Your Child’s Passport?
The second question you may ask is how soon you can get the passport for your child after submitting your application. The answer to this question varies.
You can get the passport in a few days or wait for several weeks to get it. If you apply for a normal service, the process may take up to 6-8 weeks, but this may be too long if your trip should happen before then.
Apply For An Expedited Service
The other option open to you as a parent to speed up the process is to apply for expedited service. This service is available for emergency situations where the child needs to travel with the parent at short notice. You simply have to apply to the passport office in your city for expedited service. If your request is granted, you may get the new passport in 1-5 days, depending on the situation. However, the onus is on you to prove to the official in charge that your situation is indeed an emergency and that the child must travel with you.
Types of Emergency Applications
There are two types of emergencies accepted by the passport agency for expedited servicing. They are
Life-or-Death Emergency: This is a situation where there is a serious illness, injury, or death to an immediate family member like a parent, sibling, guardian, or grandparent. For life or death situations, the State Department mandates passport facilities to prepare the passport within three business days. However, you must book an appointment with the agency in advance.
Urgent Travel: If the parents must travel with the child for an urgent matter in the next 14-28 days, they can order for an expedited service for urgent travel. This process takes about 3-6 weeks.
So you need to evaluate the situation and know which of the two options is best for your family. But note that the burden will be on you to prove your need is valid.
Conditions For Child Passport Applications
The US government is strict when it comes to passport applications for children due to the rising wave of trafficking. So these conditions are placed to protect children. Here are the conditions.
Present: The child must be present for the application process and vetting. As a parent, you cannot apply for a passport for your child if the child is absent.
26 Locations: There are only 26 locations available in the US to apply for child passports. You must track the nearest agency close to you and place a call to book an appointment.
Proof of Identity: You must prove that the child is yours and are an American citizen using special documents.
Consent: If one parent is unavailable, you must issue a consent form authorizing the State Department to issue the passport to the child.
Documents For Child Passport Application
Proof of Citizenship: The parents and the child must prove their citizenship using their birth certificate, parent's passport, or certificate of naturalization.
DS-11 Form: A DS-11 form for new passport applications must be filled out in black ink and block letters. Or using a wizard to fill it out online. It should only be signed in the presence of the passport officer at the agency.
Certificate of Consent: If one parent is absent, they must sign a certificate of consent in the presence of a notary authorizing the agency to issue a passport to the child.
Death Situation: In the case of the death of one parent, the parent applying for a child must present a death certificate.
If you want a quick US passport renewal child opts for an expedited service.