Passport Articles | General Passports

What if i don't know anyone to countersign my passport

For those applying for a passport, a countersignatory is a mandatory requirement. Unfortunately, some people state they do not know anyone who can countersign their passport application. This can be a source of stress as the application process cannot move forward without a countersignatory.

The good news is that there are a substantial list of professionals who can countersign a passport application. These include a person of good standing in the community such as a priest, police officer, teacher, social worker, solicitor, optician, and bank manager.

These professionals must have known the applicant for more than two years and must be willing to confirm the identity of the applicant. Additionally, the countersignatory must be willing to confirm that the photograph is a true likeness of the applicant and they must sign the back of the photograph.

If an applicant has difficulty finding someone who can countersign their passport application, they should ask family and friends. A friend or community member who is willing to countersign a passport application must be over 18, hold a valid passport, and be willing to confirm the identity of the applicant.

It is important to remember that the countersignatory must not be a relative of the applicant, nor can they be related to the applicant by marriage, civil partnership, or adoption. Furthermore, the countersignatory must not be living at the same address as the applicant.

Who can countersign your passport application?

Although some people may believe they do not know anyone who can countersign their passport application, there is a substantial list of professionals that many people will not be aware of as follows:

• accountant
• airline pilot
• articled clerk of a limited company
• assurance agent of recognised company
• bank/building society official
• barrister
• chairman/director of limited company
• chiropodist
• commissioner for oaths
• councillor, e.g. local or county
• civil servant (permanent)
• dentist
• director/manager/personnel officer of a VAT-registered company
• engineer - with professional qualifications
• financial services intermediary, e.g. a stockbroker or insurance broker
• fire service official
• funeral director
• insurance agent (full time) of a recognised company
• journalist
• Justice of the Peace
• legal secretary - fellow or associate member of the Institute of Legal Secretaries and Pas
• licensee of public house
• local government officer
• manager/personnel officer of a limited company
• member, associate or fellow of a professional body
• Member of Parliament
• Merchant Navy officer
• minister of a recognised religion - including Christian Science
• nurse - RGN or RMN
• officer of the armed services
• optician
• paralegal - certified paralegal, qualified paralegal or associate member of the Institute of Paralegals
• person with honours, e.g. an OBE or MBE
• pharmacist
• photographer - professional
• police officer
• Post Office official
• president/secretary of a recognised organisation
• Salvation Army officer
• social worker
• solicitor
• surveyor
• teacher, lecturer
• trade union officer
• travel agent - qualified
• valuer or auctioneer - fellows and associate members of the incorporated society
• Warrant Officers and Chief Petty Officers

Please also note: Doctors can no longer sign your passport application, for more information in regards to this please see our article: Can my doctor countersign my UK passport application?

Do you have a friend who runs a or owns a company or do you work for a company?

If you need a countersignatory for your passport application, you may not be aware that you may be able to use a friend, colleague or boss who is a company director, manager or personnel officer, this basically means someone who has registered their details with Companies House, if so they can countersign your application.

This is a convenient and cost-effective way to get your passport application countersigned. You won't need to find someone who meets the criteria such as someone of professional standing, like a lawyer or solicitor, and you won't need to pay any fees.

The process of getting your passport application countersigned by a company director is relatively straightforward. Firstly, you will need to make sure that your friend has registered their details with Companies House, so they will need to be a director of a limited company for example, you will need to provide them with a copy of your passport application form, as well as a copy of the passport itself. Your friend will then need to countersign the document and return it to you.

When choosing your friend to countersign your passport application, it is important to remember that they must have known you for at least two years, and they must already have a valid British Passport.

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