Birth registration

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Re-registering births

It may be possible to change or add to the information recorded at the time of an original birth registration.

If you want to add the natural father’s details to your child's birth record, you must re-register your child’s birth.

Application by mother or father

You can add the natural father's details to a new record of your child's birth where:

  • your child was born in England or Wales
  • you and the father were not married to each other at the date of your child's birth and since that date you have not married each other
  • the existing record does not show any father's particulars

The new record is made at the register office for the district where your child was born (usually the register office which issued the original birth certificate), where one of the following circumstances can be met:

  • you and the natural father give joint information for the new entry
  • you or the natural father give sole information for the new entry having produced either a Statutory Declaration of Parentage, a Parental Responsibility Agreement made by both parents or a court order identifying the father

The new record is made on the personal attendance of you or the father, either at the register office for the district where your child was born, or by you or the father attending before a registrar for some other district in England and Wales and making a declaration of the particulars to be registered.

The new record replaces the original record and future birth certificates are issued from the new record.

The form should be filled in and signed by the child's mother or the child's natural father.

If neither parent is able to make the application and another person is giving information, or if a Declaration of Parentage has been obtained from a County Court or the High Court, please contact the General Register Office.

Application by natural parents following their marriage

You cab make a new record of your child's birth showing your child to be a child of your marriage, where:

  • your child was born in England or Wales
  • your child has been legitimated by the marriage

The new record is made at the register office for the district where your child was born (usually the register office where the original birth certificate was issued). The new record may be made by one of you attending either the original register office or some other register office in England and Wales and making a declaration of the particulars required to be registered.

The new record is made on the authority of the registrar general, which may be granted by the registrar making the new record (that is the registrar in whose district the place of birth is situated), or your application will be referred to the General Register Office.

The new birth record replaces the original record and future birth certificates are issued from the new record.

If you are the child's natural parents and are now husband and wife, you must apply via this procedure.

A step-father, adoptive father or someone else cannot sign as the child's father, only the natural father, if he is the mother's husband.

If one of the parents has died, the birth can be registered again if the father's name was entered on the original birth record, or if there has been a legal ruling as to who is the actual father.

If the child has died, it is possible to register the birth again if the child was living at the time of the parents' marriage.

Changing a child's name

If you have evidence that your child has used new forenames within 12 months of the original birth registration, then it may be possible to record the forenames. You may be able to change your child's surname in some circumstances. Ask the registrar to explain by contacting the General Register Office.

Fees

There is no charge for the re-registration of the birth but the usual fee will be charged for any certificates issued.