Reporting a Birth Abroad
Documenting Children Born Abroad to U.S. Citizen Parents
Children born abroad to U.S. citizen parents may have a claim to U.S. citizenship. If the parent or parents meet the legal requirements to transmit citizenship to their child, the child’s birth may be reported at the Consulate and a U.S. passport and social security number may be obtained for him or her. Provided the citizenship transmission requirements are met, the Consulate will prepare a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, which will provide important evidence of the child’s citizenship.
The Consulate strongly recommends that you report the birth of your child as soon as possible after birth. It is not possible to issue a Consular Report of Birth Abroad for a child who is over the age of 18, but the child may still be entitled to U.S. citizenship and a passport. In these cases, you still must complete an application for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad and follow the same instructions as below.
Please note that even if your child holds the nationality of a country other than the United States, if your child has a claim to U.S. citizenship, he or she must be in possession of a valid U.S. passport to enter and exit the United States. The child is not eligible to apply for a U.S. visa in his or her foreign passport.
Applying for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad
Please read all of the below information carefully. Following the instructions is essential for a smooth and efficient visit to the Consulate to register the birth of your child.
Children born abroad to U.S. citizen parents may have a claim to U.S. citizenship. To apply for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, please follow the link to the appropriate checklist below.
- Instruction sheet: Child of two U.S. citizen parents (PDF 22 KB)
- Instruction sheet: Child of one U.S. citizen parent (PDF 22 KB)
The required form, Application for Consular Report of Birth Abroad (DS-2029) (PDF 52.3 KB), may be found here. Please ensure that all blanks are filled in or marked N/A if not applicable.
It is essential to follow the instructions carefully so as to prevent problems or delays when appearing at the Consulate for your appointment. Please note the following:
- Applying for passports and social security numbers. When you apply for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad for your child, you may also apply for a U.S. passport and submit the child's Application for a Social Security Number (PDF 237 KB) at the same time. Please see the section Applying for a First-time Passport for more information on the passport application.
- Who has to come? Only one U.S. citizen parent needs to come to the Consulate to apply for a Consular Report of Birth. If you are also applying for a passport for your child, the child must be present and both parents must appear, or provide notarized consent. For further information, see the section Applying for a First-time Passport.
- Proof of physical presence or residency. Consular Reports of Birth Abroad for previous children are not sufficient proof that parents are eligible to transmit citizenship. Each child's Consular Report of Birth Abroad is evaluated separately, and parents are required to bring in sufficient proof of either residency (in the case of two U.S. citizen parents) or physical presence (in the case of one U.S. citizen parent) regardless of whether or not you have Consular Reports of Birth for previous children.
- Photocopying. Please bring all your original documents as well as a set of photocopies, including copies of passports, birth certificates and marriage certificates. Due to the high volume of applications, the Consulate now charges $1 per page to make copies. We will return the originals to you, but we must see the original documents to process the application.
- Translations. If your documents are in Arabic or Hebrew, you will need to translate the forms in advance. This does not need to be an official translation. You can prepare unofficial translations yourself using this translations form (PDF 10 KB). Please do not appear in the Consulate on the day of your appointment without the translations, since this will result in the delay or postponement of your appointment.
Other Required Documentation
If only one of the child’s parents is a U.S. citizen, or if both parents are U.S. citizens but both were born outside the United States, the parents must complete this Physical Presence Affidavit (PDF 15 KB) and provide evidence such as certified school records, old passports, and other documentation, to corroborate the affidavit. Follow this link for more information on the physical presence requirement.
In particular, please note the following:
- For cases of one U.S. citizen parent, the U.S. citizen must complete the Physical Presence Affidavit.
- In cases with two U.S. citizen parents where neither were not born in the United States, either parent who has resided in the United States should complete the Physical Presence Affidavit.
- In cases with two U.S. citizen parents where only one parent was born in the United States, we recommend that the parent who resided in the United States the longest complete the Physical Presence Affidavit ahead of time, since this will assist in expediting the interview.
- Consular Reports of Birth Abroad for previous children do not constitute sufficient proof that parents can transmit citizenship, since each child’s case must be adjudicated separately. Every appearance at the Consulate to register the birth of a child requires the presentation of evidence of physical presence or residence in the U.S.
If the parent or parents do not meet the physical presence or residency requirements, they cannot transmit citizenship to their child at birth. The American Citizen Services section of the Consulate can issue a non-citizenship letter, which can be used to apply for a visa for the child to travel to the United States. For questions on this, please e-mail JerusalemACS@state.gov.
The Child Citizenship Act
Children of a U.S. parent or parents, who did not obtain citizenship at birth, may nonetheless be eligible to naturalize as an American citizen under the Child Citizenship Act. For further information on this, please follow the link to the State Department's Child Citizenship Act of 2000 information page. For further information, please e-mail JerusalemACS@state.gov.
A non-refundable application fee of $65 is charged to apply for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad. This fee is for the application and adjudication costs, and will not be refunded if it is found the child is not eligible for citizenship. This fee may be paid in U.S. dollars (please ensure the bills are not torn) or in Israeli shekels at the current exchange rate. Payment can be made in cash or credit card only. No personal checks accepted.
The Consulate no longer accepts self-addressed, stamped registered mail envelopes for in-person applications. When you come to the Consulate for your appointment, you will be asked to complete an envelope from one of two contracted courier services. The courier service will either deliver your documents directly to your chosen address, or call you for pick-up at one of their centers.
The delivery time for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad is generally two to three weeks if you are also applying for your child’s passport. Wait times for only the Consular Report of Birth Abroad may be slightly shorter. Please review the Consular Report of Birth Abroad immediately upon receiving it, to confirm the information is correct.
Replacements and Corrections of Consular Reports of Birth Abroad
If you receive your Consular Report of Birth Abroad and notice an error, please contact the Consulate immediately at JerusalemACS@state.gov. If you contact the Consulate within a month of receiving the document, the Consulate can reissue a corrected copy free of charge.
To make corrections after one month you must submit a written request to State Department Vital Records Section using the Request for Correction of Consular Report of Birth form (PDF 26 KB). Please note that this form must be notarized, and can be done free of charge by a Consular Officer at the Consulate.
Scheduling an Appointment
Go to Scheduling an Appointment for more information on how to make an appointment. Each appointment is valid only for one child’s application; to register multiple children applicants are required to make multiple appointments.
Please remember, if you have an appointment for a Consular Report of Birth for your child, you can also apply for that child’s passport and submit the child’s Application for a Social Security Number (PDF 237 KB) at the same time.
Copies of Documents
The U.S. Consulate General Jerusalem is often asked how people can obtain copies of vital documents that were issued in the U.S.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), a U.S. government entity, offers state-specific information on how to obtain copies of birth, marriage, divorce, and death certificates issued in the United States.
Please follow this link to the Centers for Disease Control's National Center for Health Statistics, which will guide you through the process. You may follow this link to view/download the PDF version of this information (PDF 431 KB).
All downloadable documents on this page are provided in PDF format. To view PDFs you must have a copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader. You may download a free version by clicking the link above.