Written answers

Thursday, 18 November 2021

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Passport Services

Photo of Niamh SmythNiamh Smyth (Cavan-Monaghan, Fianna Fail)
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7. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the reason for the delay in the provision of passports for children (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [56350/21]

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
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Section 14(1) of the Passports Act 2008, requires evidence of the consent of a child’s guardians before a passport can be issued to them by the Passport Service.

In the case of the applications raised by the Deputy, incomplete Child Passport Identity and Consent forms were submitted.

It is essential that the Passport Service receives evidence of consent of a child's guardians duly witnessed and that consent is verified correctly before a passport can issue. This ensures that the Passport Service protects the integrity of the passport itself and the rights of the child and their guardians.

In this case, the Passport Service contacted the parent of the children on 6 November 2021, explaining the problem with the Child Passport Identity and Consent forms and requesting that new forms be correctly completed and returned. These will be processed immediately once received.

In recent years we have been monitoring and mitigating issues that arise for applicants during the online and paper based passport application process. We regularly advise applicants online to ensure that their consent form is correctly witnessed at the final stage of the online process.

Comprehensive instructions on how to complete these identity and consent forms are available on my Department's website (www.dfa.ie/passports/) and are also available to the applicant as they go through the online application process.

In summary, it is a three step process

1. One of the child’s guardians must accompany the child to an appropriate witness;

2. The witness must know the child, confirm the child’s identity and

3. Witness the signature of the guardian or guardians who have accompanied the child by completing, signing and stamping the relevant sections of the online or paper application form.

If the second guardian is not present, they can, if necessary, ask another appropriate witness to witness their consent separately.


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