Close X

Passports and International Megan's Law

Posted by Fay Arfa | Nov 03, 2017 | 1 Comment

Passports and International Megan's Law

Newsroom / OCTOBER 30, 2017

On February 8, 2016, Congress enacted the International Megan's Law to Prevent Child Exploitation and Other Sexual Crimes Through Advanced Notification of Traveling Sex Offenders (IML) (Public Law 114-119).

The IML prohibits the Department of State from issuing a passport to a covered sex offender without a unique identifier, and it allows for the revocation of passports previously issued to these individuals that do not contain the identifier (22 USC 212b).

The identifier is a passport endorsement, currently printed inside the back cover of the passport book, which reads: “The bearer was convicted of a sex offense against a minor, and is a covered sex offender pursuant to 22 United States Code Section 212b(c)(l).”  Since endorsements cannot be printed on passport cards, covered sex offenders cannot be issued passport cards.

Only the DHS/ICE Angel Watch Center (AWC) can certify an individual as a “covered sex offender.” Therefore, any questions by the applicant about such status must be directed to and resolved by AWC.

Applicants who have questions for AWC regarding their status or believe they have been wrongly identified as a covered sex offender as defined in Title 22 United States Code 212b(c)(1) should contact AWC at [email protected].

About the Author

Fay Arfa

Fay Arfa has the distinction of being Certified as a Specialist in two separate areas of law – Criminal Law as well as Appellate Law – by the California State Bar, Board of Specialization. The National Board of Trial Advocacy has also awarded her a board Certification in Criminal Trial Advocacy. ...


James Reply

Posted Feb 02, 2023 at 16:16:33

How is this not a violation of the 14th Amendment? If someone commits a crime and are convicted of that crime, (felony), then why are murderer’s, drug offenders, thieves, etc, not included in having identifiers in the back of their passports? Wouldn’t an identifier in the back of a drug offender’s passport assist the receiving country in bringing closer scrutiny to the offender upon departure from their country, to ensure they aren’t smuggling illegal narcotics? This is absurd that this relates to only one classification of offender.

Leave a Comment

Board Certifications

Contact Us Today

Fay Arfa is committed to answering your questions about Trials, Appeals, Habeas Corpus, State Crimes, Federal Crimes, and Sex Crimes law issues in California.

We offer a free telephone consultation and we'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.