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Press Release

New Law Related to U.S. Passport Applications for Children under Age 14

Effective July 2, 2001, a new U.S. law will require that both parents sign passport applications for children under age fourteen. When only one parent is available to sign the application, that parent must provide to AIT, under penalty of perjury, documentary evidence demonstrating that she or he has sole legal custody of the child or has the written consent of the other parent to the issuance of the U.S. passport. Exceptions to this requirement may be made in special family circumstances or emergencies requiring the immediate travel of the child.

The purpose of the new U.S. requirement is to lessen the possibility that a U.S. passport might be used in the course of an international parental child abduction.

If you have any questions about this matter, please visit the AIT web-site at or call the AIT American Citizens Services Unit at 2709-2000, ext. 2306. If you are concerned that your child, regardless of age, could become the victim of an international parental child abduction, you should contact the American Citizens Services Unit at AIT or the Office of Children's Issues in the Bureau of Consular Affairs at (202) 663-2641.

Also effective July 2, 2001, in order to bring age requirements into alignment, the age at which a minor may execute his or her own passport application is being raised from 13 to 14 years.