How to Apply for U.S. Passport for Newborn
Traveling outside the United States with a newborn or young child requires a personal U.S. passport for each individual, regardless of age. Applying for a U.S. passport for a newborn follows the same process as applying for a minor child under the age of 16. Passports issued to infants and children under 16 are valid for a period of five years.
To obtain a U.S. passport for a newborn child, parents must submit the application in person at a designated passport office or an authorized location. The following steps outline the process for applying for a U.S. passport for a newborn:
Step 1: Fill out Form DS-11
Download Form DS-11, the application for a U.S. passport, from the USCIS website. The newborn child must be present during the application process, and the parents or legal guardian must provide the child's legal name, social security number, and other personal details on the form. Include any required supporting documentation with the application, but do not sign the form unless instructed to do so.
Step 2: Present Proof of U.S. Citizenship
Acceptable documents to prove U.S. citizenship include:
- Certified birth certificate issued by the city, county, or state
- Consular report of an American birth abroad
- Previous U.S. passport
- Naturalization certificate
- Certificate of citizenship
- If the child was born in the United States and has nonimmigrant status (e.g., H1/H4 visa, L1/L2 visa), it is advisable to bring the certified birth certificate obtained at the time of birth. Hospitals usually assist parents in applying for a Social Security number and birth certificate immediately after a child's birth.
Step 3: Provide Proof of Relationship to the Child
Original copies of documents that establish the parents' relationship to the newborn child must be presented.
Acceptable proof of relationship includes:
- Certified birth certificate with the names of both parents
- Certified foreign birth certificate with both parents' names (if born overseas)
- Birth report with both parents' names (if born overseas)
- Adoption decree with parents' names (for adopted children)
- Court determination of custody or guardianship (for legal guardians)
- If a parent or guardian's name has changed since the original documents were issued, additional evidence such as a marriage certificate should be provided. If only one parent can be present during the application, Form DS-3053, "Statement of Consent," must be submitted along with the application.
Step 4: Parental Identification Documents
When applying for a newborn's passport, the parents must provide identification.
Acceptable forms of identification include:
- Valid driver's license
- Naturalization certificate
- Current U.S. passport
- Military or government identification
- If the parents do not have any primary forms of identification, secondary identification such as a social security card, credit card, employee ID, or library card may be used. An identifying witness can also vouch for the parent's identity if certain criteria are met. A completed Form DS-71, "Affidavit of Identifying Witness," must be submitted in this case.
Step 5: One or Both Parents Not Present
If only one parent can be present during the application process, the following requirements must be met:
- The parent present must appear in person with the child and sign Form DS-11.
- The second parent must provide a notarized Statement of Consent (Form DS-3053).
- In cases where both parents are unable to be present, additional documentation and notarized statements or affidavits may be required.
Step 6: Provide Passport Photos and
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1. Do newborn babies require a U.S. passport to travel internationally?
Yes, regardless of age, all individuals traveling outside the U.S. must have a personal U.S. passport. This includes newborn babies and small children.
2. What is the process for applying for a U.S. passport for a newborn child?
The process for applying for a U.S. passport for a newborn child is the same as for a minor child under 16. The parents must submit the passport application in person at a passport office or an authorized location. The application involves filling out Form DS-11, providing proof of citizenship, establishing the parent's relationship to the child, and presenting identification documents.
3. What documents are required as proof of citizenship for a newborn's U.S. passport application?
Acceptable documents as evidence of citizenship include a certified birth certificate from the city, county, or state; a consular report of an American birth abroad; a previous U.S. passport; a naturalization certificate; or a certificate of citizenship.
4. What documents are required to establish the parent's relationship to the child?
To establish the parent's relationship to the newborn child, a certified birth certificate with both parents' names is ideal. If the child was born overseas, a certified foreign birth certificate or a child's birth report with both parents' names can be submitted. If the child is adopted, an adoption decree with the parents' names should be provided. Guardians must present a custody determination by court order or a court decree establishing guardianship.
5. Can only one parent apply for a U.S. passport for a newborn child?
In some cases, only one parent needs to be present to apply for a U.S. passport for a newborn child. However, specific requirements must be met, such as signing Form DS-11 in the presence of an Acceptance Agent and providing the second parent's notarized Statement of Consent (Form DS-3053).
6. How long does it take to process a newborn's U.S. passport application?
The processing time for a newborn's U.S. passport application is typically 4 to 6 weeks. Expedited processing is available at an additional cost, with processing times of 3 weeks or 8 business days when done at a Passport Agency.