Correct a birth registration

1. What corrections can be made

You can apply for a birth registration correction when the information is wrong - for example if a mistake was made when recording a parent’s occupation.

You can’t apply for a correction to show new information if circumstances change after you’ve registered your child’s birth, for example if you change your name after getting married again.

However, you can apply to re-register the birth if the natural parents get married at a later date.

Where to apply

In England and Wales you can apply for a correction to either:

  • the register office where your child’s birth was registered - for minor mistakes in a parent’s occupation, birthplace or address

  • the General Register Office (GRO) - for mistakes involving things like names

There’s a different process for correcting registrations made in Northern Ireland and Scotland.

If you’re not sure where to apply in England or Wales, contact the relevant register office or the GRO.

Telephone: 0300 123 1837
Textphone: 18001 0300 123 1837
Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm
Saturday, 9am to 4pm
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Removing the wrong father’s details

You can only apply to change who the father is if a DNA test proves (or a court order says) that the man named on the certificate isn’t the natural father.

You must apply to the GRO for this type of change.

What happens if you change gender

If you get your gender change approved, you’ll get a new short birth certificate with your new gender on it. It’s free.

What the correction looks like

If your application is approved, a correction is made in the register in the office for the area where your child was born.

The original information will always be shown in the register. After the correction has been authorised, a note will be added to the margin of the register. This will explain what the correct information is and when the correction was made.

All full birth certificates that are issued after the correction will include the note in the margin.

Short birth certificates only include the child’s details and won’t have a note in the margin - they just show any correct new details.