How to Renew Expired Passports for Children

Children may wonder, “How do I renew my passport?” if it has recently expired. This question is especially common for petitioners and their parents or guardians who wish to renew an expired passport for their dependents for an upcoming trip. One of the first pieces of information that applicants need to learn about this process is that, technically, they are unable to renew minors’ passports. Regardless of how many times children have applied for passports in the past, they must apply for new identification documents each time their current cards and books are set to expire. However, the following sections refer to child applicants who have previously received documents as passport renewal applicants. This helps to differentiate between child applicants who have never received passports in the past and those who have.

In any case, child passport applicants need to remember that there are specific requirements and procedures they must meet and complete to obtain these documents. The information below outlines these requirements, while also providing an explanation of which steps the applicants need to complete and which ones their parents or guardians need to fulfill. Traveling can be a stressful time, but applicants who learn how to apply for a child passport before they start submitting their materials can streamline this process and obtain their documents with ease.

How old do you have to be to get a passport for children?

Whether petitioners are wondering how to renew a US passport for children or they are applying for the first time, there are some age requirements these candidates must meet. Specifically, candidates must know that they may only receive these documents if they are younger than 16 years of age. It is important that applicants understand this age requirement so that they apply for a passport that corresponds with the correct age bracket. Furthermore, child candidates’ parents or guardians need to be aware of this age requirement as well. There are certain requirements that are placed on children’s caregivers when these minors apply for passports, and the adults may need to be present when their children apply for a passport.

Passport Renewal Forms for Children

Since there are no specific passport renewal forms that minors need to fill out to obtain their passport books or cards, they are required to use different forms when they apply for documentation. When children are younger than 16 years of age, they are required to use Form DS-11 to apply for passports. This is true even if the candidates have previously possessed a passport card or book. This form is also what applicants need to use if they are first-time adult applicants.

Child passport applicants can obtain copies of this document online. DS-11 is available in PDF format or by using an interactive form that allows petitioners to edit the documents by typing their answers into the appropriate fields. Furthermore, applicants should be prepared to submit the following information when they apply for a passport using this document:

  • Full legal name: Applicants must identify themselves using the names that are provided on their legal documents, such as birth certificates.
  • Contact information: When petitioners apply for a child passport, they need to provide their mailing addresses, phone numbers and emails.
  • Personal information: Candidates are required to provide the U.S. Department of State with various personal information, such as their birth dates, the name of the cities they were born in and their Social Security Numbers (SSNs). Additionally, petitioners must also report their height, hair color and eye color.
  • Parental information: Applicants must also be prepared to submit information about their parents or guardians, such as their full names, contact information, birth dates and SSNs.

What documents do I need to bring to renew US passport documents?

When children apply for a US passport, there are various documents they need to submit along with their completed Form DS-11. These verification materials help government employees to ensure that applicants are qualified to receive these federal identification documents. Generally, child passport applicants should expect to submit the following documents alongside their applications:

  • Original photo identification document and a copy
  • Original proof of citizenship document and a copy
  • A suitable passport photo that meets federal requirements
  • A signed parental consent form

Children who are younger than 16 years of age also need to have their parents present to sign the passport application form they submit. Furthermore, these adults may also be expected to provide proof of identification and relationship to the children they are accompanying to the passport office. On the other hand, children who are 16 or 17 years old may apply without their parents’ accompaniment, so long as they submit signed consent forms with their applications.

Child applicants must also be aware that there is a passport application fee that they are responsible for paying when they submit their requests. This amount is in addition to the $35 acceptance or execution fee that applicants are also responsible for paying. Application fees vary depending on the types of documents these applicants seek. Candidates who are 15 years of age or younger must pay the following fees:

  • Passport book: $80
  • Passport card: $15
  • Passport book and card: $95

Can I renew US passport materials for children online?

Once child applicants gather their passport renewal forms, they may wonder how they can submit these documents. For convenience, petitioners may be interested to know if there is a way that they can submit their applications online. However, this is not possible for either adults or children. It is also not permitted for child applicants to submit their requests for identification by mail. The only way that child petitioners can apply for a passport is by bringing their completed DS-11 applications and accompanying mandatory documents to a passport acceptance facility and submitting their requests in person.

How long does it take to renew a passport for children?

Many petitioners and their parents or guardians want to know, “How long does it take to renew a passport for kids?” Generally, this process takes as long as it does for adult applicants. Therefore, candidates can usually expect to receive their documents within four to six weeks from when the government receives their requests. However, applicants have the opportunity to get an expedited passport by requesting services through a trusted third-party provider. Petitioners who take advantage of this option can receive their documents more quickly than they would through standard processing services.