To give up trying to get British passports for my kids (serious question)

(16 Posts)
Coffeeinthepark Tue 18-Mar-14 12:46:55

My kids have dual nationality, both EU countries. The passport application process here is driving me crazy - I've filled in the forms 3 times now only to have them rejected because of tiny problems with things my 2 kind counter signatories have done or because I crossed out a tiny mistake on my bit. Then of course there is the £50 fee x2

So, my question is would it be unreasonable to stop trying and rely for the foreseeable future on their other EU passports? We will be travelling only in the EU. Is nationality defined by birth certificate or passport here? Can anyone think of any reason I should continue to try to get the forms for the UK passport right?

Wurstwitch Tue 18-Mar-14 12:49:34

Use the checking system in the post office if you are in uk.

We prefer to have both. Just in case.

SallyMcgally Tue 18-Mar-14 12:53:24

It depends. I have a Greek friend who's lived here for over 20 years and is married to a Brit, and is thinking of taking British citzenship because renewing her Greek passport is such a PITA over here. My kids have Irish passports, but I find it less hassle to deal with their UK passports. Your children's right to a UK passport depends on where they were born and where their parents were born. Details on Home Office website.

Coffeeinthepark Tue 18-Mar-14 12:56:28

Wurstwitch - "just in case" of what? I'm naturally risk adverse but not sure what I need to be mindful of in this case. Do you mean you might lose one or do you mean you might need consulate help abroad from one over the other?

fuckwittery Tue 18-Mar-14 12:56:32

They will always be entitled to British passports if they are entitled now, you don't have to physically hold a passport to be a national of that country. They can apply when they are old enough to do it themselves.

I've never had a passport application rejected though and never paid for that check service, iI'm surprised it's been sent back so many times! <awards self smug form filling badge>.
I wouldn't have sent in a form with a crossed out bit though as the passport agency are notoriously fussy!

QueenofKelsingra Tue 18-Mar-14 12:57:25

my kids have dual nationality (EU) but for now only have passports for the country we live in.

DH has passports for both and usually travels on the 'foreign' one as he counts himself more of that nationality.

with the costs of passports we have decided to keep the DC with just the one passport for now. when they need adult ones we will start with the current ones and then give a few years stagger (for cost purposes and so both don't go out of date at the same time like DHs!!) before applying for ones in their other nationality.

is there a reason they need both? My DC have birth certificates from this country but are registered and I have documents to prove they have dual nationality.

ikeaismylocal Tue 18-Mar-14 13:00:17

I havn't bothered to get my ds a British passport, we live in sweden so he has a Swedish passport. I'm going to get a Swedish passport when my British one runs out as it's such a faff to renew it in Sweden.

In my opinion a British passport isn't important apart from defining my British identity and there are other ways I can do that.

So yanbu.

tripecity Tue 18-Mar-14 13:00:51

When I need to renew a passport, I go to the Post Office and pick up at least 2 duplicate forms per passport renewal. That way, you can throw away the form if you make a mistake and re-do it. They are famously fussy, it literally has to be perfect, as you have found.

Then when I have triple checked it, I get the counter signatories to sign it then I get it checked at the post office and they send it off

LinzerTorte Tue 18-Mar-14 13:08:00

My DC are dual Austrian/British citizens and used to have British passports, but it's so much easier, cheaper and quicker to get their passports here that I've reluctantly accepted it makes more sense for them to have Austrian passports (I think I was just clinging on to a bit of Britishness for them!).

I was told at the British consulate that the DC are automatically British citizens through me and that I didn't need a British birth certificate for them, so they now have no proof of British citizenship - but I'm not sure they actually need it. And they can always get British passports in the future if need be.

Use check and send at the post office - easier and cheaper than getting it wrong!

If they live in the UK personally, I would make sure they have UK passports, you never know which way the wind will blow next...

My dc are dual nationals but don't have passports for their non-resident country because we have no plans to take them there.

TalkinPeace Tue 18-Mar-14 13:15:18

I lived here for over 40 years before getting a British passport.

Fill out the form online and then use check and send at the post office
simple

wobblyweebles Tue 18-Mar-14 13:30:59

I am in a similar situation and I thought about not bothering renewing their British passports.

However things change, and who knows how much more difficult it will be to get a British passport in the future? Already the process of getting your first passport has become more difficult than it used to be.

Our family has multiple nationalities and there have been times when it has caused problems (eg DH had his ILR revoked accidentally at one point and could not work or claim any benefits in the UK, despite having a British mother) so now we keep all passports current just to be on the safe side.

May be an over-reaction.

wobblyweebles Tue 18-Mar-14 13:32:49

Also we usually renew when we are in the UK so we can use check and send at the PO.

But if you are renewing from abroad, the price just dropped.

SolomanDaisy Tue 18-Mar-14 13:40:04

If you only travel within the EU I can't see many reasons for needing to have both passports, given that they will retain their entitlement to British passports. The only thing I can think of is so far fetched that it's not worth the cost - some European countries discreetly negotiate with people holding their citizens hostage and Britain doesn't.

HazleNutt Tue 18-Mar-14 14:24:32

My DS has dual nationality, both EU, and I have not bothered applying for both passports. He will always have the right to apply, if this for some reason becomes necessary. But for now, both passports would give him pretty much the same rights to travel, even outside of EU, so I haven't considered it necessary.

pointythings Tue 18-Mar-14 14:40:27

My DCs have dual nationality, Dutch and US, and they do have both passports because if we want to travel to the US, they must do so on their US passport. Conversely, travel within Europe is easier on their Dutch passports. They aren't entitled to UK nationality, though they may choose to naturalise when they are of an age to do so.

However, getting Dutch passports renewed is really not that bad. We have to go to the Embassy in London, but the instructions for the forms are very clear and the only additional signature we need is DH's, to say they are allowed a Dutch passport. The embassy staff are friendly and very efficient, and processing time is fast. It sounds as if the UK system is less user friendly.

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