Births, marriages, deaths and nationality Register a birth

Registering your baby

You have a legal responsibility to register your baby within 42 days of the birth.

Please note that since 1 November 2017, due to legislative changes, we no longer issue a free short birth certificate. All certificates must be paid for.

Who can register a birth?

Opposite sex couples

  • If the baby's mother and father were married to each other at the time of the birth, either parent may register.
  • If the mother and father were not married at the time of the birth, the mother may register alone, but the father's details can only be entered if they attend to register together.
  • If this is difficult the mother or father may make a statutory declaration using a prescribed form (please contact us for further details), or the father's details can be added by re-registering the child at a later date. Other people may register the birth in exceptional circumstances. For further information please contact us by email (registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk)

Same sex couples

  • Same sex couples can now become equal legal parents of children they conceive together or conceive through a surrogate.
  • Lesbian couples who are married or civil partners at the time of the conception and conceive a child through artificial insemination will both automatically be treated as their child's legal parents. In these circumstances, either parent may register the birth.
  • Lesbian couples who are not married or civil partners at the time of conception but who conceive together through a fertility clinic in the UK licensed by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority may also be treated as legal parents. In these circumstances, the mother may register the birth alone, but the second parent's details can only be entered if they attend to register together.
  • If this is difficult the mother or second parent may make a statutory declaration using a prescribed form (please contact us for further details), or the second parent's details can be added by re-registering the child at a later date.
  • Other people may register the birth in exceptional circumstances. For further information please contact us by email (registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk)
  • Different options are available to gay men depending on their specific circumstances.

Where should a birth be registered?

A birth should be registered in the district where it occurred. If the birth occurred within the City of Manchester, you need to make an appointment with the Manchester Register Office.

If it is more convenient, details of the birth may be given at another Register Office by making a declaration. In this case your baby's documents will be sent to you in the post from the Manchester Office, when the declaration has been received. If you wish to obtain a copy of the full, standard birth certificate, at a cost of £11, you will need to provide a cheque or postal order, made payable to "Manchester City Council", to the registrar taking the declaration. Alternatively, you can order the certificate online, once the birth has been registered.

Civil Naming Ceremonies

Why not welcome your new arrival with a day to remember, together with your family and friends? If you are interested in having a Civil Naming Ceremony, please contact Manchester Registration Service.

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