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I did not provide legal consent for my daughter's passport?

by Gary
(Poultney, VT)

Question: My daughter lives with her mother in Wachula, FL. I recently learned that she has a passport and has been out of the country without my legal permission? How do I find out about this?


Answer: Passports for minors age 15 or younger require the consent of both parents unless one parent has sole legal custody. If your wife has sole legal custody, then your consent would not be necessary.

Minors ages 16 and 17 can apply without the presence of their parents. Parental consent may or may not be requested.

You can apply for a passport record for your daughter. The fee is $50 and it takes up to six weeks to process. The record does not include proof of travel. It only includes information concerning the application and supporting documents that were submitted in order to obtain the passport. For more information, click the link below.

How to Get a Passport Record

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May my ex wife renew my 5 year old daughter's passport without my consent?

by Dennis
(Rock Island, Illinois, United States)

Question: My ex wife is an active duty military member and is currently stationed at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. I am a separated military member living in Illinois.

She has been contacting me about signing a document so she may renew my daughter's passport. She has not allowed me to see my daughter in almost 2 years despite the fact I have a court ordered custody agreement stating we share custody of the child. She has used the fact that she is stationed in Guam, several thousand miles away and overseas to her advantage in keeping my daughter from me. Although she does allow me to call and speak with her whenever I want, she will not share the custody with me as ordered.

I have not the money to fight this battle at this time. I do not want to sign this document because I'm fearful she may transition somewhere else and I will not know how to find her. She will not tell me where she is going. Please help me in whatever way you can....

Answer: The short answer is maybe. The U.S. Department of State Passport Services requires both parents to appear in order to get a passport for a minor age 15 or under.

In cases where only one parent appears, the applying parent must submit either notarized consent from the non-applying parent or proof of sole legal custody.

If your ex wife cannot get your consent and does not have sole legal custody, she could submit a request for a court order allowing her to get a passport for your daughter. Since she is active duty military, it is possible that such a request would be granted if she is being transitioned to another location.

One thing you can do is enter your daughter's name in the Children's Passport Issuance Alert Program. If your an passport application is submitted for your child, then you will receive notice of this.

For more information, click the link below.

Children's Passport Issuance Alert Program

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How can I check if my ex-wife got a passport for my child without my consent and how can I revoke it?

Question: My daughter's mother has taken my daughter to Paris on several occasions and I am wondering how she obtained a passport if i never signed any paperwork. She never put me on my child's birth certificate but the question of her being mine was never an issue. I am working to have that fixed but with no cooperation from her.

Answer: If you are not listed on the birth certificate, then the mother has sole legal custody. According do the requirements established by the U.S. government, one parent can apply for and obtain a passport for a minor as long as he or she can prove sole legal custody. One way to do this is to present a birth certificate that only lists the father or mother on it and not both.

The only way that your consent would be required is if you had shared legal custody. If you want to pursue this, you need to consult your lawyer.

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What can be done if you suspect that your ex-spouse obtained a passport without proper consent or documentation?

by Steve
(Denver, CO)

Question: My ex-wife obtained a passport for my 13-year old son and I did not give her any type of approval. I am listed on the birth certificate and she does not have "sole legal" custody spelled out in the divorce decree. Thus, I am not sure how she could have gotten this passport and what can I do to find out how she was able to get a passport?

What are the requirements to have "sole legal" custody? The court order specifically states that I must be informed of my children's whereabouts at all times thus, I can't see how she would qualify for sole legal custody. The court order states that she has "permanent care, custody and control of the minor children subject to visitation" and that I have "the right to be consulted on the minor children's care, guidance, maintenance, medical care, education, religion, supervision and rearing." Nowhere does it say "sole legal" custody. What should I do?

Answer: I recommend you contact a lawyer who can explain the implications of your divorce decree in relation to the custody of your children.

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