Birth Certificates and Registration

Understand how to register the birth of a new child and whether a child born in Switzerland is eligible for Swiss citizenship...

All births in Switzerland are recorded in the birth register. The registrar also creates a new record for adopted children.

Births need to be registered within three days at the registry office of the district (Bezirk/commune) where the birth took place. This can be done by the hospital but if the birth took place in another canton or if it was a home birth, it will need to be done by the mother, father, the midwife, doctor or any other person who was present at the birth.

If the father is not married to the mother, he can register the birth only if he has acknowledged paternity before the birth or if he does so when he registers the birth.

Swiss Citizenship

Swiss citizenship is automatically granted only to the natural or adopted child of a married Swiss national (only one parent need be Swiss). Citizenship is also granted to the baby of an unmarried Swiss mother. Babies born in Switzerland to foreign nationals are not automatically granted Swiss citizenship.

  • For further information from the Swiss government: Click here

Required Documents for Birth Registration

Married parents:

  • Family register (Familienbuechlein/livret de famille) or marriage certificate
  • Passports of both parents
  • Residence permits
  • Fee
  • A registration form completed at the Civil Registrar's Office (Zivilstandsamt)
  • Residents of Geneva will need a certificat de domicile, issued by the Office Cantonale de la Population (OCP)

Unmarried parents:

The birth registration process varies from case to case. The registry office in the district where the child is born will provide information.

In most cases the following documents will be needed:

  • Mother's birth certificate
  • A document showing the mother's civil status, for example an individual certificate of civil status, a divorce decree or the death certificate of a husband if he died in Switzerland
  • A certificate of domicile
  • Passport
  • Residence permit

Administrative Offices

Basel

  • Zivilstandsamt (in German)
    At: Rittergasse 11, 4051 Basel
    Tel: 061 267 95 90
    Fax: 061 267 67 49
    email

Berne

Lucerne

  • Zivilstandsamt
    At
    : Obergrundstrasse 1, 6003 Luzern
    Tel: 041 208 81 11

Z├╝rich

  • Zivilstandsamt (in German)
    At
    : Molkenstrasse 5/9, Amtshaus Helvetiaplatz, 8022 Zurich
    Tel: 044 412 31 50

Zug

  • Zivilstandsamt Kreis Zug
    At
    : Kolinplatz 19, 6300 Zug
    Tel: 041 728 15 15

Geneva

  • Geneva Civil Registrar's Office
    At
    : 37 rue de la Mairie, 1211 Geneva
    Tel. +41 (0)22 418 66 50
    Fax +41 (0)22 418 66 51
    Open: Monday to Friday 08:30 to 11:45 and 13:00 to 16:00
    email
  • Geneva OCP
    At
    : 88 route de Chancy, 1213 Onex
    Open: Monday to Friday 09:00 to 15:30
    Tel: +41 (0)22 546 48 88
    Fax: +41 (0)22 546 48 10