Procedure for a single father to register birth for his child

Procedure for a single father to register birth for his child
Posted date: 05/01/2024

Legal situation: My girlfriend and I are students, living and studying in Ho Chi Minh City. We have a child unintentionally. Both families were aware and agreed that after giving birth, we would have a wedding. We were eagerly anticipating the birth of our child. However, after giving birth, my girlfriend left without any reason. Neither family has been able to find her, and I am raising the child on my own. I would like to ask the lawyer if, given that we are not married and the mother has left, can I, as the father, apply for the birth certificate for my child. I look forward to receiving a prompt response!


FDVN Opinions:


Thank you for concerning and sending your question to FDVN Law Firm (“FDVN”). After studying the relevant legal provisions, we would like to present our opinion as follows:


[1] Obligation on registering the birth of a child


According to Article 15 of Law on Civil Status 2014, “Within 60 days after the birth of their child, the father or mother shall register the child’s birth; if the parents are unable to register their child’s birth, the grandfather or grandmother or another relative or the individual or organization that is nurturing the child shall register his/her birth.” Accordingly, within 60 days after the birth of your child, you - the child’s father - has the obligation to register the child’s birth. If you are unable to do so, the relatives such as grandparents shall carry out this procedure.


It is also clarified in Article 15 of Decree No. 123/2015/NĐ-CP regarding Birth registration for children with unidentified parents as follows:


“1. The People’s Committee of the commune where the child resides shall apply for birth registration for the child with unidentified parents.


2. If a child’s father is unidentified, the family name, race, native place, nationality of the child in the application for birth registration shall be determined according to the respective information of his/her mother; the child’s father section in vital records and birth certificate shall be left blank.


3. If the father, at the time of application for birth registration, applies for recognition of father-child relationship as prescribed in Clause 1 Article 25 of the Law on civil status, the People’s Committee shall both process the recognition and birth registration; birth registration contents shall be determined as prescribed in Clause 1 Article 4 of this Decree.


4. In case of a child whose mother is unidentified, if his/her child applies for both birth registration and recognition of parent-child relationship, Clause 3 of this Article shall apply; the child’s mother section in the vital records and birth certificate shall be left blank.


5. Procedures for birth registration for children with unidentified parents other than those who are abandoned shall be consistent with Clause 3 Article 14 hereof; the phrase “children with unidentified parents" shall be specified in the vital records.”


Accordingly, in this case, you can still register the birth of your child independently. In this process, you may combine it with the procedures for adopting a child as stipulated by Law on Civil Status. In this case, the household registration book and the birth certificate will leave the section pertaining to the mother blank.


[2] Procedure for the single father to register his child’s birth


According to Law on Civil Status 2014:


Step 1: The applicant submits a set of documents for registering birth and acknowledging the father, mother, and child to the local household registration office (People's Committee at the commune where you reside). The dossier includes:


- Birth registration form and acknowledgment of the father, mother, and child according to the prescribed form;


-Birth certificate or alternative documents (Statement from the witness confirming the birth; if there is no witness, a sworn statement about the birth is required; in the case of registering a foundling, a confirmation record of the child being abandoned by the competent authority is necessary; for children born through surrogacy, there must be a document proving the surrogacy according to legal regulations).


- Evidence of parent-child relationship:


+ Documents from health authorities, inspection agencies, or other competent authorities in Vietnam or abroad confirming the parent-child relationship.


+ In cases where documents specified in paragraph 1 of this Article are not available, there must be letters, photos, films, tapes, discs, or other items proving the parent-child relationship and a written statement from the parents affirming the child as their common child, with at least two close relatives of the parents testifying.


Step 2: After receiving all the mentioned documents, if the process of acknowledging the parent-child relationship is found to be accurate and uncontested, the household registration officer records it in the Household Registration Book within three working days of the date of receiving the complete documentation. To extract records for the application, the person registering the parent-child connection and the legal official both sign the Household Registration Book and report to the Chairman of the Commune People's Committee. If an extension is needed for verification, it can be granted for a maximum of five working days.


When the birth information is correct and complete, the household registration officer enters the information in the Household Registration Book in accordance with the law. They also update the national population database and the electronic household registration database to get the Personal Identification Number. The Household Registration Book is signed by the registration officer, as well as the individual recording the birth.


Step 3: The Chairman of the Commune People's Committee concurrently issues both the applicant's birth certificate and an extract from the register of the parent-child relationship.


The above is the advisory opinion of FDVN regarding your request based on the research of legal regulations. We hope it will be helpful to you.


Thanh Trà – FDVN Law Firm



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