Changes to the UK Passport Design

We have received notification from the UK Passport Office and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office regarding the change of design and layout of the UK passport. If you have recently obtained a new passport you will notice they now need to be signed in pen. Passport designs are updated from time to time, so why is this change important?

Passports must be signed

From October 2016 the UK passport office will begin to phase in new passports. By 2017 all newly issued passports will need to be signed by the person detailed in the passport. Previously the signatures were a digital copy taken from the passport application. The new version provides a section above the photo page for the individual to sign in black ink.

If an adult’s passport is not signed, it is not valid. Therefore, when sending a passport to us for the apostille, please ensure it bears a digital signature, or for recently issued versions, has a pen signature. Passports without a signature may be rejected when applying for the apostille.

Why legalise a passport with the apostille?

The most common reason to legalise a passport with the apostille is to prove your identity. Passports include your photo and date of birth whereas other forms of identification do not.

Businesses are often requested to provide passports for the company directors. This is particularly common when you dealing with financial transactions overseas or opening foreign bank accounts.

Passports are often provided with Power of Attorneys that must also have the apostille. This confirms the identity of the person issuing power to someone overseas to act on your behalf.

To order an apostille for a copy of your passport, simply send your passport securely with the completed order form you can find on the apostille order page. We complete most orders witin just 1-2 days. You can select a secure return delivery on the order form.

How are passports legalised?

On receipt of your order, we check the passport is correctly signed. Our solicitor will then make a photocopy of the picture page and certify the copy. The certified copy passport is then stamped and signed before the apostille is issued. We guarantee to issue the apostille or provide a refund for our service.

Overseas passports can be issued with the UK apostille, but we recommend you obtain the apostille from the country where the document was issued.

Sample Picture of New Passport Design

Sample Passport Design with Signature

Image courtesy of the UK Passport Office.

About the Author

The Apostille Service are pleased to provide advice on a wide range of document legalisation matters. Our team of advisors contribute to the blog.