Emergency passports may be issued to a client either:

  • In conjunction with an application for a full validity passport where the applicant cannot wait the 10 working days for the full validity passport to be returned to the originating post; or

  • In defined circumstances (see below), on its own, without a full validity passport being applied for or issued by the regional production centre.

Defined circumstances: Emergency passport

The issue of Emergency passports must be strictly controlled in line with the following defined circumstances:

  • Where an applicant can meet the full requirements but must travel urgently and is therefore unable to wait 10 working days for the issue of a full validity passport;

  • Where an applicant can present their most recently issued passport but cannot meet all the requirements for the issue of a full validity passport (due to lack of documentation, a suitable Guarantor etc) and the person needs to travel in a hurry and the overseas mission can positively confirm identity, Australian citizenship and entitlement;

  • Where the applicant has lost (or had stolen) his/her full validity passport but is travelling and needs to apply for the full validity passport at their final destination (to allow for the 10 working day turnaround time). In such cases the overseas mission must be able to satisfy the applicant’s identity and entitlement. In this situation the applicant MUST attend a personal interview to be issued with either a full validity passport or an Emergency passport; and

  • Where the applicant has not previously held an Australian passport (normally overseas this would be a child) then the applicant must appear for a personal interview or in the case of a child, the parent or person with parental/caring responsibility must lodge on behalf of the child. The overseas mission must positively confirm the applicant’s identity, citizenship and entitlement before any type of document is considered. If confirmed, and the applicant cannot wait for the 10 working days or cannot meet all the requirements, then an Emergency passport can be considered by the overseas mission. However, where the applicant is a child and there are any doubts about the identity or parental responsibilities or if both parents (or those with parental responsibility) have not given consent to the issue of a passport then the application MUST be referred to the Approved Senior Officer (ASO) for consideration. All children’s applications for Emergency passports must have the consent of both parents or the prior approval of the ASO.

All other applications outside those mentioned above must be referred to Canberra for determination / instructions.

When an applicant is issued an Emergency passport overseas, completed their travel and returned home, they should seek a replacement full validity passport prior to their next travel. There is no guarantee that a consecutive emergency passport will be issued. See ‘ Consecutive Emergency passports ’.

Where an applicant who already holds a full validity passport, can demonstrate that they meet the requirements for a concurrent passport and there is a demonstrated urgent need to travel, a concurrent Emergency passport may be issued with validity restrictions, see ‘ Emergency concurrent passports ’.

In special circumstances, where a personal interview is not possible, a Document of Identity may be considered in accordance with the Australian Passports Determination, Section 6.3, provided the overseas mission is satisfied as to the identity and nationality of the applicant, and the applicant is of a nationality entitled to a Document of Identity. In these cases approval should be sought from the Regional Eligibility Centre (REC).