A baby's birth must, by law, be registered within 42 days of the date of birth.
How do I register a birth?
- In some circumstances you may be able to register the birth before you leave hospital (the hospital staff will advise on this).
- You can register the birth at your local registrar's office. There is a link on this page which gives details of your nearest registration service point in Shropshire. An appointment should be made by telephoning 0345 678 9016 or by using our electronic appointment booking system, by following the link below.
- You can go to any other registrar's office in England or Wales and have the birth registered by 'declaration.' If you do this, any birth certificates you may want will be posted to you.
Can a father register a birth?
If the baby's mother and father are married to each other at the time of the birth, the father can register the birth. If they are not, the father's details can be entered into the register in the following ways:
- If the mother and father both attend at the registration service point to register the birth.
- If the father cannot attend, it is possible for him to make a statutory declaration acknowledging paternity which must be shown to the registrar. Copies of the declaration form can be obtained from any registrar in England and Wales (a declaration must also be made at the time of registration).
- If the mother cannot attend at the registrar's, she can make a statutory declaration acknowledging the father's paternity which he can produce. He will also have to make a declaration at the time of registration.
- Where the mother and father have made a parental responsibility agreement, or either has obtained an appropriate court order - this should be produced to the registrar and the birth registered by either of them.
If the mother is not married to the baby's father she is not normally obliged to have his details included in the entry. It may be possible to add them later if desired.
What information will the Registrar need?
- Date and place of birth
- Sex of the baby
- Forename/s and surname in which it is intended the baby will be brought up
- Mother's forename/s and surname (and maiden surname for mothers who are or have been married); date and place of birth; usual address at the date of birth; occupation (optional); date of marriage (if married to the baby's father at the time of birth); number of previous children
- Where the father's details are to be entered in the register, the registrar will need to know his forename and surname, date and place of birth, and occupation at the time of birth (or last occupation)
It is most important that the information recorded in the register is correct. If a mistake is made, for example in the spelling of a name, it will cause you some trouble to have it corrected later, therefore, entries should be checked very carefully before signing.
If English is not your first language, please feel free to bring a friend or relative with you to help. But you must register the birth personally, you cannot ask a friend or relative to attend instead of you.
What certificates will I get?
After the registration, you will be given a short birth certificate. These are issued free of charge and will meet most ordinary needs, though a full birth certificate, which is the complete copy of the entry in the register, is also available and is required for passport applications.
Further short and full birth certificates can be purchased at the time of registration or at any time afterwards.
Is there a fee for the registration process?
Registration of a birth is free of charge and you will receive a short birth certificate as part of this process. If you require additional copy certificates they can be purchased at the time of registration, or at any time afterwards.
The fees for additional birth certificates from 1 April 2012 are:
- Full birth certificate at the time of registration - £4.00 each
- Short birth certificate at the time of registration - £4.00 each
- Full birth certificate applied for within one month of registration - £7.00 each
- Short birth certificate applied for within one month of registration - £7.00 each
- Full birth certificate applied for at least one month after registration - £10.00 each
- Short birth certificate applied for at least one month after registration - £10.00 each
Please follow the Copy certificates application link on this page for further details.
Re-registering a birth
There are two reasons why you should re-register a birth that has already been registered:
- If the natural parents of the child get married after the child has been born and registered. The re-registration will update the birth certificate.
- If the natural father's details are not be on the original certificate, perhaps because he was not present at the time. Re-registration will update the birth certificate to include his details.