If the parents were married to each other at the time of the birth, either the mother or the father can register the baby.
However, if the parents were not married to each other, the father’s details can usually only be entered in the register if the mother and the father attend the Register Office together to register.
If you are not married and you want the father’s details to be on the birth registration and he is unable to attend for any reason, please contact the Register Office for further advice.
From 1 December 2003 there was a change of law, which made it easier for unmarried fathers to get equal parental responsibility. For this both parents need to register the birth of your baby together.
Parental responsibility for your child gives you important legal rights as well as responsibilities. Without it, you do not have any right to be involved in decisions such as where they live, their education, religion or medical treatment. With parental responsibility, you are treated in law as the child’s parent and you take equal responsibility in bringing them up.
Parentline Plus has a free helpline where you can talk through the options and ask for advice. You can call them on 0808 800 2222 or Textphone 0800 783 6783.