Registering a birth in Barcelona
Knowing how to register a birth (inscripción de nacimiento) in Spain is essential for anyone thinking of starting, or adding to a family. Though relatively straightforward, there are some important points to keep in mind.
The period for registering a birth is between 24 hours and eight days after the birth, though up to 30 days is allowed in extreme circumstances. After that time, you must apply for a late registration file (inscripción de nacimiento fuera de plazo).
In Barcelona, births must be registered at the Civil Registry Office located at:
Plaça Duc de Medinaceli, 2, 08002 Barcelona; tel. 93 412 0474; fax: 93 342 6171
It is the parents' responsibility to ensure registration takes place and it should be carried out in person, but can also be done by a close family member.
When registering a birth within a marriage, the following documentation is required:
• Medical delivery report (this form is provided by the hospital where the delivery took place or by the midwife in the case of a homebirth).
• NIE (Foreign identity number) or DNI (National Spanish ID) of the parents.
• Libro de Familia, the Family Book that is presented to all married couples in Spain. It contains the full history of the parents and children of the family. If you didn't get married here, you'll need your marriage certificate duly legalised and translated into Spanish. If you are not married, you will be given a Libro de Familia when you have registered the birth of your first child and received their birth certificate.
When registering a birth outside a marriage, a declaration is required from both parents, and the father and the mother must both go to register the birth in person, taking with them the following documentation:
• Medical delivery report (see above)
• NIE or DNI of the parents
• Libro de Familia (if the couple already has a child born in Spain)
In addition, in this case, the mother's marital status has to be recorded. If she has been previously married, the legal presumption of paternity must be removed by providing: a marriage certificate (with the corresponding note), and the separation or divorce decree (witnessed). In the case of a de facto separation, two witnesses must accompany the mother to the Register.
Babies born in Spain are registered in an official book, and the birth certificate will feature information about the volume and page on which a particular baby is registered. There are two types of certificate:
• Short/Abridged (extracto de inscripción de nacimiento or certificado simple), which contains the date of birth, the names of the child and parents, and the registration number.
• Full birth certificates (certificado literal de nacimiento): full certificates may be needed for registration with the Consulate of a baby born to foreign national resident in Spain.
More information in English can be found on the Spanish Ministry of Justice website here.