Requirement and instructions for the document photo

Taking a document photo at the service office

Photo booth

A document photo can be taken for free in the photo booth in all service offices (except for Keila and Kolde) even if you do not want to submit an application at the service office. Depending on the application to be submitted, fingerprints and signature sample can also be provided in the photo booth.

The photograph taken in the photo booth is digital and it can be used within 183 days for applications submitted at any service office, by mail or email (except for weapons permit). If you submit the application by mail or email and took the photo in the photo booth at the service office, specify the relevant information on the application.

Take the photo without wearing glasses – otherwise there may be reflection on the photo, which is not allowed.

Document photo for a young child

When applying for a document for a young child, we advise taking the photo at a photographer’s studio. Photographing a very young child in the booth may not be a practical option as the height of the camera cannot be adjusted. When taking pictures of a young child in the booth, don’t hesitate to ask an official to assist you. If you take the document photo at home, make sure it meets the requirements.

Document photo for wheelchair users

A document applicant who is in a wheelchair can use the photo booth. An official can assist you if needed in entering the booth and adjusting the camera angle.

General requirements for the document photo

When applying for a document, please submit a digital document photo

A digital document photo is:

  • colour
  • a minimum of 1300 x 1600 pixels
  • 1MB minimum and 5MB maximum
  • a JPEG
  • no older than six months

A good document photo means that the picture:

  • is a frontal portrait view
  • is on a light, advisably grey backdrop
  • is sharp and in focus
  • has a neutral expression
  • the person’s face makes up 70-80% of the height of the photo

Glasses and headwear on the document photo

  • Glasses may not reflect light
  • You should not wear headphones
  • People may wear headwear on the photo if dictated by religious reasons
  • If headwear is worn for religious reasons, a written opinion from the Ministry of the Interior must be submitted
  • The headwear may not cast shadows on the person’s face

A good document photo of a young child

A good document photo means that the young child on the photo:

  • is a frontal portrait view
  • has a neutral expression
  • is on a light, advisably grey backdrop
  • is looking into the camera with eyes open
  • the child’s face makes up 70-80% of the height of the photo

The following are not suitable for a document photo:

  • a scanned photo
  • an edited/processed photo
  • a blurry photo
  • a black and white photo

For more photo samples, see the guidelines here and here.