Registering the Birth

Find out how to register the birth of your newborn baby…

The birth must be registered within one week at the registry office (Standesamt) of the district where the child was born. The birth can be registered by the following people:

  • The midwife who was present at the birth
  • The father if he has joint parental responsibility
  • The doctor who was present
  • Any other person present at the birth or who has been informed of the birth
  • The mother once she is physically able to do so
  • In some cases officials visit hospital maternity units and can register the birth during the mother's hospital stay

In order to register the birth the following documents are required but it is a good idea to check with the registration office to see if they require any further information:

  • Confirmation of the birth (Geburtsbescheinigung) given by the hospital, doctor or midwife
  • A copy of the birth and marriage certificates of the parents. Some registry offices require official German translations of these documents while others will accept the original versions

Normally several copies of the birth registration document (Geburtsurkunde) are given for official purposes (such as for child benefit or health insurance). A parent may request (and pay for) additional copies which may be needed in future years when the parents and child may no longer live in the country. An international birth certificate (in French, German and English) should be available from all registry offices at no extra charge. This can save the expense of having a birth certificate produced by the embassy of the child's nationality. The registry office will also automatically inform the relevant tax authorities of the child's birth so that income tax data can be changed.

The birth registration document is used to obtain identity cards, passports and make registration at nurseries and schools.