Still birth registration was introduced on 1 July 1927 to help
protect infant life, provide a valuable source of statistical
information and to give parents the opportunity to have their child
A still born child is a child born after the 24th week of
pregnancy who did not breathe or show any other signs of life.
When a child is still born the midwife or doctor will issue a
medical certificate of still birth which will be used to register
the still birth.
Where and when must I register a birth?
All still births should normally be registered within 42 days
and must be registered within 3 months with a Registrar in the
area where the still birth occurred.
Please note: Still births that
occured at Darent Valley Hospital may now be registered either by
The Kent Registration Service or Bexley Register Office. For an
appointment at Bexley Register Office please call 0300 333
If you live outside of Kent but the still birth occurred in
Kent, you can make the registration at any other Registrars' Office
in England and Wales, by making a declaration.
In this case the birth certificate and form for the funeral
director will not be issued immediately but sent to you by post,
normally within 1 week.
Please note that the Medway Towns (Chatham, Gillingham,
Rochester, Strood) are not part of Kent and have their own separate
registration service, please check with Medway Council.
To make an appointment to register a still birth in Kent or
Bexley please call 0300 333 5430. Appointments are available at any
suitable location including the home address of the parent or
Who can register a birth?
Either parent of the baby can register provided they were
married to each other at the time of the still birth.
If they were not married, only the mother of the baby can
register. If the father's details are to be recorded both parents
usually need to be present.
If the parents are unable to attend there are other people who
can register the still birth and our staff will be pleased to
explain the options.
Information for the register and birth certificate
In addition to the medical certificate issued by the midwife or
doctor, you will need to provide the following information:
- The place and date of birth of the baby.
- If the parents wish to name the baby, the name and
- The sex of the baby.
- The names, surnames, places of birth and occupations of the
- The mother's maiden name (if applicable).
What happens when I talk to the Registrar?
The Registrar will see you in private and record the baby and
You will be asked to check the information recorded very
carefully and to signify that it is correct.
It is important that the information recorded is accurate, as
the correction of errors discovered after the register has been
signed may cause delay and inconvenience.
What will I be given?
A certificate of registration - this provides proof that the
still birth has been registered.
The certificate includes any names that were given to the child,
the date of the still birth and the registration district in which
the still birth occurred.
A still birth certificate - this is an exact copy of the entry
in the register.
Certificate for burial or cremation - this is the certificate
you need to pass to the funeral director arranging the funeral.
Do I have to pay a fee?
No. The service is free of charge. Fees are payable for
Support for bereaved parents whose child was stillborn is
available from the following organisations:
SANDS - Still birth and
Neonatal Death Society
28 Portland Place
London W1B 1LY
Cot Death Society
4 West Mills Yard
Berkshire RG14 5LP
Telephone: 0845 601 0234
Great Ormond Street for Children Hospital
London WC1N 2AP
Telephone: 0800 282 986