Family Law Questions? Ask a Family Lawyer Online.
As you know, federal law requires the signature of both parents, or the child's legal guardians, prior to the issuance of the passport for a child under the age of 16. Both parents must either appear in person to request the passport, or the non-applying parent may sign a form before a notary public granting permission for the issuance of a passport. Alternatively, the parent applying for the passport must document his/her sole authority to obtain a passport for the child. In order to comply with the law, Passport Services will require evidence of one of the following:
If the father will not sign off, you will have to file a petition with your local family law court for an order granting you the right to apply and obtain one for him.
If the order gives you full physical and legal custody, all you should need is a copy of that court order.
If this is not the case, you should be able to file this petition and get an order fairly quickly - you should be able to get it done within a few months.
How many months and how much does it cost to file a petition? (And how do I know if the full permanent custody I was granted includes physical and legal? I'm not sure that's what that means.)
It depends on the court docket, schedules, etc. However, you should be able to get this done within 45-60 days. I can't tell you the exact cost - much depends on how much an attorney costs. IF you want this done asap, you should hire an attorney.
The court order should tell you whether you have sole legal and physical custody.