CPIAP: Children's Passport Issuance Alert Program definition

The Children’s Passport Issuance Alert Program (CPIAP) is a government scheme that allows the Department of State to verify with parents and legal guardians that their children have the correct parental consent to apply for a passport and travel overseas.

This is an optional but crucial program that allows parents to protect minors in their care from risks such as international parental abduction. Parents of the children enrolled in the scheme receive an alert if a passport application is submitted in their name.

Which Government Department Manages the CPIAP?

The Department of State is responsible for the management of the CPIAP. The scheme works as part of the department’s Passport Lookout System.

This allows parents to be informed of whether someone has applied for their child’s passport without their knowledge, before it is approved and issued to them.

How Is a Child Entered into the Children’s Passport Issuance Alert Program?

A child, under the age of 18, may be entered into the CPIAP by a few different parties.

Most commonly, parents with legal custodial rights will be the ones to register their child in the Alert Program. However, sometimes this is a court mandated decision and is submitted by law enforcement or the local court system in your state.

Children can be entered into the CPIAP regardless of whether they already have a passport or not. If the minor already holds travel ID, the alert system will only be triggered if a passport renewal application is received in their name.

To register a child onto the CPIAP you will need to:

  1. Complete an Entry Request Form, DS-3077.
  2. Submit your proof of identity (For example: your passport or driver's license).
  3. Provide a birth certificate, birth record, or other evidence of your parental authority and custody over the child, such as an adoption certificate or Acknowledgment of Paternity (AOP).

These registration items must then be either mailed, emailed or faxed to the following address:

U.S. Department of State

Overseas Citizen Services, Children's Issues

Attn: Children's Passport Issuance Alert Program

SA-17, 9th Floor

Washington, DC 20522-1707

E-mail: PreventAbduction1ATstate.gov

Phone: 1-888-407-4747

Fax: 202-485-6222

It’s also essential if your children are enrolled in the program that you keep the Department of State updated of any address changes.

What Happens if an Alert Is Triggered by the CPIAP?

In the event that a child who is registered with CPIAP has a passport application submitted in their name, the Department of State’s Office of Children’s Issues will make contact with the parent who registered the minor with the program.

This will confirm whether the child has the correct permission to get their passport and to ensure that the parent is fully aware and approves of the application. The parent will then be able to confirm or deny whether the application has been submitted with their consent.

The DOS will then use that information to confirm whether the application should continue to be processed or rejected accordingly.

What If a Child Registered with CPIAP Has a Foreign Passport?

If your child has citizenship in another country in addition to the United States, it is possible for them to be issued with a foreign passport even if they are enrolled in the CPIAP.

As the US does not enforce exit controls on people leaving the country, this could put children at risk of parental abduction.

To avoid this from happening, it is advised that parents of children with dual nationality send a written request to the local embassy or consulate of the nation where the minor holds their second citizenship.

In doing so, you should inform these national authorities that they should not issue any travel document to the child in question. You can also do this to prevent a visa from being issued from the country if your child only holds a US passport.

This request must also provide evidence of any court orders proving your parental and custodial rights over the child, or prohibiting overseas travel for the minor. You should also inform these national authorities that you will send a copy of this correspondence to the US Department of State.