Applying for First-time Passport (Children under 16)

FEE: 115 USD*

Application Procedure:

  • Passport services are provided by appointment only.  Please use our online system to schedule an appointment.

Required Documents: 

  • DS-11 (unsigned);
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship (original U.S. birth certificate, U.S. Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA), U.S. certificate of citizenship, or U.S. naturalization certificate);
  • Proof of parentage (U.S. birth certificate showing parents’ names)
  • Proof of identity for both parents (current U.S. or foreign passport, U.S. naturalization certificate, U.S. certificate of citizenship or another government-issued document that includes a photograph);
  • One photo: 5×5 cm (2×2 inches), on a plain white background, taken in the last 6 months; Please do not staple the photo to your application;
  • DS-3053 (if one parent cannot apply in-person), with notarized copy of non-appearing parent’s identification attached to the notarized DS-3053;
  • DS-64 (for lost or stolen passports);
  • Original death decree for parent(s), or original court documents stating sole custody (if applicable), or DS-5525 if the non-applying parent can’t be located (if applicable);

Please note: All children under the age of 16 must appear in person.  We do not accept passport applications for children who are not present.

All non-emergency American citizen services are provided by appointment only.  Please use our online system to schedule an appointment. All passport applications require an in-person appointment at U.S. Embassy Kigali.

When applying for a passport for a minor child, the child and both parents must appear at the U.S. Embassy. If one parent is unable to appear, he or she should complete form DS-3053 Statement of Consent from the non-applying parent and provide the notarized form to the parent appearing with the child. The absent parent must also provide a photocopy of his/her passport, driver’s license or other government-issued photo ID. This form is only valid for 90 days.

Please be prepared to provide the following when you come to the Embassy with your child:

  • Completed but unsigned DS-11: Application for Passport (First-time);
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship for the child, such as an original or certified true copy of the child’s U.S. birth certificate, U.S. Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA), U.S. naturalization certificate or U.S. certificate of citizenship.
  • Proof of identity for the child’s parents, such as a current U.S. or foreign passport, U.S. naturalization certificate, U.S. certificate of citizenship, or another government-issued document that includes a photograph;
  • If only one parent is applying with the child, notarized form DS-3053 Statement of Consent from the non-applying parent signed by the non-appearing parent and dated within 90 days. The absent parent must also provide a photocopy of his/her passport, driver’s license or other government-issued photo ID.
  • One passport-sized photo of the child, 5×5 cm (2×2 inches), on a plain white background, taken in the last 6 months; Please do not staple the photo to your application;
  • Payment in the amount of $115.  We accept U.S. dollars printed during or after 2009, Rwandan francs, or credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Diners, and debit cards bearing the Visa or MasterCard logo).

Passport renewals for children under 16 are treated as new passports each time. You will need to provide the same information mentioned above, as well as your child’s current U.S. passport.

To enhance the accurate identification of passport applicants and aid in the prevention of international child abduction and trafficking, the Department of State requires the personal appearance of all minors under the age of 16 applying for U.S. passports.

Usually, families can expect to spend 30 to 45 minutes at the Embassy when applying for a minor passport. While we do strive to quickly process applications, occasionally there may be a longer wait.

Normally, it takes approximately ten business days for the Consular Section to receive passports at U.S. Embassy Kigali. Upon receipt, you will be contacted by email to inform you that the passport is ready to be picked up. If it has been more than one month since you submitted the application or if you have an urgent need to travel, please contact us via email at consularkigali@state.gov.

Congress passed the Nance-Donovan Act to prevent international parental child abduction by requiring the consent of both parents, or documentation of sole custody, for passport applications on behalf of children under the age of 16.

Both parents must sign the passport application in the presence of a consular officer, or if only one parent is applying, he/she must document the other parent’s consent to the application using a notarized DS-3053, which must include a copy of the identification document used to verify the identity of the individual who signed the form.

If you are the applying parent or guardian and the written consent of the non-applying parent or guardian or evidence of sole custody cannot be obtained in a timely manner, complete the DS-5525 “Statement of Exigent/Special Family Circumstances”. The statement must explain in detail the non-applying parent’s or guardian’s unavailability and recent efforts made to contact the non-applying parent. You may also be required to provide evidence (e.g., custody order, incarceration order, restraining order) to document your claim of exigent or special circumstances.

The applying parent must provide evidence of full custody/guardianship, such as:

  • child’s birth certificate naming only the applying parent;
  • adoption/guardianship decree naming only the applying parent/guardian;
  • court order granting sole custody, with no provision limiting the minor’s travel;
  • court order specifically authorizing passport issuance regardless of custody;
  • court order declaring the non-applying parent/guardian incompetent;
  • death certificate of the deceased non-applying parent.