Augmenting a Child’s Birth Certificate in New Jersey
In the state of New Jersey, adding a biological father’s name to a child’s birth certificate is a fairly simple, albeit somewhat confusing process. Schedule a Consult with a Family Lawyer Today
There are many different situations a mother may find herself within when she decides to augment her child’s birth certificate with this information – she could be married or single, and be within a variety of scenarios regarding her marital status. For each of these scenarios, there is a process of form submission required to legally change her child’s birth certificate. Read on to learn more about how to engage in this important procedure.
What is the basic process for augmenting a child’s birth certificate with the biological father’s name?
In order to change a child’s birth certificate, a mother must go to the New Jersey Department of Health’s Office of Vital Statistics, located in Trenton. Alternatively, she can go to the Office of the Registrar located in the New Jersey county in which the child was born.
There, a mother must submit appropriate documentation, proof that the man is the biological father of the child, and pay a fee.
What is the appropriate documentation necessary to add a biological father to a child’s birth certificate?
Part of the documentation required for all cases is a Certificate of Parentage. A Certificate of Parentage must be signed by both the biological mother and the biological father. The only way to change a child’s birth certificate is to have this form signed by both parents.
In addition to the Certificate of Parentage, additional documentation may be required. There are many scenarios that affect the documentation required in order to change a child’s birth certificate. They depend on the mother’s marital status and other partner information as it relates to the child:
Mother was married to man who is not the biological father at the time of birth, and she knows his whereabouts
If the mother is or was married to a man who is not the biological father of the child in question, this man must complete and sign an Affidavit of Denial of Paternity. This legally prevents him from claiming paternity in some future.
Mother was married to man who is not the biological father at the time of birth, and she does not know his whereabouts
If the mother is or was married to a man who is not the biological father of the child in question, but she no longer has a relationship with him and does not know his whereabouts, the mother must approach the Superior Court: Family Part to obtain a court order of paternity that states that her husband is not the biological father of the child. Only with a signed Affidavit of Denial of Paternity or a Court Order will a mother be able to add the biological father’s name to the child’s birth certificate.
Mother was not married at the time of the child’s birth, but later married a man who is not the biological father
If the mother has since married, she will need to submit a copy of the marriage certificate with the other paperwork to show that the marriage occurred after the conception of the child, and as such, the current partner is not required to deny paternity in an official affidavit.
Mother was not married to the biological father at the time of birth, but she now is married to him
If a mother has since married the man who was not listed on the birth certificate as the biological father, she must submit a copy of their marriage certificate as well as a completed REG 35 form with the other required documentation.
Mother is not and was not married, and wants to change the child’s surname to the biological father’s surname
In order to legally change the child’s surname to that of their biological father, a mother must submit a completed REG 60 form in addition to the required documentation.
In addition to the above mentioned required documentation for change to a child’s birth certificate as it regards the biological father, a check for $25 must be submitted, made out to “Treasurer, State of New Jersey.”
Submit all appropriate documentation and the check to the birth county’s Office of the Registrar, or mail the documents to
P.O. Box 370
In addition to covering the fees for amending the birth certificate, the mother will receive one certified copy of the child’s updated birth certificate. In order to obtain additional copies, a $2 fee must be paid.
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At The Law Offices of Jacobs Berger, our attorneys are experienced in guiding our clients in Florham Park, Tewksbury, Randolph, Morristown, and across Morris County NJ.