Since the 1st of January 1995 all stillborn babies in Ireland must be registered. You can register a stillbirth even if the baby was born prior to that date.
The Civil Registration Act of 2004 (which came into effect on 5th December 2005) states that a stillbirth is one in which the child weighs at least 500 grammes or has a gestational age of not less than 24 weeks and who shows no sign of life at birth.
In order to register the stillbirth a Birth Notification Form (BNF/01) will usually be completed by the hospital staff with the parents. In the case of a homebirth a midwife or doctor will do this. The form outlines the information to be recorded in the Register of Stillbirths and will be completed with the parents to ensure that the information to be registered is accurate. This form will be forwarded to a registration office to inform the Registrar that a stillbirth has occurred. In order for the registration to be completed the parent(s) or other qualified informant must attend the Registrar’s office in person to sign the Stillbirths Register.
What Documentation is required?
In order for the stillbirth to be registered the medical practitioner who attended the stillbirth, or examined the baby must give you a certificate stating the baby’s weight and gestational age and the name and address of where the stillbirth took place.
If the stillbirth took place prior to 1st January 1995 specific evidence must be produced to prove that a stillbirth took place. This evidence can take the form of an authorative statement in writing from the hospital, nursing home or midwife, again stating the date and place the stillbirth occurred as well as the weight or gestational age of the baby.
What details will be recorded in the Register of Stillbirths?
- The time, date and place of birth of the baby
- The baby’s gender
- The baby’s weight and gestational age
- The PPSN of the baby (this will be allocated at registration)
- The baby’s forenames and surname
- The forename and surname of the mother
- The mother’s surname at birth
- The mother’s mother’s surname at birth
- Any previously used surnames of the mother
- The mother’s occupation
- The mother’s address at date of birth
- The mother’s date of birth
- The mothers marital status
- The mother’s PPSN
- The forename and surname of the father
- The father’s surname at birth
- The father’s mother’s surname at birth
- Any previously used surnames of the father
- The father’s occupation
- The father’s address at date of birth
- The father’s date of birth
- The father’s marital status
- The father’s PPSN
Where can the stillbirth be registered?
The stillbirth may be registered in the Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths. You must bring all the evidence with you. Details of these can be found at www.groireland.ie.
Once the registration is complete a certificate of stillbirth may be obtained from the Registrar. If you need to get a certificate subsequently it can be obtained from:
General Register Office,