Applying for your Child's First British Passport?
If you want to apply for your children’s first passport, you will need to provide the UK Home Office with certain information and documentation.
Applying for your child’s first British passport is an exciting moment, but it is not without its stresses.
In this guide we will help to ease some of your stress with a full guide on the documents which you will need to include in your child’s passport application, as well as the application process itself.
What Do I Need to Know About Applying for my Child’s First Passport
Firstly, how do you apply for a passport for your child?
A person with parental responsibility for the child must be the one applying for baby’s first passport. They will need to give the details of both parents when they apply. If this information cannot be provided, the person must explain why.
You will need to prove that your child is entitled to British nationality. In typical circumstances, a baby’s entitlement to a passport is through one of their parents being a British citizen or person with Indefinite Leave to Remain.
You can apply for a passport both online or by post. If you want to apply by post, you should be able to collect a paper form from the Post Office, or you can phone the Passport Adviceline to request for a form to be sent to you by post.
It is cheaper to apply online for the passport, at a cost of £49. Paper applications cost £58.50. The processing time for an online application is typically up to three weeks, whereas a paper application will take longer.
The person with parental responsibility must sign the application form. If the child is between 12 and 15, both the child and the adult need to sign the form.
From birth, your child will need a passport any time you leave the UK. A child’s passport is valid for five years.
Getting Your Application Verified
As part of the application process, someone who you know must agree to confirm the identity of the child applicant. This is also true for passport renewals made for those who are 11 or under.
This person is known as a countersignatory. A countersignatory is someone who can confirm the identity of the adult and the child and confirm that to the best of their knowledge, all information in the application is correct.
The countersignatory must confirm that they have known the adult who is completing the application for at least two years and that this person has parental responsibility for the child. They must also state that the child’s photo is a true likeness.
The consignatory must:
- Live in the UK
- Hold a British or Irish passport
- The person must be a ‘professional person’
- Not be related to the adult
- Not be in a relationship with the adult
- Not live at your address
- Not work for HM Passport Office
With online applications, the consignatory will receive an email from HM Passport Office with further instructions. For paper applications, the consignatory will need to sign the back of one of the photographs of the child.
What Documents Do I Need for my Child First British Passport?
You will need to send original documents for the application or official copies of certificates. Photocopies, even if they are verified, will not be accepted.
Any documents which are not in English or Welsh must be translated by an accredited translator. You will need to submit both the certified translated documents as well as the originals.
Also, laminated documents will not be accepted.
You will need to provide the following documentation in standard applications:
- Two new identical passport-sized photographs of the child
- The child’s birth or adoption certificate (with parents’ details on it)
- Proof that the child has British nationality. This could be a British registration certificate, parent’s birth certificate or parent’s passport details
- Valid passports from a different country belonging to the child
- Any court orders describing parental responsibility or residency arrangements
Bear in mind that this is the standard required documentation for paper applications. In all likelihood, you will need to provide the same documentation for online applications. That being said, you will be notified of what documentation you need to provide when you complete your online application.
Also, it is important to note that if a child has been adopted or was born through surrogacy, additional documentation will be required.
You can choose to have your documents sent back by post. Alternatively, you can pay an extra £5 to get them sent by secure delivery.
Your new passport will be sent to you by a courier or through Royal Mail.
What are the Requirements for the Photos?
When you apply for your child’s passport, you will need to provide two passport-sized identical photographs. The photos must be 45mm high and 35mm wide and the photos cannot be cut from a larger picture.
For an online application, you will need to provide digital photos. These photos must be clear, unedited and at least 750 pixels high and 600 pixels wide. Also, the photos must be at least 50KB and no larger than 10MB.
For an application made for a baby, it is important to keep the following points in mind concerning the photographs:
- They must be facing upwards
- They must have their eyes open and visible. (Babies who are under 1 do not need to have their eyes open)
- Must not have anything covering their face
It is possible for you to support your child’s head with your hand, but your hand cannot be visible.
Children's First Passport Application Processing Time
Applying for your child’s first UK passport can take up to 10 weeks to be certified. Be sure to allow ample processing time, especially during busy periods like holidays.
If you require your child’s passport in under 10 weeks, you can opt for a fast track service. Bear in mind turnaround times for your child’s passport may differ depending on what country you are applying from.
How Birmingham Immigration Lawyers Can Help
Birmingham Immigration Lawyers is here to provide you with all the support which you may need. Our immigration lawyers can help you apply for a child passport with our application package.
We will advise you on the documentation which you will need to provide in the application and help you to source it. We will ensure that it all adheres necessary Home Office administrative standards too.
With our professional support, you can ensure that you get your application for your child’s passport right the first time.
For more information, please do not hesitate to give us a call on 0121 667 6530.
Frequently Asked Questions
Not necessarily. If a parent is a single parent and does not have access to the other parents signature, then one parent who has legal responsibility and guardianship over the child can sign the passport.
A single parent with parental responsibility can apply for their child’s passport.
All children’s passports are valid for 5 years up until they reach the age of 15.
The official documentation that you will need is as follows:
- An official birth or adoption certificate for the child
- The parent’s passports or marriage certificate
- 2 new passport sized photographs of your child
- Proof that the child has British nationality
- A referee to confirm your child’s identity
- Any other valid passports from other nationalities that have been issued to the child