Losing a passport, or having it stolen, is one of the most dreaded situations for any British citizen. This document is essential to everyday life both within the country and abroad. Failing to present it could, in certain situations, result in problems for the passport holder.
Lost passport abroad?
Fortunately, the British government does account for a lost or stolen document, allowing British nationals to replace it relatively easily. The key to this process is the LS01 form. Victims of loss or theft should fill out and send to HM Passport Office. From there, the application process runs in very much the same way it does when first applying for a passport. The standard waiting time is six weeks. You can use the Fast Track (7 days) or Premium (1 day) services.
How to fill a LS01 form?
Filling in the LS01 form is also relatively easy. The information included does not need to be thorough. Indeed, it can be hard to remember all the details without the passport at hand. Instead, HM Passport Office requests that applicants give as much information as they can. Similarly, in case of a lost or stolen passport, applicants need to inform the relevant authorities.
Once the LS01 form has been received, HM Passports Office will set the cancellation process in motion and issue a replacement. Once a passport has been voided, it may not be used again, even if the applicant happens to find it. Citizens who attempt to use a voided passport, even if it does belong to them, may be held in custody by immigration authorities or the police. If you find a passport, you should always return it to HM Passports Office, which will dispose of or destroy them. Citizens who are abroad and need to urgently travel during the passport renovation period should secure an emergency travel document from the British embassy, which they should use to return to the United Kingdom as soon as possible. Once back in the mainland, they can then set about replacing their identification document, through the process described above.
It is evident, then, that while undeniably aggravating, the loss or theft of a passport is not necessarily a cause for panic. It is relatively easy to secure a replacement, and if you use the Fast Track or Premium services, you could have yours in your hands even faster! Please click here to start your application >