Congratulations on your new baby! Here is the information you need about a small but important task in the weeks ahead: registering the birth of your new baby.

Sections in this guide (click title to view)

1. Registering the birth of your baby

When to register your baby's birth

When your baby is born, you must register their birth with the local registrar where the birth took place within 42 days.

It is important that parents do not wait more than a week or two from the date of birth to book an appointment to register the birth.

020 7926 9420
Lambeth Register Office - 9am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.

What you need to bring to your appointment

  • Passports or valid ID at the time of birth
  • The discharge notes or red book from the hospital

What we need to register your baby

Information about the child:

  • the date and place of birth; if the birth is one of twins, triplets etc the times of each child's birth will also be needed.
  • the sex of the child
  • the first names(s) and surname (family name) in which it is intended that the child will be brought up

Information about the mother

  • first name(s) and surname (family name)
  • maiden surname if married or has been married
  • date and place of birth
  • job at the time of the child's birth, or, or if not employed at that time the last job
  • address at the time of birth
  • date of marriage, if married to the child's father at the time of birth
  • number of previous children

If the father's details are to be included in the register, we need to know:

  • first name(s) and surname (family name)
  • date and place of birth
  • job at the time of the child's birth or if not employed at that time the last job
  • address at the time of birth

Please remember that the information you give us is very important and should be correct. You will be asked to check the information before you sign the register. Make sure you do this carefully. If mistakes are made for example in the spelling of names, it is difficult to change them later.

Who can register the birth

If the parents are married at the time of the birth or conception, the mother or father can register the birth on their own and include both parents' details.

If the parents aren't married, the details of both parents can be included on the birth certificate if they do one of the following:

  • sign the birth register together
  • one parent completes a statutory declaration of parentage form and the other takes the signed form to register the birth
  • one parent goes to register the birth with a court order giving the father parental responsibility.

If the mother isn't married to the father, she can choose to register the birth on her own. The father's details won't be included on the birth certificate.

It might be possible to add the father's details at a later date by completing an application for the re-registration of a child's birth.

Cost of certificates

  • You may purchase as many certificates as you like at the time of registration for a fee of £4.
  • The day after registration the price increases to £7 until such time as the Register is completed.
  • Once the Register has been completed and deposited, the cost of any further certificates that you may wish to purchase will be £10.

Alternative ways to register your baby's birth

If your baby was born in Lambeth, you should register the birth with us. But if you can't get to us, you can give the details to any Register Office in England and Wales.

They will send the information onto us. We will register the birth and can send you the birth certificate and other documents in the post.

Visit the General Register Office website to search for your local office.

If you require any additional birth certificates please make a cheque or postal order payable to 'London Borough of Lambeth' for the amount of £4 for each extra certificate (certificate price at the time of registration).

The Lambeth Register Office is the busiest registration service in London so it is not uncommon for parents to go to a more local register office to where they live to make a declaration of the birth.

2. Non Married/Civil Partners (Female only)

Same-sex couples

Male couples must get a parental order from the court before they can be registered as parents. Female couples can include both their names on their child’s birth certificate when registering the birth - the rules are different depending on whether or not they’re in a civil partnership.

Female civil partners

Either woman can register the birth on her own if all of the following are true:

  • the mother has a child by donor insemination or fertility treatment
  • she was in a civil partnership at the time of the treatment
  • her civil partner is the child’s legal parent

Female non-civil partners

When a mother isn't in a civil partnership, her partner can be seen as the child’s second parent if both women:

  • are treated together in the UK by a licensed clinic
  • have made a ‘parenthood agreement’

However, for both parents’ details to be recorded on the birth certificate, they must do one of the following:

  • register the birth jointly
  • complete a ‘Statutory declaration of acknowledgement of parentage’ form and one parent takes the signed form when she registers the birth
  • get a document from the court (for example, a court order) giving the second female parent parental responsibility and one parent shows the document when she registers the birth

3. Tell Us Once service

Tell Us Once is a service enabling local authorities to offer a bereavement and birth registration service which puts you at the heart of what we do.

We have a specialist team to provide additional help/information to new parents. This includes:

  • Child Benefit Application Completion, Verifying Birth Certificate and submission service
  • informing Jobcentre Plus, Housing Benefits and Revenues and Customs (HMRC) of the change in circumstance
  • registering new parents with Family Information Service (FIS) and the Library Service.

Speak to us when you are registering the birth if you are interested in using this service. (check with team this is the way to access this service)

4. How to re-register a birth

Depending on the circumstances, it may be possible to change the details or add information recorded at the time of the original birth registration.

Re-registration for father’s name

If the parents were not married to each other at the time of the birth and the father did not attend to register the baby, it is possible to re-register the birth to include the father's details in the registration and change the surname of the child.

  • A form is available from this office that has to be completed by both parents.
  • The easiest way for a birth to be re-registered is for both parents to attend the Register Office together after making an appointment.
  • It is possible for either parent to make a statutory declaration, before a solicitor or other person able legally to witness an oath, acknowledging parentage of the child.
  • It is also possible for either parent to seek a Court Order naming the father.

Re-registration if parents are now married

If the parents got married since the birth, the birth should be re-registered to accurately record the legal status of the child.

  • A form is available from the Register Office that must be signed by both parents.
  • Either parent can then attend the Register Office, after making an appointment, with the completed form and a copy of the marriage certificate.
  • The birth will then be re-registered and the child's surname can be changed as part of this process.
  • Certified copies of the re-registered birth can be purchased from the registrar.

If the parents were not married to each other at the time of the birth and it was decided to give the child the father's surname, whether or not he attended with the mother, it is not possible to change the surname in the registration back to that of the mother.

5. Make an appointment

We offer appointments from 9am to 4pm, Monday to Friday. The Register Office is closed on the first Wednesday of every month until 1pm.

We will aim to see you within 10 minutes of your appointment time, if you arrive on time.

329 Redfearn Centre
Kennington Lane
SE11 5QY
Telephone: 020 7926 9420
Contact our Registrar Service