Declaration of the birth of your child (2023)

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After you have registered your child, you will receive an unabridged/complete birth certificate free of charge. If you are in South Africa, you must register your child with ATAMinistry of Internal Affairs(DHA), and if you are abroad, you must register your child in aSouth African embassy or consulate.


If you are married, the child will be registered under the father's surname. For unmarried parents, your child can be registered under the surname of both parents.Declaration of the birth of your child (2)

Please note: There are no costs associated with registering the birth of your child, nor for the first birth certificate after registration.

Before you sign up

As a parent, guardian or other person legally responsible for a child, you must register your child within 30 days. You must do the following:

  • complete and submit form BI-24 to a Department of Home Affairs (DHA) office if you are in South Africa, or to a South African embassy or consulate if you are abroad,
  • bring your ID card and
  • bring a copy of your marriage certificate.

How to register

If you do not register your child within the first 30 days, you will need to provide more information for registration. These types of birth registration fall into one of the following categories:

1. After 30 days, but 1 year ago

  • Form BI-24 must be completed and submitted with written reasons why the birth was not registered in the birth register, in accordance with the provisionsThe Civil Status Act of 1992.
  • The request will then be forwarded to DHA headquarters for the assignment of an identification number and archiving.

2. After 1 year, but 15 years ago

If the child is over one year old, but still under 15 years old, it is necessary to complete the form BI -24/1 and submit it together with the written reasons why the birth was not reported within 30 days .

To facilitate confirmation of the child's identity and status, the following documentation will be taken into account:

  • Certificate from the hospital or maternity hospital where the child was born. The certificate must be signed by the responsible person and contain the official seal of the institution,
  • official confirmation of the child's personal data, taken from the register of the first school the child attended. The certificate must be on official school letterhead, signed by the principal, and bear the school's official seal.
  • your child's birth certificate,
  • sworn statements from the parents, or, if these are not available, from a close relative who is at least ten years older than the child and is aware of the child's birth details,
  • report from the social worker if the child is abandoned,
  • clinic card,
  • schoolrapporten, of
  • any other supporting documents that may help prove the child's identity and citizenship.

When submitting the forms, we request that you include as many of these documents as possible.

After submitting your application, you will be interviewed and your fingerprints will be checked against a national database.

If successful, your application will be forwarded to DHA Headquarters for identification number allocation and filing.

3. After 15 yearsDeclaration of the birth of your child (3)

If you are over 15 years old and you are not registered in the birth register, you must attach an application for birth registration to the request for the issuance of an identity card (form BI-9). You will need:

  • complete forms DHA-24, DHA-24/A x 2 and DHA-288 for birth registration,
  • submit accompanying documentation, as well as written reasons why the birth was not registered within 30 days of birth, and
  • you must be a South African citizen or holder of a permanent residence permit, with a valid South African identity card.

Declaration of the birth of a married child (parents are married at the time of birth)

Children born from a marriage can, with the consent of both parents, be registered under the joint surname of father and mother.

You will need:

After registering the birth of a child, an unabridged birth certificate is issued free of charge, usually 1-2 days after submitting the application for registration.

Contact details

If you need more information you can:

Delivered to: These object categories:

Made possible by:

Government institution: (Government of South Africa)

There are no costs associated with registering the birth of your child, nor for the first birth certificate after registration.

The content on this page was last updated on January 29, 2020


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