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Parental Consent for Minors

Children under age 16 cannot apply for a passport by themselves. Both parents/guardians must authorize the issuance of the child’s passport. The best way to do this is for both parents/guardians to go with the child in person to apply for the passport.

What if both parents/guardians cannot appear in person?

If… Then…

You have sole legal authority

You must submit evidence of this with the application. Examples include:

  • Complete court order granting you sole legal custody of the child, such as a divorce decree or other custody order
  • Complete court order specifically permitting you to apply for your child’s passport
  • Certified copy of the child’s birth certificate listing you as the only parent
  • Certified copy of an adoption decree listing you as the only parent
  • Certified copy of the judicial declaration of incompetence of the parent that cannot appear in person
  • Certified copy of the death certificate of the parent that cannot appear in person (e.g. Japanese Family Register showing the death of the non-applying parent)
  • Japanese Family Register showing divorce and name of custodial parent

Foreign documents must be accompanied by English translations.

One parent is unable to appear

If one parent/guardian cannot go with the child to apply for the passport, they can give permission by completing Form DS-3053 “Statement of Consent.” You must submit the completed form with the child’s passport application. The parent that cannot go with the child must:

    • Sign and date Form DS-3053 in the presence of a certified notary public, and
    • Submit a photocopy of the front and back side of the ID that they present to the notary public with Form DS-3053.

Photocopies or scanned copies are not acceptable. The form must be less than three months old.

Please note:  In Japan, a DS-3053 notarized by a Japanese notary public is acceptable.

You cannot locate the other parent, or other exigent circumstances apply

You must submit Form DS-5525 “Statement of Exigent/Special Family Circumstances.”

  • Please complete the form with as much detail as possible.
  • We may ask for additional information (e.g., custody order, incarceration order, restraining order) to protect against international parental child abduction.

Neither parent able to appear

A third party may apply for the child’s passport with a Form DS-3053 “Statement of Consent” from each parent.  Each parent/guardian must notarize a Form DS-3053 and give the third party permission to apply for the child.

  • The statement must include a photocopy of the parents/guardians’ identification.
  • When the statement is from only one parent/guardian, the third party must present evidence of sole custody of the consenting parent/guardian.