Thinking of taking a Spring Break trip with your kids out of the country? Before you buy those plane tickets or make that hotel reservation, here’s some food for thought… minors under the age of 16 cannot apply for a passport by themselves. Unless one parent has sole legal custody of the children under a court order, both parents and the child must appear in person to apply for the passport. If only one parent appears, that parent must have the other parent’s signed, notarized consent on the State Department’s Form DS-3053. In addition to a valid passport, many countries, like Mexico, require a parent traveling with a minor child without the other parent to have a notarized document from the other parent showing his or her consent to travel to that country. So, before you start planning your Spring Break trip or summer vacation with your kids out of the U.S., it is a good idea to check out the valuable information on the U.S. Dept. of State’s website: www.travel.state.gov.
By Nancy Grace