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Last Updated: Tuesday, 30 October 2007, 12:44 GMT
New passport rules for the young
New moves will target child abduction and human trafficking
Children aged 16 and 17 will be able to apply for a passport without their parents' consent, the Identity and Passport Service (IPS) has announced.

The IPS says the move will bring the passport status of young people into line with the courts.

The service will also no longer consult parents about giving passports to 16 and 17-year-olds who have changed name.

Passports for children under 11 will require a countersignatory, in a bid to tackle child abduction and trafficking.

'Positively identify'

The rules over requiring parental consent will still be in force if it is required by a court order or if the person has a mental disability.

Home Office Minister Meg Hillier said: "Today's changes will bring passport practice into line with court practice on allowing young people to take responsibility for their own decisions.

"At the same time a new requirement will be introduced for children aged 11 or under for passport renewals to be countersigned.

"It is important that we positively identify children so that passports cannot be used to facilitate child abduction or human trafficking."

The new rules will come into force on 10 December.

MPs question new passport costs
09 Oct 07 |  UK Politics

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