What to write when countersigning a passport photo

An essential step in the passport application process is to find a counter-signatory to sign your passport photo. The idea behind this is simple, the counter-signatory is a person of trustworthy status who has known you for a certain period of time who signs to confirm that you are who you say you are.

The process is simple, but problems can delay your passport application, so it’s best to know exactly who can countersign your passport photo and what they need to write.

For further information, refer to the Gov.uk website.

[h2]Who can countersign[/h2]

The first step is to find someone who is willing, able, and eligible to countersign your passport photograph. There aren’t many rules to this, but there are certain requirements. The person, for example, must not be related to you by birth or marriage, be in a relationship with you or live at the same address as you.

The person must be someone of good standing, be they working or retired, ideally from a recognised profession such as a doctor or school teacher. They must have known the applicant for a period of at least two years, and be able to easily identify the applicant.

[h2]Getting the photo counter-signed[/h2]

Once the person has agreed to countersign your passport photo, it’s simple. All they have to do is write on the back of the photo the following:

“I certify that this is a true likeness of [the applicant’s title and full name].”

With that done all they need to do is provide their signature and the date, and it’s done. The counter-signatory will also have to check through your application and provide their signature, and passport number, to confirm that to the best of their knowledge the information you have given is accurate.

Please also be aware that the passport office may need to contact your counter-signatory in the event they require any more information, so please make sure they’re aware of this. If they go on holiday for example and can’t be reached it will delay your passport application, so ensure they’re available if needs be.

Photo: Writing? Yeah. by crdotx licensed under Creative commons 2

How to apply for a passport for a baby

You’ve booked that dream family holiday and now it’s time to apply for your baby’s first passport. You can either pick up a form from the post office or apply online, but do it in plenty of time as a passport can take 3 weeks to arrive. If you need it in a hurry, use the special fast track service to get a passport in a week.

Who can apply?

Anyone who has parental responsibility can apply for a baby’s passport. You’ll need to give the details for both parents or provide an explanation why you’re applying on your own.

How do I apply?

It’s quite easy to apply for a passport for a baby. Just fill out the form and return it to the passport office with the following documents:

• 2 identical passport sized photos of your baby (45mm x 35mm)
• Your baby’s birth certificate or adoption certificate showing the parent’s details
• Proof that your baby is British – a registration document, or parent’s passports/birth certificates

You’ll also need to send any foreign passports if your baby has them, and any court orders that might apply.

Help, how do I get a passport photo of my baby?

Don’t panic – the rules have changed to make it easier than ever before to take a passport picture of your baby. And with our Paspic passport photo service it’s even easier because your photos are approved 99.5% of the time.

If your child is under 6 they don’t have to be looking directly at the camera or have a neutral expression – if they’re under the age of 1 they don’t even have to have their eyes open so you can snap them while they’re peacefully asleep!

And though they must be on their own in the photo with no toys or dummies, you can support them with your hand as long as it doesn’t show – a baby muslin makes an ideal neutral backdrop.

Then simply send them to us and we’ll do the rest!

Does my baby’s passport photo need verifying?

Just like applying for an adult passport, you’ll need to get a friend or colleague to verify your baby’s photos.

Is that it?

That’s it! Use the Post Office check and send service for additional peace of mind and then wait for your baby’s first passport to land on the mat and enjoy your first family holiday!

Who can verify passport photos?

If you thought having your passport photos taken was daunting, think again. Finding someone to verify your passport photos can be a difficult task but with all the facts at your fingertips you shouldn’t have too many problems.

Does my passport photo need verifying?

If you’re applying for a first adult or child passport or a renewal for a child under the age of 11 you’ll need to have your passport photo signed and verified. This also applies if you need a replacement passport or your photo has changed beyond all recognition.

If this is the case you need your photo countersigned by a professional person who should write ‘I certify that this is a true likeness of [title and full name of adult or child who is getting the passport]’ on the back along with their signature.

Who can verify my passport photo?

The person who verifies your photo must:

• Have known you for 2 years – this also applies to a children’s passport
• Be a colleague, neighbour or friend
• Be someone who has worked in or retired from one of the professions recognised by the passport office

Can I ask my doctor?

No you can’t, unless your doctor is also a personal friend. There are restrictions on who can verify your passport photos – for example, they can’t verify your photo if they work for the Passport Office.

You can’t ask your husband or wife, or any relative by birth or marriage. And you can’t have your photo verified by your live-in partner or anyone who lives at the same address as you.

What if I’m outside the UK?

If you live in the UK then your passport picture can be verified by another UK citizen who holds a British or an Irish passport. However, if you’re not in the UK then they can also hold an EU, Commonwealth or US passport. However, if they’re a British passport holder then your application will get processed more quickly.

How can I get my passport pictures approved?

At Paspic we have a 99.5% approval rate for our passport photos. So if you can find a professional person to verify your photos, we can help you get your passport photos approved first time.

How do I print a passport photo?

Once upon a time the only way to get a passport photo was to use a photo booth. You would queue up outside one, find yourself in a rush to take the photo, and pretty much have to make do with the outcome. It’s a whole different matter now though and there’s no need to visit a photo booth anymore. The question is: how can you print your own passport photo? This guide will tell you everything you need to know.

What do you need?

Don’t worry, you don’t actually need a fancy camera or even hi-tech equipment. Instead, you simply need anything that’s capable of taking a picture (including your mobile phone) and an internet connection. You don’t even need paper nowadays, nor do you need to leave the comfort of your own home.

What do you do?

Once you’ve taken a picture that you’re happy with, you can rely on an online passport printing service. Your job is pretty much complete once it’s uploaded and out of your hands. The image will be assessed to ensure it meets the strict government guidelines before the hard copies will be returned to you in the post within two working days.

What can you do to speed things along?

It’s only natural that you might want your passport photo returned to you in the quickest possible time so that you can complete your passport application ahead of your holiday. Due to this, you should read the government guidelines closely to make sure that you snap a suitable image before starting the process.

Is it safe?

Yes! Paspic has an incredible 99.5% success rate when it comes to approving pictures in line with what the passport office requires. Therefore, printing your own photos in this way is certainly safer than it ever was queuing up to use a photo booth.

Start the process today!

If you fancy printing your own passport photo but don’t fancy the hassle of leaving your home, be sure to use the superb service provided by Paspic. You’ll soon discover why so many people are now choosing to print their passport pictures at home.

Photo: US Passport by Damian613 licensed under Creative commons 2

How to take a good passport photo

A passport photo is something that a lot of people get wrong because they don’t understand the specific requirements.

This can drag out the passport application/renewal process, as passport offices will return your application if it does not meet the necessary standards. So, it’s in your interest to make sure that the passport photo is right.

Even if the application goes through, there’s the risk that when you’re rushing through an airport somewhere or trying to cross a border, the process can take longer with a bad passport photo.

Follow these key tips, and your photo should be accepted.

The right background

The passport photo should have a background which is ideally cream or light grey. It’s important that it’s not textured too, so if possible it’s better to use a wall for your background than a sheet.

Remember that natural lighting is essential, as if there is too much glare on your face or visible shadows, you run the risk of having the photograph refused. Your face needs to be clear.

The right position

A quick way of getting your passport photo refused is to have it cropped too close to your head. Remember, the passport office will crop the photo to fit into your passport, you don’t have to.

Ideally, you want to make sure that you have some free space around your head and shoulders, and that a decent proportion of your upper body can also be seen in the photo to help with identification.

The right look

Smiling is not something you want to do in a passport photograph, indeed any expression at all is undesirable. Try and rest your face in as neutral a pose as possible, remember that it’s not a fashion shoot.

Also make sure you remove any hats, scarves, or other items which might otherwise obscure your face. If you wear glasses it’s best to take them off, but if you need to leave them on then make sure they don’t pick up any glare in the lenses from the light.

How big is a passport photo?

Passport photos are essential, but are also one of the most common reasons for having your passport application rejected. Depending on whether you’re applying online or on paper, you’ll need either a digital photo, or two identical printed photos. But what size do your passport photos need to be? And what other rules are there? Let us explain…

Printed photos

If you’re applying using a paper application form, think about whether you can apply online instead. Applying online is cheaper, faster, and you’re less likely to make a mistake because the website guides you through the information you need to provide. That said, if you prefer to apply on paper, here are the rules your passport photos need to meet:

– There must be 2 identical photos (ie. two copies of the same photo).

– Each photo must be 45mm high and 35mm wide.

– You cannot cut down or crop a larger image.

Additionally, you must make sure that your photos are:

– professionally printed, not just produced on your home or office printer;

– clear and in focus;

– not black and white – only colour photos with no border will be accepted;

– not creased or torn;

– have not been edited with software eg. photoshop.

Digital photos

Digital passport photos need to be at least 600 pixels wide and 750 pixels tall, and between 50kB and 10MB in size. Other than that, they need to meet all the same quality requirements as printed photos in terms of being clear, in focus, and unaltered by software.

What does your photo need to show?

Passport photos need to be a clear picture of your face, facing into the camera, and not smiling or frowning. The photo needs to show your entire head and upper shoulders. It cannot show all or part of any other person, and must be taken against a plain cream or light grey background.

You must make sure that you keep your mouth closed, have your eyes open and visible (not hidden by hair, and with no redeye), and that you are not wearing a hat or head covering of any kind unless it is for religious reasons. There must also be no shadows covering your face.