Do I need a countersignature for a passport renewal?

It’s now easier than ever to submit a valid passport photo if you go through the right channels. However, you might require a helping hand if you require a countersignature. This scribble comes from an authorised individual who can vouch that you are the person on the photo. You will always need one of these if you’re applying for your first passport. The question is: do you require a countersignature if you’re only renewing your current passport? Here’s all the information you need to know.

Do you need a countersignature?

The majority of people will be fine to submit their passport photos without a countersignature in the case of a renewal. However, there are occasions when you may need to enlist a person to authorise your identity.

What circumstances require a countersignature?

You’ll require a countersignature if you look markedly different since your last passport photo. In particular, the guidelines state that it’s required if ‘you cannot be recognised from your existing passport’. This doesn’t mean the likes of a new hairstyle or colour, but instead different facial features – perhaps as a result of an accident or cosmetic surgery.

Is this rule the same for everyone?

No. This only applies for people aged 12 and above. With regards to children who are aged 11 and under, they will always require a countersignature in the case of a renewal because it’s assumed their facial features will have changed substantially since their first picture was taken.

Who can act as your countersignature?

The official passport guidelines state that passports must be signed by ‘a person of good standing in their community’. This includes people in a wide variety of occupations, such as accountants, solicitors, dentists, social workers, journalists and many more. These types of professionals are deemed to be trustworthy enough to vouch for passport applicants.

Do you need passport photos?

You can now take your passport photos from the comfort of your own home before having them authorised by the team at Paspic. You’ll then be able to have hard copies of the images sent to your address, meaning you are just a signature away from your passport photo being successfully accepted.

Photo: Photo by reynermedia licensed under Creative commons 4

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