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How do I re-register a birth?

Question:
How do I re-register a birth?
Answer:

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

To show that the parents are now married

If the natural parents have married each other since the birth was registered, the birth should be re-registered to accurately record the current legal status of the child.

A form can be obtained from registration Services which needs to be signed by both parents. Either parent can then attend the register office with the completed form and a copy of the marriage certificate. The birth can then be re-registered and the child's surname can be changed as part of this process. Copies of the re-registered birth certificate can then be purchased from the registrar.

Adding the father's details to the birth record

If the child's natural parents were not married at the time of the birth and the father did not attend with the mother to register the birth of the baby, the birth record can be amended at any time to include the father's details and to change the surname of the child. A form can be obtained from Registration Services.

The easiest way for a birth to be re-registered is for both parents to attend at a register office together. It is possible however for either parent to make a statutory declaration before a solicitor or other person able to legally witness an oath to acknowledge parentage of the child. It is also possible for either parent to obtain a court order naming the father. In any of these situations, the birth will be registered again and copies of the re-registered certificate can be purchased from the registrar.

If the parents were not married to each other at the time of the birth and it was decided to give the child the father's name (whether or not he attended the initial registration with the mother) it is not always possible to change the child's surname back to that of the mother. The only alternative would be to speak to a solicitor to make a statutory declaration or deed poll changing the name of the child. This would not change the entry on the original birth register.

The statutory declaration or deed poll should however be attached to the birth certificate to show that the child has been brought up with a surname different to that shown on the original birth record.

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