Birth of U.S. Citizens Abroad – CRBA
Congratulations on your child’s birth!
A child born abroad to a U.S. citizen parent or parents may acquire U.S. citizenship at birth if certain statutory requirements are met. If it is determined that the child acquired U.S. citizenship at birth the Department of State will issue a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA), in the child’s name. According to U.S. law, a CRBA is proof of U.S. citizenship.
Where to Apply: To apply, your child must have been born or reside in Montenegro.
How to Apply: All CRBA applications must first complete the online application and payment and then we will schedule an appointment for you at U.S. Embassy Podgorica for the in-person interview. U.S. citizen parents complete a CRBA application online, upload all required documents, and submit payment prior to the in-person interview.
- To apply for a CRBA online, you need to create a MyTravelGovaccount using Chrome, Edge, or Safari as your browser. MyTravelGov is a secured, encrypted portal. Watch this video to learn more about creating your account.
- Once you have created a MyTravelGov account you can access eCRBA and submit your application online. The easy-to-use online process provides applicants with step-by-step instructions on how to complete the application. For each application, you are required to upload clear scans of all the documents you will be submitting with the application (applicant’s/parents’ passports or IDs, birth and marriage certificates, etc.).
- The fee for this service is $100.00.
- Once you complete the online application and submit payment, you should then email U.S. Embassy Podgorica at PodgoricaACS@state.gov. Please subject your email as “CRBA request” and provide the name and surname of the child, as well as the names of both parents.
Both parents, if available, and the child CRBA applicant must be present at the in-person interview with the original documents and their photocopies (single-sided). Embassy staff will return the original documents to you after reviewing your application. You must bring the international version of the birth and marriage certificate. You must provide English translations for all documents in a foreign language.
The Interview: On the day of the CRBA appointment, the child and both parents must appear. In many cases, the approval for the CRBA can occur during the course of that interview and the parent(s) may wish to then apply for a U.S. passport for the child at the same time that they apply for a CRBA. Both parents must be present or if one cannot be present, MUST provide original, notarized DS-3053 consent to apply for the U.S. passport.
Requirements for the Interview: In order to apply for a CRBA please upload following and bring the originals to the interview:
- The international version of the child’s foreign birth certificate;
- The proof of citizenship for each parent;
- For the transmitting U.S. citizen parent(s), the preferred form is a U.S. passport.
- For non-U.S. citizen parents, their valid passport is preferred.
- Proof of sufficient physical presence in the United States by the transmitting parent;
- The international version of the Marriage certificate, if the transmitting U.S. citizen parent is married;
- If either parent was previously married, a certified copy of the divorce decree or other document;
Please note: the consular officer may ask for additional documents at the time of application.
To apply for the child’s first passport: Additional documents required for a U.S. passport are listed below.
- Please bring with you completed Application for a U.S. Passport (DS-11).
- One passport photo (must be 5 cm X 5 cm) with a white background.
- Photo must be from within the last 6 months; a full front view; no glasses allowed.
- $135.00 fee (payable in U.S. dollars, Euros, or by credit card) at the Embassy.
- Please see requirements on passport applications for minors
- Please complete and bring the form, but do not sign.
When to Apply: Parents of a child born abroad to a U.S. citizen or citizens should apply for a CRBA as soon as possible. Failure to promptly document a child who meets the statutory requirements for acquiring U.S. citizenship at birth may make it more difficult to establish the child’s U.S. citizenship. CRBA applications must be made before the child’s eighteenth (18th) birthday.
Other Important Information
Passport applications and Social Security Card applications must be completed and submitted separately.
Please note that an application for a Social Security Number can only be submitted after receiving the original Consular Report of Birth Abroad and Passport. To obtain a Social Security Number for your child, see further details at https://ba.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/social-security/
Evidence of Parent’s U.S. Citizenship
- Proof of U.S. Citizenship can be demonstrated by the following: A full validity U.S. passport (currently valid or expired); Certified U.S. birth certificate (should have a seal, registrar’s signature, and the date the certificate was filed with the registrar’s office – hospital birth certificates are not acceptable); Consular report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240/FS-1350); Certificate of Naturalization; Certificate of Citizenship. Military ID cards and social security numbers are NOT proof of citizenship.
Affidavit of Parentage, Physical Presence and Support (DS-5507)
- Parents who were not married at the time of the child’s birth also need to bring in evidence of their physical presence together at the time of the child’s conception (i.e. passport stamps, military travel orders) as well as proof of their relationship prior to the child’s birth (i.e. letters, photos).
Evidence of physical presence
- If only one of the parents is a U.S. citizen, he or she must bring proof of physical presence in the United States prior to the child’s birth. Primary evidence that may establish your physical presence in the U.S. include: Transcripts from high school and/or college, and Wage Statements, DD214 Separation Statement (for Military Members). Secondary evidence includes: Credit Card Bills, Utility bills, Tax forms, Airline ticket stubs, former/current passport showing stamps.
Updated: August, 1, 2023