Registry Office - Standesamt

Where do I have to go if I would like to register my newly born child or if I plan to get married?

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Responsibilities of the Registry Office (Standesamt)

A Registry Office (Standesamt) has multiple responsibilities. There, parents have to register the birth of their child in person. The Registry Office is also involved if one wishes to get married. It will likewise issue the relevant certificates.

If a child is born and the parents are not married, the Registry office does the Acknowledgement of paternity (Vaterschaftsanerkennung) in the case of both parents wanting this. That means, the father is also acknowledged as the legal father of the child. There is also a certificate for that.

To be distinguished from the recognition as a father is the custody (Sorgerecht) of a child, this includes even more rights (e.g. to determine where the child lives, where they go to school, if they are treated by a doctor). But it also includes duties: You have to care for your child, i.e. take care of the child and provide financially for its living. In the case of unmarried parents, the mother automatically has custody from the moment of birth. However, the parents can declare joint custody (gemeinsames Sorgerecht). You have to do that at the Youth Welfare Office (Jugendamt). You can also get paternity acknowledgement at the Youth Welfare Office.

If you want to justify a permanent residence title (dauerhafter Aufenthaltstitel) with having a child here who is allowed to stay in Germany permanently, then you have to be recognized as the father, have custody (together with the mother) and actually take care of the child.