Tue | Sep 25, 2018

I'm away but want my passport

Published:Tuesday | July 7, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Dear Mr Bassie,

I am not in the United Kingdom but I would like to apply for my British passport. How would I go about obtaining this? Any advice would be appreciated.

- VR

Dear VR,

If a person is a British national who would like to renew or apply for a British passport from overseas, then that person should be aware that when making the application, there are certain forms that are to be used and there are specific charges that apply.

An applicant should download the application form from the United Kingdom www.gov.uk website and refer to the 'Applying for a passport if you're outside the UK' guidance notes to help you fill in the application form. An applicant should also include two identical new photos of him or her or your child, if it is a child passport application. It should be noted that there are specific rules that relate to passport photos and these should be followed or the application could be delayed.


check the guidance notes


It is also advisable to check the guidance notes to find out which supporting documents should be sent with the application. Applicants must also get documents that are not in English translated and these should include documents that show an address and that are fully translated by a professional translator.

Persons who have dual nationality must send a colour photocopy of every page of the non-British passport, including blank pages, as part of the application. Please be aware that applicants may be asked to show the non-British passport at a later date.

An application will take at least eight weeks from when it is received by Her Majesty's Passport Office in the United Kingdom to be processed. An application will take longer if Her Majesty's Passport Office needs to ask for more information or documents or if the photographs sent are rejected. It is important that the applicant not make travel arrangements until he or she has a valid passport. If a person needs to travel more urgently, he or she may be able to apply for an Emergency Travel Document.

Applicants will have to pay a fee for the passport and a courier fee of £19.86. The courier fee pays for the applicant's passport and supporting documents to be sent back securely. Please note that the adult standard 32-page passport cost £83.00 and the adult standard 48-page passport cost £91.00. The applicant will need to fill in a 'Paying by credit card or debit card' form for each passport that is being applied for, and this should be submitted with the application. Please note that an applicant's credit card will be charged in sterling.

- John S. Bassie is a barrister/attorney-at-law who practises law in Jamaica. He is a justice of the peace, a Supreme Court-appointed mediator, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, a chartered arbitrator and a member of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association (UK). Email:lawbassie@yahoo.com.