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Consent for Children

What are the requirements for parents’ or guardians’ consent to passport applications for children under 18 years of age?

Section 7 of the application form deals with parental consent for children

Consent of parents or guardians

The consent of all guardians is required for all children under 18 years of age, unless the child is married. Guardianship should not be confused with custody which involves the day to day caring of the child.

This is an additional requirement for children. Everyone under the age of 18 must have the consent of their parents/guardians to get a passport and this consent must be witnessed.

Parents/guardians must:

  • Fill in and sign the relevant part of Section 7 of the passport application form in the presence of a witness. If consent of both parents is not available, please see list of options below.

The witness must:

  • Complete, sign and stamp Section 7, including a work landline phone number - mobile phone numbers will not be accepted
  • Sign each column separately if they witness both parents/guardians' signatures

Your consent witness can be a:

  • Police Officer
  • Member of clergy
  • Medical doctor
  • Lawyer
  • Bank manager/assistant bank manager
  • Elected public representative
  • Peace commissioner
  • School principal/vice principal
  • Accountant

Please note: Spanish Notary Publics are no longer accepted as witnesses for passport applications in Spain.

Consent of one parent is not available:

If one parent is unwilling or unavailable to give their consent for their child's passport to be issued, please check the following options:

Please contact us if your circumstances are not listed.

Parents are married or were married

Both parents may fill in and sign the relevant part of Section 7 in the presence of a suitable witness.

If one parent is unwilling or unavailable to give their consent for their child's passport to be issued, a court order dispensing with that parent’s consent will be required to proceed with the child's application. This Court Order should direct the Passport Service to dispense with the consent of the unwilling/unavailable parent and allow the Passport Service to issue a passport to your child.

Parents were married but one parent is deceased

The living parent may fill in and sign the relevant part of Section 7 in the presence of a suitable witness.

The original death certificate of the deceased parent together with a Sole Guardian Affidavit form (AFF1) must be submitted. This affidavit should be completed in the presence of a solicitor/commissioner for oaths confirming that the living parent is the sole legal guardian of the child. Print an AFF1 form

Only mother named on child's birth certificate

The mother of the child must fill in and sign the relevant part of Section 7 of the passport application form in the presence of a suitable witness.

She must also complete a sworn affidavit form (AFF1) in the presence of a solicitor/commissioner for oaths, confirming her as the sole legal guardian. Print an AFF1 form

Parents not married but both named on child’s birth certificate

Child born in Ireland:

Both parents may fill in and sign the relevant part of Section 7 in the presence of a suitable witness.

If the mother is the sole legal guardian of the child, she must complete a sworn affidavit form (AFF1) in the presence of a solicitor/commissioner for oaths. Print an AFF1 form

If the child's father has been granted guardianship rights from the courts, or both parents have completed a Statutory Declaration stating that the father has become a joint-guardian, then the consent of the father is required.

For more information on a Statutory Declaration, contact a solicitor or commissioner for oaths.

Child born in Northern Ireland or Great Britain:

If the child's father is named on the birth certificate and the birth was jointly registered by both parents, the father is deemed to have parental responsibility (guardianship) of his child, irrespective of the marital status of the parents.

This was passed into law on the following dates:

  • Northern Ireland: 15 April 2002
  • England and Wales: 1 December 2003
  • Scotland: 4 May 2006

Before this legislation, only the mother was considered an automatic guardian.

Born before legislation

If the child was born before the above dates and the mother is the sole legal guardian of the child, she must complete a sworn affidavit form (AFF1) in the presence of a solicitor/commissioner for oaths. Print an AFF1 form

Born after legislation

If the child was born in one of these countries after the above dates, both parents must fill in and sign the relevant part of Section 7 in the presence of a suitable witness.