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Children's passports

 

This information is about children’s passports only. For more information about adult passports go to the Australian Government Passport Service

Can my child apply for their own passport?

No, a parent or other person with parental responsibility for a child must apply for a child’s passport. A child is defined as an Australian citizen under 18 years of age who has never married.

Can my child travel on my passport?

Children cannot be included on an adult's passport. Each child, including a newborn infant, must be issued with their own passport.

What do I have to do to get a passport for my child?

Before a passport may be issued to a child, the written consent of all people with parental responsibility for the child is needed (both parents must agree to and sign the application form for a passport).

If a child is in the care of the Department for Child Protection, the CEO of the Department can consent to a passport being issued for the child.

For more information about getting a child’s passport go to the Australian Government Passport Service.

How do I get consent?

You should contact the other party and ask them to give written consent for a passport to be issued for your child. If you are not comfortable speaking to the other party you could write them a letter. You should let them know the reason why you want your child to have a passport. If you are intending to travel overseas you should clearly set out the proposed dates of travel. Your letter should be sent by registered mail and the signed postal receipt kept. You should keep copies of all letters you send to the other party.

Do I have to try and negotiate an agreement with the other party?

The court requires that you make a genuine attempt to reach an agreement before asking the court to make orders. Making an agreement outside of court also saves you money, time and the emotional stress of a court case. Where there has been family violence or child abuse, or there is a risk of one or both of these you may not have to attend compulsory family dispute resolution before applying to the court, as you might fall into one of the exceptions. You should get legal advice on your particular situation to see if you fall into one of the exceptions

What if the other party will not give consent? What if I cannot find the other party to get consent? What if the other party is deceased?

There are exceptions to getting the written consent of all persons with parental responsibility for the child. The Passports Office can decide to issue a passport with one signature only if “special circumstances” exist. For more information refer to the Australian Government Passport Service webpage Children and parental consent or the brochure Children and parental consent

If the father's name is not on the birth certificate does he have to consent? 

In most cases people with parental responsibility are the natural parents named on the child's birth certificate, and parental responsibility can only be removed by an Australian court. However, where the father is not named on a child's birth certificate but has formaly acknowledged paternity by signing a document to this effect, he has parental responsibility for the purposes of the Australian Passports Act 2005 and is required to provide consent prior to issue of a passport.

What if I cannot get an exemption from the passports Office?

If the other party refuses to give their consent and you do not fall under an exemption from the passports office you can ask the Family Court to make an order allowing you to get a passport for your child. Generally counselling and mediation should be attempted before applying to the court. If this applies to you, get legal advice.

What can I do to stop the other party applying for a passport for my child?

If the other party requests your written consent for a passport to be issued for your child and you do not want a passport issued you should write to them explaining the reasons why you do not want your child to have a passport. Your letter should be sent by registered mail and the signed postal receipt kept. You should keep copies of all letters you send to the other party.

If you cannot agree you may be asked to attend mediation. The court requires that you make a genuine attempt to reach an agreement before asking the court to make orders.

If you still cannot agree the other party can apply to the Family Court for an order that a passport be issued for your child without your consent. If this applies to you get legal advice.

What can I do to stop the other party applying for a fake passport?

If your child DOES NOT have a passport, but you think there is a risk that your ex could get a fake passport you can apply for a child stop alert. A child stop alert will ensure that you are notified if someone tries to get a passport for your child. Further information on child stop alerts and application forms are available from the Australian Government Passports Service website. If you receive notification that someone has tried to get a passport for your child, you should seek immediate legal advice about your options.

Where do I apply for a passport?

An application for a passport can be made at most Australian Post Offices. You can also apply for a passport online from the Australian Government Passports Service website or ring the Australian Passports Information Service on 131 232 to make an appointment.

How much will it cost?

For more information about the costs of making a passport application refer to the Australian Government Passport Service list of fees.

My child’s passport has expired, can I renew it?

No, a renewal form cannot be used to apply for a child's passport. A new application must be lodged on each occasion.

How long is my child’s passport valid for?

Children's passports are normally valid for five years.

Where can I get more Information?

Last reviewed: 01/09/2010

Last Modified: 04/07/2011

Disclaimer

The material displayed on this page is intended for information only. If you have a legal problem, you should see a lawyer. Legal Aid Western Australia believes that the information provided is accurate, however does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions.