If your child is born in Ghana, you must register the birth in Ghana. If you live in the Netherlands, you must also register the birth in the Netherlands. You cannot acknowledge parentage of a child in Ghana, but you can in the Netherlands.
Registering a birth
You must always register the birth of your child in the country where they were born. How you register a birth varies by country. If you live in the Netherlands and your child was born abroad, you must also register the birth in the Netherlands.
If your child is born in Ghana, you must register the birth with the Ghanaian Births and Deaths Registry. When you register the birth, a birth certificate will be drawn up. It is not possible to register the birth of your child at the Dutch embassy.
If you live outside the Netherlands, you can have the Ghanaian birth certificate converted into a Dutch birth certificate at the municipality of The Hague’s Foreign Documents Department. This is not mandatory, but it can be useful if you ever need an extract from the birth certificate in the future. Having the document converted does not take care of your child’s registration in the Non residents Records Database (RNI).
If you live in the Netherlands, you must also register the birth with the municipality where you live, using the foreign birth certificate. Do this as soon as possible once you return to the Netherlands. The municipality will then process your and your child’s details in the Personal Records Database (BRP).
Acknowledging parentage of a child
You can acknowledge parentage of your child if you are not automatically the legal parent. By doing so you declare that you are the child’s parent.
Acknowledgement of parentage as such does not exist in Ghana. Instead, a father is considered to have acknowledged parentage of his child if he is named on the child’s birth certificate as the child’s father and as the informant. To qualify as an informant, the father must be able to show that he was in Ghana at the time the child’s birth was registered. Under Ghanaian customary law, the father is then considered to have acknowledged parentage of his child. The Netherlands recognises this form of acknowledgement.
If you live in the Netherlands or if you are Dutch and live abroad, you can always acknowledge parentage in the Netherlands of your child born in Ghana. You can do this at the municipality or a notary. You can also authorise someone to do this in the Netherlands on your behalf. To do this, you must get a notary to draw up a power of attorney. You cannot acknowledge parentage of your child at a Dutch embassy or consulate-general.
Acknowledging parentage does not automatically grant you parental responsibility for your child. Acknowledgement of parentage in the Netherlands is not legally valid in Ghana. Find out more about acknowledging parentage in the Netherlands on Government.nl.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.