A child is defined in the Australian Passports Act 2005 as a person under 18 years of age who has never married.
Children cannot be included in an adult’s passport. All children, including babies, must travel on their own passport.
Passports for children are normally valid for five years. From 1 January 2016, child applicants aged 16 or 17 will be issued with 10-year passports. Each time a child needs a new passport, a full application must be completed:
- for an Australian Passport – Child (PC4) form, if the child is in Australia
- Application for an Australian Passport – Overseas (PC8) form, if the child is overseas
Each child passport application must be supported by original documents to prove the child’s identity and citizenship, and consent must be given by all persons with parental responsibility for the child. Two identical photographs of the child must be provided, and one of these must be endorsed by a guarantor.
A child’s passport application must be lodged by a parent or another person with parental responsibility for the child. The person who is lodging the application must show proof of their own identity which includes a photograph, signature and residential address. From 1 January 2016, child applicants aged 16 or 17 must accompany their parent to lodge an application. Children under 16 do not have to do so.
Before lodging your child’s application, use the Child application checklist to make sure you have everything that will be required.
If you have concerns about a child for whom you have parental responsibility being issued with a passport, see Child Alert requests.
Taking your child overseas without the consent of the other parent may be a criminal offence. See child abduction.
Changes to Australian citizenship laws that came into effect on 20 August 1986 mean that all persons born in Australia on or after that date need to provide documentation to prove their citizenship.
As well as any previous passport the child has had, you must provide the child’s full original birth certificate. Birth extracts, commemorative certificates, photocopies, certified copies or facsimile copies are not acceptable. If the child has a foreign language birth certificate, you must provide a translation prepared by an approved translation service, and an Australian citizenship certificate. If the child was born overseas and has no birth certificate, you must complete Form B6 (pdf) to explain why a birth certificate cannot be obtained.
A child’s passport is issued in the name recorded on their birth or citizenship certificate, unless a different name has been formally registered with an Australian Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages or a foreign equivalent authority and you can provide an original change of name certificate or a revised birth certificate. Foreign certificates must be legalised by the issuing government – contact the diplomatic or consular representatives of that country in Australia for information about their notarial services.
Anglicised names are not acceptable without a formal change of name certificate.
If the child’s parents’ current names differ from those shown on the child’s birth certificate, documents that explain the difference must be presented.
A child’s passport application should include the written consent of each person who has parental responsibility for the child, or an Australian court order permitting the child to travel internationally.
For the purpose of obtaining a passport, parental responsibility is defined in section 11(5) of the Australian Passports Act 2005.
Generally, people with parental responsibility are the parents named on the child’s full birth certificate; their parental responsibility can only be removed by an Australian court. In some cases, other people or entities (such as welfare agencies) are considered to have parental responsibility.
If persons with parental responsibility are in different locations when the child’s passport application is lodged, the non-lodging parent can provide written consent through a passport office in Australia or an Australian diplomatic or consular mission overseas.
Each person’s consent must be witnessed as per the instructions on the application form. The witness cannot be related to the child by birth or marriage, or be in a de facto relationship with either of the child’s parents, or live at the same address. A different person may witness the signature of each person giving consent. The child’s guarantor may witness the consent.
If you are unable to obtain the consent of all persons with parental responsibility for your child, you can request that the child’s passport application be considered under the special circumstances provisions in passports legislation.
Child passport applications that do not include full consent take longer to process and normal turnaround times do not apply. Priority service cannot be provided until the application has been assessed and approved for passport issue. As there is no guarantee the application will be successful, it is advisable not to make firm overseas travel plans until you know whether a passport will be issued.
If Australian court orders exist relating to your child, you must complete Form B7 (No further court orders) (pdf) and provide all original court orders with the child’s passport application.
If the child’s birth certificate names only the child’s mother, you must complete Form B8 (Mother’s name only on birth certificate) (pdf).
If the child is subject to a state or territory court order that grants parental responsibility or guardianship to one parent or to a person who is not a parent, you must complete Form B10 (Child subject to a state/territory child welfare law) (pdf). Child welfare or protective agencies lodging child passport applications should refer to the Guide for lodging child passport applications (pdf).
For a child who entered Australia as an unaccompanied humanitarian minor (UHM), you must complete Form B3 (Child under the Guardianship of the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection) (pdf). Guardians lodging child passport applications for children in their care should refer to the guide Lodging Australian Travel Document Applications for Unaccompanied Humanitarian Minors (pdf).
If your child is the subject of foreign court orders, see Foreign court orders.
If you are applying for a passport for a child adopted from overseas, see Intercountry adoption.
If you are applying for a passport for a child born through surrogacy, see surrogacy.