Re-registering a birth

There are two main situations in which a child’s parents may request the birth to be re-registered:

  • where the child’s natural parents have married each other since the birth. Even if the father’s details were recorded at initial registration and the child was given the father’s surname, it is in the child’s best interests (and a legal requirement) that the birth be re-registered to reflect the parents’ marriage to each other. Failure to do so may affect the legal rights of parents and child
  • where it is the wish of the parents to add the father’s details to the register entry.

If you wish to apply for re-registration of a birth, the relevant forms are available from your local register office.

For re-registration after marriage of the child’s natural parents:

  • the registrar will need to see a certified copy of the child’s full birth certificate and a certified copy of the parents’ marriage certificate. In most cases the marriage certificate will be returned straight away
  • both parents will be required to complete and sign the application form, but only one will need to attend the register office for the re-registration
  • the registrar will make a fresh register entry. At that point the new entry supersedes the original record and all certificates requested from this point on will be issued from the new entry.

For re-registration to add the father’s details:

  • the registrar will need to see a certified copy of the child’s full birth certificate
  • both parents will be required to sign the application form and both will be required to attend the register office together for the re-registration
  • the registrar will make a fresh register entry. At that point the new entry supersedes the original record and all certificates requested from this point on will be issued from the new entry.

Costs

There is no charge to re-register a birth. New short or full certificates may be purchased at the time of re-registration or at any time later (but will then cost more). Please see our Fees page.

Please note that, for all official purposes, only the full birth certificate is accepted.

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