Lost and stolen passports
By law, you must report the loss or theft of your passport to us as soon as possible. This will help to prevent criminal misuse of the document and protect your identity (see Passport fraud).
Your passport will be immediately and permanently cancelled. It cannot be reinstated and must not be used for travel should you find it later.
How to report a loss or theft
If you are in Australia, you can report a loss or theft by calling the Australian Passport Information Service (APIS) on 131 232 or by going into your nearest Australian Passport Office.
If overseas, you can report a loss or theft at an Australian diplomatic or consular mission.
If your passport has been stolen, you should also report the incident to the police and ensure that you obtain a copy of the police report – this applies in Australia and overseas.
See the Smartraveller website for more information.
If someone else finds your passport and returns it
If you lose control of your passport and it is found by someone else and returned to us, we will immediately and permanently cancel it. This is to protect against misuse of your passport - and your identity - by others.
Cancellation cannot be reversed.
Applying for a new passport after a loss or theft
When you apply for a new passport, you must provide full details of the loss or theft.
Unless we are satisfied that exceptional circumstances exist - that the loss or theft was outside your control and not due to your carelessness - repeated losses will result in reduced validity for your next passport:
- two losses in five years will result in your new document having a validity of five years
- three or more losses in five years will result in the issue of a document valid for a maximum of two years.
If you find the passport you reported lost or stolen
If you report your passport as lost or stolen but later find it, do not attempt to travel on it but instead present it to the Passport Office (or an Australian diplomatic or consular mission if you are overseas).
If you present it before, or when, you lodge a new application, the loss will not result in reduced validity for your next passport (see Applying for a new passport after a loss or theft).
If, after obtaining a new passport, you find a passport that you have previously reported as lost or stolen, you should still present it to us so that the loss will not result in reduced validity of any subsequent passports.
Passport lost or delayed in the mail
If you have requested your passport be sent to you via registered post to an address in Australia, it should arrive within six business days of receiving the email from the Passport Office advising that your passport is ready.
If after six business days your passport has not arrived, please call the Australian Passport Information Service (APIS) on 131 232 for assistance.