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consent of parent for passport at 16 years of age

by Julie
(North Wales, PA)

Question: Does my daughter need her father's consent to renew her passport? Does she need to apply in person and does he have to be with her? She is 16 years old. Her parents have never been married. She lives with her mother(me).

We are traveling to Costa Rica on June 23rd. She has her old passport which expired last May. We completed DS-11 and have passport pictures. I would like to apply for the expedited service. I would like to set up an appointment ASAP.

Since she is 16, I don't think she needs the statement of consent. Her parents do not live in the same area. Please advise. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Answer: Yes, your daughter needs to apply in person. Besides the completed Form DS-11 and passport photo, your daughter needs to present evidence of citizenship (most recent passport) and photo id (driver's license). She also needs to submit a photocopy of the identification document.

Concerning consent, the U.S. Department of State states that minors age 16 and 17 must "establish parental consent." They go on to state that written consent may be requested if it is not implied on the application.

There are two ways to expedite the passport. One, you can make an appointment at the Regional Passport Agency that serves the state where she resides. Note, the agency only attends to American citizens whose departure date is within two weeks. For more information, click the link below.

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Another way to get an expedited passport is to authorize a professional expediter to submit the application for your daughter. If you choose to use an expediting service, your daughter will still have to appear at a nearby passport application acceptance facility so that an authorized agent can take her oath and witness the signing of the application.

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Comments for consent of parent for passport at 16 years of age

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Legal/sole custody??
by: Anonymous

Question: Hello,I am a naturalized citizen. My daughter is 16 years old and is applying for a passport for the first time. One of the requirements is "documentation of legal/sole custody". I don't have that but she lives with me all her life, I was not married with her dad. What else can I submit in lieu of this document? Thank you?

Answer: At 16, your daughter may apply for her passport with only one parent's consent if she already has her own government-issued ID. Proof of sole legal custody is no longer a requirement in this case.

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UPDATE: Mailing delays and high demand are impacting passport processing. The Department of State's processing times begin when applications are received at a passport agency or center and not when you mail them or apply at a local acceptance facility.

Standard service may take between 10 and 13 weeks. This timeframe does not include delivery time. Mailing times vary across the country.

Expedited service takes from 7 to 9 weeks excluding mailing times on the front and back end. Current mailing delays are significant. Requesting 1-2-day mailing service is recommended.

Regional passport agencies are offering two types of appointments: Life-of-Death Emergency Service and Urgent Travel Service.

Life-or-death emergencies are serious illnesses, injuries, or deaths in your immediate family (parent, legal guardian, child, spouse, sibling, and grandparent) that require you to travel outside the United States within 3 business days.

If you need to travel due to a qualified life-or-death emergency, please call the National Passport Information Center for an appointment.

For Urgent Travel Service, you need to call 14 days before your scheduled international travel or 28 days if you also need to secure a foreign visa.

If you need to travel urgently for reasons other than a life-or-death emergency, please call the NPIC.

A registered expedited passport courier can often assist in obtaining a passport as quickly as the same day. You can learn more about this service here.

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