Registering a birth and acknowledging parentage of a child in Indonesia

If your child is born in Indonesia, you must register the birth in Indonesia. If you live in the Netherlands, you must also register the birth in the Netherlands. You cannot acknowledge parentage of a child in Indonesia, 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 Indonesia, you must register the birth with the local authorities within 30 days. This may be with the local register of births, deaths, and marriages (Catatan Sipil), or the municipality (Balai kota). When you register the birth, a birth certificate will be drawn up. If you wait more than 30 days to register the birth, you must go through the district court (Pengadilan Negeri). 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 Indonesian 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).

Attention: Before you can use an Indonesian birth certificate in the Netherlands you must first have it legalised. Find out how to have a birth certificate legalised.

Other important information

In Indonesia, no distinction is made between a person’s given name and surname. This is called a chain of names. Dutch law distinguishes between a person’s given names and surname. On Indonesian birth certificates the name is always listed as a chain of names, also if the child is a Dutch national. The whole chain of names will be listed in the surname field of the person’s Dutch passport. Three lines (---) will appear in the field for given names.

To have your given names and surname registered as such, you must submit a name registration request with the Integrity and Screening Agency (Dienst Justis), which is part of the Ministry of Justice and Security. A name registration request can be submitted at any age and is always free of charge.

Are the given names and surname not listed separately on the birth certificate? And do you want your child’s surname and given names stated separately on their travel document? Then you must first have their surname registered with Justis. There is no cost for this.

What you need when applying to have a name registered

  • A completed application form for changing/registering a surname. Under ‘type of request’ (type verzoek) at the top of the page tick the box for NV (naamsvaststelling).
  • An original, certified official copy of the long-form foreign birth certificate.
  • A statement of agreement from the parent whose surname the child will take.
  • A copy of both parents’ passports.
  • A copy of the child’s passport or identity document.

If the birth certificate is not in Dutch, English, French or German, you must have it translated and legalised.

Attention: From 1 January 2024, your child can have both your surname and your partner's surname. Even if your child is born abroad. Would you like to give your child a combined surname and is this not possible in your country of residence? Then go to a municipality in the Netherlands to record the choice of name. You can also authorise someone to do this for you. Read more on the page Which surname can I choose for my child? on (information in Dutch).

Acknowledging parentage of a child

You cannot acknowledge parentage of a child in Indonesia.

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.

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 Indonesia. 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. Find out more about acknowledging parentage in the Netherlands on

Attention: If you want to arrange something for your child, you may need their birth certificate or a declaration of acknowledgement of parentage.

More information

Find out more about becoming a parent outside the Netherlands


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.