A recent unannounced change in policy means that British passport holders will no longer be able to gain up to nine months of extra validity on passports renewed before their expiry date. Prior to now, a passport due to expire on 1 July 2019, for example, could be renewed up to nine months before this i.e. on 1 October 2018 and HM Passport Office would have issued a new passport valid until 1 July 2029.
Under the new policy, however, British passport holders will lose out on this ‘extra validity period’ and as already reported, many people may (quite rightly) feel ‘short changed’. Importantly, British travellers may have problems when travelling to countries that specify a minimum validity period on passports and this may therefore affect future travel arrangements.
Separately, HM Passport Office has advised that in the event that the UK leaves the EU without an agreement, those with British passports travelling in the EU should:
- Ensure that there is at least 6 months validity remaining on their passport from the date of arrival; and
- Be aware that if you renewed a 10-year adult passport before it expired, that those extra months added onto the passport’s expiry date will not count towards this 6 month validity.
Further information regarding EU countries affected by these rules can be located here.
British travellers are therefore advised to check the validity of their passports and whether they comply with the new rules before making travel arrangements. Additionally, careful consideration should be given with regards to the timing of renewing British passports.
Should you require assistance with renewing or obtaining a British passport, please do not hesitate to contact us.
The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please don’t hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.