Hamburg.deHamburg ServiceApply for an identity card for the first time

Apply for an identity card for the first time

Once you are 16 years old, you must have a valid form of identification that can be used to verify your identity. This is usually an identity card or a passport.

Detailed description

As a German citizen over the age of 16, you are required to have a valid identity card or a valid passport.

You can apply for your identity card at any Hamburg Service location.




The obligation to apply for an identity card applies to you if you

  • have German citizenship,
  • have reached the age of 16,
  • are registered in Germany,
  • do not have a valid passport.
For applications outside of your main residence:
  • You must be able to explain an important reason why you are not applying for an identity card from the identity card authority responsible for your main place of residence.
  • Exception: The provisional identity card cannot be applied for abroad.

Documents required

  • Biometric passport photo: The photo must
    • be up to date and
    • meet photo requirements for e-passports.
  • if available and not yet validated: old passport or children’s passport (valid or already expired)
  • if you do not have a valid passport or children's passport: birth certificate or marriage certificate. In this case, your identity must be confirmed to the authorities by a parent or guardian
  • for children under the age of 16: if necessary, a declaration of consent from the parent who has custody of the child who is not present
    • if there is only one legal guardian, proof of custody is also required
  • after naturalization:
    • Passport or ID card of the country of birth or a certificate of identity
    • certificate of naturalization

Please note

  • An extension or change of the identity card is not possible. A new identity card is always issued.
  • You will receive the PIN letter if you are at least 15 years and 9 months old at the time of application.
  • People without a permanent address or the homeless should contact the Hamburg Service Hamburg-Mitte.


If you have just turned 16, have German citizenship and are registered in Germany, the application must be submitted immediately if you do not have a valid passport document, i.e. a passport or a provisional passport.

The period of validity depends on your age when you apply:

  • Application under the age of 24: ID card is valid for 6 years.

  • Application from the age of 24: ID card is valid for 10 years.

A provisional identity card is valid for a maximum of three months.


You must apply for the identity card in person at the Hamburg Service. If you do not apply for your identity card at your main place of residence, you need an important reason and a surcharge will be added to the fee. If you contact the Hamburg Service you have selected beforehand, you can find out whether and to what extent they will recognize your reason.

  • You can make an appointment online or by phone.
  • As a young person over the age of 16, you can apply for an identity card yourself.
  • For children and young people under the age of 16, all parents with custody submit the application together. A parent with custody can be represented by the other parent when filing the application. If the custodians are separated, the presence of the custodian with whom the underage, unmarried child usually resides is mandatory. The children and young people must always appear in person, as Hamburg Service will check their identity. They must also sign if they are 10 years or older at the time of application.
  • Since August 2, 2021, the declaration to provide fingerprints has been omitted, since fingerprints are taken for storage in the document every time an ID card is applied for.
    Exception: Children under the age of 6 will not be fingerprinted.
  • The identity card is produced centrally by Bundesdruckerei GmbH in Berlin.
  • At Hamburg Service you can arrange a pick-up appointment online or by telephone. You can find out what options your Hamburg Service offers on its website, for example.

Processing time

From the time you apply (approx. 15 minutes), it usually takes at least 4 weeks until you can pick up your identity card from Hamburg Service.


  • EUR 37.00 for applicants aged 24 and over

  • EUR 22.80 for applicants under 24 years of age

  • EUR 10.00 for the provisional identity card

  • EUR 13.00 surcharge for applications outside of office hours or not at the main residence

  • EUR 30.00 surcharge for issuance by a consular or diplomatic representation abroad

Reduction or exemption of fees is possible for those in need. This is at the discretion of the identity card authority.

Legal remedies


Legal basis

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Last updated: 12.07.2024