The birth certificate (Geburtsurkunde) is an important piece of paperwork for everyone in Germany. This page looks at how to get birth certificates for newborn children, and how to replace lost birth certificates.
Birth certificates in Germany
In Germany, birth certificates are automatically issued to the parents of newborn children when they register the birth. This must be done within one week of giving birth.
Birth certificates are important documents in Germany, and expats often need them for various administrative procedures, including:
- Registering your address
- Opening a bank account
- Getting a German passport
- Getting an ID card
- Getting married
- Getting divorced
- Registering at a hospital during pregnancy
- Applying for child benefits & parental allowance
Replacing a lost birth certificate
Whether the result of your family having moved house or just a haphazard filing system, you may find that you’ve misplaced a birth certificate. Or, you might just need an extra copy. Luckily, it’s relatively easy to replace a lost birth certificate in Germany.
To get a new one, you need to apply to the registry office (Standesamt) in the town where you or your child were born. You can sometimes do this online; alternatively, you need to attend in person. They can then issue an extract from their register. You will have to pay administration fees of around 10 euros. You will also need to bring:
- Valid ID, such as a passport (not a driving licence)
- Copy of your birth certificate or alternative document with proof of your identity
Foreign-language birth certificates
It is also possible to be issued with an international birth certificate (Internationale Geburtsurkunde), which is a multi-language version of the birth certificate that can be used abroad without needing to be translated.