A baby's birth must, by law, be registered within 42 days of the date of 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 Registration Office (see the right hand column for details). You can also find the details on the Opening Times page.
- If your baby was born outside of Powys, you can still come to a Registration Office in Powys to do a "birth declaration". You will also need to bring a cheque or postal order for the appropriate fee made payable to the relevant Registration District. The Registration Service can advise you about this. The documentation will be posted by first class mail to the Registration Office covering the area where your baby was born and that office will issue the birth certificate and return it to you by post. If you require the birth certificate urgently, it will be quicker for you to go back to where the baby was born and register the birth in person.
It is most important that the information recorded in the register is correct. You will be given a draft copy of the registration page to check before the registration is complete and you should check it carefully for any errors. If a mistake is made, for example in the spelling of a name, the correction may take some time as we have to seek the permission of the General Register Office to make the correction.
Information the registrar will 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
- Mum'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 dad'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).
What certificates will I get?
After the registration, you will be given a short birth certificate. One short birth certificate is issued free of charge. In order to apply for a passport for the baby, or open a bank account etc you will need to request a full birth certificate, which is the complete copy of the entry in the register. Further short and full birth certificates can be purchased at the time of registration or at any time afterwards. Please see the Fees page for further details of costs.
Can fathers register a birth?
If the baby's mum and dad are married to each other at the time of the birth, the dad can register the birth. If they are not, dad's details can only be entered into the register in the following ways:
If mum and dad both attend at the registration service point to register the birth.
If dad cannot attend, it is possible for him to make a statutory declaration acknowledging paternity which must be shown to the Registration Officer. Copies of the declaration form can be obtained from any Registration Officer in England and Wales (a declaration must also be made at the time of registration).
If mum cannot attend at the Registration Office, 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 mum and dad have made a parental responsibility agreement, or either has obtained an appropriate court order - this should be produced to the Registration Officer and the birth registered by either of them.
If mum 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.
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.