Register a birth

Deadline for registering a birth

Every live birth must be registered within 42 days of the child being born.
The birth must be registered at the Register Office in the district where the birth takes place. For births in Slough, you must register your child at Slough Register Office

If you are unable to attend the Register Office in the district where the birth took place, you can make an appointment at your local Register Office and do a declaration of birth. The local Register Office will take all your details and post the declaration to the Registration District where the birth took place, so the Registration can be completed. Please note that a delay will be experienced in obtaining any birth certificates you may require as these can only be issued after the proper registration is completed.

Booking an appointment

To register a birth at Slough Register Office, you can book an appointment online or alternatively you can contact the Register Office to make an appointment.

Who can register a birth?

  • Either the mother or father, if they are legally married to each other.
  • The mother and father together if they are not legally married to each other.
  • You cannot ask a friend or relative to register the birth on your behalf.

If the mother and father of the child are not legally married to each other at the time of the birth, the father's details may be entered when the mother and father attend together to register the birth.

If the father is unable to attend, the mother is able to register the child without the father's details and then re-register the child together at a later date to add the father.

Alternatively, if the mother or father is unable to attend, he / she may make what is called a Statutory Declaration in front of a Justice of the Peace, Magistrate, Commissioner of Oaths, Practising Solicitor, Notary Public, Licensed Conveyancer, Authorised Advocate or Authorised Litigator. The mother / father will give this signed declaration to the Registrar when she / he registers the child. The form for this declaration is available from any Register Office.

Where either parent has a Court Order or a Parental Responsibility Agreement in respect of the child, the Court Order or Parental Responsibility Agreement must be handed to the Registrar, who will advise on each case as it arises.

If the birth is to be registered with two female parents, please telephone the Register Office for further advice.

Do I need to bring anything with me?

No, however if you are registering at Slough Register Office, it would be helpful if you would bring proof of the parents identity such as a passport or driving licence. This will help us to ensure that the correct full names are entered in the registration and avoid any unnecessary corrections at a later date.

If English is not your first language, you may what to ask a friend or relative to go with you to register.

What will happen at the appointment?

When you register, the Registrar will issue you with a free short birth certificate which shows only the baby’s forenames, surname, sex, date of birth and district of birth.
The Registrar is able to issue you with a full birth certificate, which include the parents details, at a cost of £4 each.

What information does the Registrar need to know?

  • The mother and father's full names, place of birth, occupations and addresses.

This information will be included on the full birth certificate.

You will also be asked to provide the following information which will remain confidential and will not be entered in the register entry or on any birth certificate.

  • If the mother and father are married to each other at the time of birth, the date of the marriage. 
  • The number of children the mother has had previously by her present husband or any former husband
  • The dates of birth of the mother and father.

What surname will the baby have?

Normally the child would be given the surname of the mother or the father. However this decision is up to you to make. Even if the parents are not married to each other and the father does not attend, the child can be given his surname. Once the surname has been decided, it may be changed only when:

  • The parents apply to re- register the child, to have the fathers details included, where they were NOT entered in the original birth registration. 
  • The parents marry each other at any time after the child is born and registered. In this case the birth should be re-registered even if the child’s father's details were entered into the original registration and was given the fathers surname at the time. You are required by law to re-register the baby within three months of the date of the marriage, however even if you are outside of the time limit, you should still re-register the baby, there are no penalties for being late.

For further information please contact contact Slough Register Office.

What if I decide I want to change the child’s forename(s)?

If the registration is less than a year old, you are able to change the spelling of, add additional forenames or remove existing forenames once. The original register will be annotated and a new birth certificate purchased. If the registration is more than a year old, you would need to contact a solicitor and organise a Deed Poll Name Change. For further information please contact Slough Register Office.

Is my child a British Citizen?

Yes - If either parent is a British Citizen or settled for immigration purposes on the date of your childs birth.

No - If neither parent was a British Citizen nor settled for immigration purposes on the date of your childs birth.

If my child is not a British Citizen, how can my child become such a citizen?

Under section 1(3) of the British Nationality Act 1981 a child is entitled to be registered as a British Citizen once either of their parents becomes settled for immigration purposes in this country, or becomes a British Citizen.

If your child was born in the UK before the 1 July 2006, or for further information you should contact the UKBA Nationality Group or phone them on 0845 010 5200.