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  #1  
Old April 24th, 2009, 07:24 PM
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chelle74 chelle74 is offline
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Default Passport with Statement of Special Circumstances

Has anyone applied for a passport for their child without having the other parent present? Although my ex-husband has joint legal custody, we have not been in contact with him for over 4 years and have no idea of his whereabouts. I know I can attempt to terminate his parental rights, but we don't really have the time or $$ to do so right now. My MIL is taking us on a cruise that leaves September 6. The plan is to apply for our passports this coming week - I have the statement filled out, I just wondered if anyone else has had any luck with getting a passport in a similar situation?

TIA!
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  #2  
Old April 24th, 2009, 08:38 PM
RatherBFishin RatherBFishin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chelle74 View Post
Has anyone applied for a passport for their child without having the other parent present?
Sounds like you already know the process, but just in case here's the official link:

http://travel.state.gov/passport/get...inors_834.html

If you've filled out the form DS-3053 correctly, then that's pretty much all you can do. But since you currently have physical custody, I think you'll be ok.

Although it's the exact opposite situation as yours, I didn't have any problems as the non-custodial parent when the kids were younger. But my Ex wasn't in absentia, and filled out her part.
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  #3  
Old April 25th, 2009, 12:56 PM
eandj eandj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chelle74 View Post
Has anyone applied for a passport for their child without having the other parent present? Although my ex-husband has joint legal custody, we have not been in contact with him for over 4 years and have no idea of his whereabouts. I know I can attempt to terminate his parental rights, but we don't really have the time or $$ to do so right now. My MIL is taking us on a cruise that leaves September 6. The plan is to apply for our passports this coming week - I have the statement filled out, I just wondered if anyone else has had any luck with getting a passport in a similar situation?

TIA!
Don't know your specific itinerary but....
You will NOT need a passport for you OR your child if you are cruising the Caribbean starting and ending in the same U.S. port. A birth certificate and drivers license will do it for you and just the birth cert. for your child if under 16.

Altho a passport is recommended, for a "closed loop" Carib cruise, it is not required. (even after June 1 when some of the rules change)

HOWEVER...that being the law, know that you nor your child can fly back into the U.S. from your ports without a passport. (In case there was emergency) See this page for an explanation. Note the "Western Hemisphere Travel Iniatiative" information.


http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html


Last edited by eandj; April 25th, 2009 at 12:57 PM.
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  #4  
Old April 25th, 2009, 02:21 PM
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cherylandtk cherylandtk is offline
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Michelle,

Many single parents have obtained passports using that form, it just depends on your unique circumstances as to how difficult (or not) that process will be. You won't know until you try, so go ahead and file with as much detail as you can provide and see what happens.

I hate to say it but if your child is younger than ~14-15, you may want to re-think that sole legal custody issue. Anytime you want to leave the country with your child, even with a passport, you could be asked for travel permission from the missing ex-that-still-has-joint-legal-custody. It usually does not happen much on cruises, but it has on occasion in the past, and will again in the future. The older your child is, the less likely that you will be seen as a possible parental abduction. But who wants to be denied boarding because you don't have travel permission? Yes, it's a pain to get the sole legal custody, but only you can decide if the cost supercedes the risk.
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Old April 25th, 2009, 02:57 PM
eandj eandj is offline
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Michelle, you might also want to consult a free-help law clinic at your local city hall or courthouse. They might have ideas for you in regards to filing necessary paperwork for single legal custody without high cost. Most large cities have the free clinics for cases like yours. Good luck.
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Old April 25th, 2009, 03:49 PM
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I had to get the statement notarized
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Old April 25th, 2009, 07:24 PM
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chelle74 chelle74 is offline
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Thanks for all of the replies. My son will be 13 at the time of our cruise... we're going to go ahead and apply and just see what happens, I guess. Our last cruise wasn't an issue, but I sort of fudged a permission letter and a friend notarized it for me. I felt guilty about it, regardless of the circumstances, and ended up not needing the letter. But I agree that sole legal custody is the ideal way to go. I will check around to see if we can get any sort of assistance to get that taken care of.

Thanks again!
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  #8  
Old April 25th, 2009, 09:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eandj View Post
Don't know your specific itinerary but....
You will NOT need a passport for you OR your child if you are cruising the Caribbean starting and ending in the same U.S. port. A birth certificate and drivers license will do it for you and just the birth cert. for your child if under 16.

Altho a passport is recommended, for a "closed loop" Carib cruise, it is not required. (even after June 1 when some of the rules change)

.


http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html
??
After June 1 I will need a passport to go to dinner 5 miles South but you won't to go to several foreign nations in the Caribbean?
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  #9  
Old April 25th, 2009, 09:51 PM
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??
After June 1 I will need a passport to go to dinner 5 miles South but you won't to go to several foreign nations in the Caribbean?
Yep, that is true. Well, you could also use a passport card to go to your dinner. But that's the way the regulations came out in the end. There is a long federal document explaining the rationale, but I don't expect that will make you feel any better.
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  #10  
Old April 25th, 2009, 10:12 PM
eandj eandj is offline
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??
After June 1 I will need a passport to go to dinner 5 miles South but you won't to go to several foreign nations in the Caribbean?

YEP! That's why the Customs dept came up with the Passport Card. For people that just drive over the boundaries to Canada and Mexico for work, entertainment etc. Cheaper than a passport and easier to carry and flash each time you drive over.
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  #11  
Old April 25th, 2009, 10:30 PM
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that would be called the cruise industry lobby...thus, you need a passport/card to go to mexico for your tamales but to go on a CRUISE to mexico your photo ID and BC will suffice.
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