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FamilyAttorney, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1371
Experience:  Owner, attorney in private practice, appellate attorney, GAL & former trial lawyer, licensed for 37 years
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I have raised my 13 year old child with no support or court

Customer Question

I have raised my 13 year old child with no support or court proceedings. I was never married, and the biological dad walked out when child was 3. There has been no contact made. I am taking my child on vacation this coming Christmas and need to get passport. It states on the passport form that both parents on birth certificate need to be present or write in with notarized signature.
We have no contact.. (he was abusive/ I don't want to find him) and I do not see it possible or practical that I need him to sign for a passport when he has not been in our lives all along. How can I get passport without him. Do I need to file for abandonment... if so, how, what is that process?
All I want is to take my child on a vacation:( Please help!
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 1 year ago.

Hello. I’m a family lawyer and appellate attorney with 36 years’ experience. I look forward to helping you today.

Please note:This is general information for educational purposes and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an attorney on this site. You are advised to retain your own attorney.

At the end of this discussion I'm going to ask you to please rate me as that's the only way I get credit for my time here today. Are you okay with rating me? Thank you!

I’ll be busy typing up your answer but I’ll be back shortly.

From what you're saying, he is on the birth certificate, correct?

Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 1 year ago.

If the father's name is ***** ***** birth certificate and you do not have sole legal custody of your son, then you cannot apply for a passport for him without the notarized consent of the father.

You do have sole custody but you don't have court-ordered sole custody, which is what they need to see, so you can file for sole custody -- otherwise you need to do this another way instead of filing for sole custody.

If the father cannot be located, you can submit a form which I will provide. The statement must explain in detail the father's unavailability and recent efforts made to contact him. Exigent/Special Family Circumstances are evaluated on a case-by-case basis and there is no guarantee that it will be approved.

Alternatively, you can request a court order -- not for sole custody but for permission for a passport. You request this from a judge to give you permission to obtain a passport for your son and travel with him on your vacation.


If your minor under 16 years of age needs a passport to travel internationally, and you cannot obtain the notarized written consent of the non-applying parent, you can use the forms I provided. The whole first page is just directions to fill out the form. The second page is the actual form you fill out and submit with the child's passport application.

The requirements for using this form are:

  1. The passport is needed for a minor child under 16
  2. There is a time-sensitive reason requiring the passport to be expedited
  3. The reason for the passport to be expedited must be related to the health or welfare of the child
  4. You cannot obtain the notarized written consent of the absent custodial parent

You can try the forms, or you can go to court. Let me know if you want me to find a family lawyer for you in your area. I would need to know the biggest city/town near you so I can find lawyers for you. I do this free of charge for my customers here, and while we're not allowed to recommend a specific attorney, I can point you in the right direction.

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Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 1 year ago.

Hi, just checking in to see if you still need help with your question and if my answer was helpful for you. Thanks and thank you for allowing me to help you.


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