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Tel.: 0116 305 6565

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Birth Registration FAQ's


Where and when to register a birth

Every birth in England or Wales must be registered in the Registration District in which it takes place within 42 days of the date of birth. Information for the registration is given to the registrar by the person registering the birth. The information is recorded in the birth register and the person registering the birth signs the record.
You can register a birth that took place anywhere in the areas covered by Leicestershire County Council by going to any of its registration offices. All Leicestershire County Council registration offices work on an appointment basis. You can get an appointment by telephoning the office of your choice.
If it is inconvenient to go to a register office in the Registration District where the birth took place, the information for the registration may be given to a registrar in another district. The registrar will record the registration particulars on a form of declaration and send it to the registrar for the district where the birth occurred. The registrar who receives the declaration will enter the information in the birth register. Certificates of the birth, which may be ordered and paid for at the time of making the declaration, will be posted to you by the registrar for the district where the birth took place.
The baby does not need to be taken to the registrar's office to show that the birth has taken place. The local health authority or the hospital where the birth occurred will notify the registrar of the birth.

Who can register a birth?

Parents married to each other
If the parents of the child were married to each other at the time of the birth (or conception), either the mother or the father may register.
Parents not married to each other
If the parents were not married to each other at the time of the child's birth (or conception), the father's particulars may be entered in the register only in the following circumstances:
  • the mother and father go to the register office and sign the birth register together.
or
  • where the father is unable to go to the register office with the mother-
    the father may make a statutory declaration acknowledging his paternity which the mother must produce to the registrar.
or
  • where the mother is unable to go to the register office with the father-
    the mother may make a statutory declaration acknowledging the father's paternity which the father must produce to the registrar.
or
  • where the mother and father have made a parental responsibility agreement or either has obtained an appropriate court order, the agreement or order should be produced to the registrar by either parent.
If the father's particulars are not recorded in the birth register, it may be possible for the birth to be re-registered to include his details at a later date. You can obtain further information about how to apply for the re-registration of a birth by contacting any registration office for advice.
Other people who may register births
Although the majority of births are registered by the parents, sometimes neither the mother nor the father are able to do this. In these circumstances, the registrar will arrange for the registration to be completed by whichever of the following people is best able to do so:
  • the occupier of the house or hospital where the child was born
  • a person who was present at the birth
  • a person who is responsible for the child

What information needs to be supplied?

Child
  • date and place of birth; if the birth is one of twins, triplets, etc. the time of each child's birth will also be needed
  • sex of the child
  • the forename(s) and surname in which it is intended that the child will be brought up
  • the form giving baby's birthweight and National Health Service Number, which will have been supplied by either the hospital or the midwife
Father
(where this information is to be entered in the register)
  • forename(s) and surname
  • date and place of birth
  • occupation at the time of the child's birth or, if not employed at that time, the last occupation
Mother
  • forename(s) and surname
  • maiden surname if the mother is, or has been, married
  • date and place of birth
  • occupation at the time of the child's birth or, if not employed at that time, the last occupation
  • usual address at the date of the birth
  • date of marriage, if married to the child's father at the time of the birth
  • number of previous children by the present husband and by any former husband /partner.
Babies Hands ImageIt is most important that the information recorded in the birth register is correct. If any mistake is made, for example in the spelling of a name or surname or in the description of the father's or mother's occupation, it will give the parents or other person who registered the birth some trouble to have it put right. The person registering the birth should check the information to be recorded in the register very carefully before the entry is signed.
If English is not the mother's or father's first language and help is needed with registering the birth, it would be helpful for a relative or friend to accompany them to the registrar's office and act as interpreter. However, the parents must register the birth personally as a relative or friend cannot register instead of them.
You can obtain further information about correcting particulars in a birth registration by contacting any registration office for advice.

What certificates will be issued?

After a birth has been registered, a short birth certificate showing the name, sex, date and district of birth is issued free of charge. A standard birth certificate, showing full details in the register, is also available and is now required when applying for a passport. Further short certificates and standard certificates may be bought at the time of registration or at any time afterwards. You can obtain further information about obtaining certificates by clicking on the links below.

How do I register a birth after 12 months?

If a birth occurs in England and Wales and has not been registered within 12 months of its occurrence it is possible for the late registration of the birth to be authorised by the Registrar General provided certain requirements can be met.
Before the Registrar General can authorise a late registration of a birth he must be satisfied, by documentary evidence, of the child's exact date and place of birth. There must also be a person available who can attend any Register Office in England and Wales to give the information for the registration.
How to apply
To apply for the late registration of an unregistered birth in England an Application for Late Registration (Form C45) should be completed. For an unregistered birth in Wales an Application for Late Registration (Form C45W) should be completed. You can get the form from any registration office.
The application form explains in more detail the information you will need to provide and any documents you may need to send, with the completed application form, to enable a late registration of your birth to be considered.
The completed application form and the documents requested should be sent to Corrections & Re-registration Section at the General Register Office. If you have any questions please contact this section.
No fee is charged for authorising a late registration however, if you want to buy certificates, in addition to the short certificate issued free on registration, the normal certificate fees will apply. You can also obtain certificates locally from the Register Office where the birth was registered.

Where can I get further advice on registering a birth?

If you need help understanding any of this information or if you are uncertain about how to register a birth, your local registrar will gladly give you further advice. You can contact us by calling 0116 305 6565 or by using the Feedback Form.
Alternatively, further information may be obtained from the General Register Office website.

Page Last Updated: 16 April 2009