- For a child adopted in the UK, either parent has to have British Nationality and be “habitually resident” in the UK.
- You’ll also need the adoption certificate and proof of the parent’s British Nationality like a British passport or UK birth certificate.
- For a child adopted abroad in a country that is a signatory to the Hague Convention, you’ll need a full Hague Convention Adoption Certificate as well as proof of the parent’s British Nationality.
- For a child adopted in a country that is NOT a signatory to the Hague Convention, you can bring the child to the UK, but you’ll need an immigration plan to eventually get them British citizenship.
First UK Passport Adopted Child:
The rules for getting a British Passport for your adopted child depend on where and when the child was adopted.
If your child was adopted in the UK, then for you to get a first passport for your adopted child, either adoptive parent must have British nationality and be “habitually resident” in the UK. You must provide the following when applying for the passport:
- The adoption certificate showing details of the British adoptive parent, as well as
- One of the following:
- The British passport details for either adoptive parent,
- A UK birth certificate for either parent,
- A Home Office certificate of registration or naturalisation for either parent,
- The British passport for either parent – must have been valid at the time of the adoptio
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First British Passport Adopted Overseas
If your child was adopted overseas, then obtaining a British passport depends on when and in which country the child was adopted:
- If the adoption took place before June 1, 2003, then obtaining a British passport depends on what country the child was adopted in, even if either or both parents are British nationals. In other words, for countries that are not signatories to the Hague Convention on inter-country adoptions, the adoption will only be recognized for parental responsibility purposes but not for British nationality purposes. In that case, you’ll need an immigration plan for your adopted child to be able to obtain British nationality.
- If the adoption took place on or after June 1, 2003, then a British passport can be obtained for the adopted child if either parent is British and habitually resident in the UK.
- However, to get a British passport for your child adopted overseas, you must present a full Hague Convention Adoption Certificate showing both adoptive parents’ details. This means that the country must be a signatory to the 1993 Hague Convention on inter-country adoption.
- You must also send evidence of your nationality such as your passport details. Remember, your passport must have been issued before the date of adoption.
- If you don’t have a British passport, you can send one of the following documents:
- If you were born or adopted in the UK before January 1, 1983, you can send a full birth certificate or adoption certificate.
- If you were born or adopted in the UK after January 1, 1983, you should send your parent’s full birth certificate or adoption certificate as well as a birth certificate, Home Office registration or naturalisation, or British passport (valid on your date of birth) of either parent. You can alternatively send other documents, like a foreign passport that shows the parent’s immigration status.
- If you were born outside the UK and you don’t have a passport then depending on how you became British, there are a number of documents you can use. For example:
- A certificate of naturalisation or registration plus the foreign passport you used to come to the UK, or
- Your birth certificate, your current passport, the passport you used to come to the UK, or
- Your birth certificate, your UK father’s birth certificate, your parents’ marriage certificate, or
- Your birth certificate, the passport you used to come to the UK, evidence of your parent’s British nationality.
- In other words, if you don’t have a British passport, you need the type of documents you would use to obtain your first British passport. Go to this UK government page for more information.
For Foster Children and Children in care, contact the Passport Adviceline for guidance.