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Re-registering a Birth

This page explains when it is necessary to Re-register a birth, and what information the Registrar will require from you.

What is re-registration?

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Re-registration is the completion of a new record of birth which supersedes an original registration.

Why do I need to re-register my child's birth?

  • If the natural parents marry after the birth of their child they are required under the Legitimacy Act 1976 to apply for the re-registration of their child's birth. Form (LA1).
  • A birth may be re-registered to include the details of the natural father where the parents were not married at the time of the birth, have not married since and no father's name was recorded at the time of the original registration. Form (GRO 185) (10A).

Where can I re-register the birth?

You may attend any Registration Office in England and Wales providing the child was born in England or Wales.

How do I apply?

  1. For re-registration after marriage, a form (LA1) must be completed and signed by both natural parents, but it is only necessary for one of the parents to attend the Registration Office.
  2. To add the natural father's details where parents are not married, a form (GRO185) must be completed and both parents need to attend the office.

(You may attend alone if you can produce a Statutory Declaration from the other parent or a copy of parental responsibility agreement or a court order.)

What information do I need to supply?

  • It is necessary to obtain and complete a form (LA1) or (GRO 185). (These can be obtained from any Registration Office in England and Wales).
  • A copy of the original birth entry.
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable).

Can my child's surnames be changed?

A change of surname may be allowed upon re-registration subject to certain criteria being satisfied. Check with your local Registration Office.

Can my child's forenames be changed?

It may be possible if you can provide documented evidence that the new name has been used in the first 12 months from birth.

When can I re-register the birth?

You will need to complete the forms and then make an appointment to see the registrar.  The registrar will usually be able to authorise the re-registration otherwise it must be authorised by the Registrar General.  The registrar will be able to advise on this.

Is there a fee for re-registration?

No, the re-registration is free but there is the usual charge for the issue of any new certificates.  Ask your local registrar for the current fees.

Further questions?

If you are still unsure about the need to re-register your child's birth or you wish to make an appointment please ring the Information Service on 0300 1234 181 between the hours of 8:30am - 6pm Monday to Friday.

For contact details and opening hours, please see our Registration Offices page.

Registration Service

0300 1234 181