Civil records of birth marriage and death
The primary purpose of civil registration is to create a legal document that can be used to establish and protect the rights of individuals.
A secondary purpose is to create a data source for the compilation of vital statistics. The United Nations General Assembly in adopted the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women , Article 16 of which requires countries to establish compulsory civil registration of marriages.
Most countries have a legal requirement for relevant authority to be notified of certain life events, such as births, marriages and deaths. The first country to establish a nationwide population register was France in , using the registers of the Catholic Church. Sweden followed in , on the basis of a register drawn up by the Church of Sweden on behalf of the Swedish king. The United Nations defines civil registration as "the continuous, permanent, compulsory and universal recording of the occurrence and characteristics of vital events pertaining to the population as provided through decree or regulation in accordance with the legal requirements of a country.
Civil registration is carried out primarily for the purpose of establishing the legal documents required by law. These records are also a main source of vital statistics. Complete coverage, accuracy and timeliness of civil registration are essential to ensure the quality of vital statistics. Vital events that are typically recorded on the register include live birth , death , foetal death , name , change of name , marriage , divorce , annulment of marriage , judicial separation of marriage , adoption , legitimization and recognition.
A family register is a type of civil register which is more concerned with events within the family unit and is common in Continental European and Asian countries, such as Germany Familienbuch , France, Spain, China Hukou , Japan Koseki , and North and South Korea Hoju.
Additionally, in some countries, immigration , emigration , and any change of residence may require notification. A register of residents is a type of civil register primarily concerned with the current residence. Civil registration is faced with many challenges, both on the demand side and supply side, especially in low income countries. The demand-side challenges include a lack of awareness of the need and importance of registration of vital events, and the situation is not helped by the many existing barriers to registration.
Birth, Marriage & Death
The registration systems in many cases are very difficult, causing potential barriers to accessing the registration. Furthermore, in certain societies, due to stigmatisation based on cultural and religious settings, single mothers may fear questions of paternity during notification through chief or community agents. On the supply side, challenges often involve different, and often conflicting, legal frameworks various stakeholders health institution, civil registry, statistics agency , and as a result, many countries with "burdensome procedures and non-standardized systems across a country, leading to confusion regarding what individuals need to do or present.
There have been new developments in civil registration across the globe over the years. With the advent of enhanced and information and communication technology, civil registration has been moving from a paper-intensive, manual-based civil registration to more automated and digitalised systems.
Some of the innovations implemented in civil registration include the use of e-birth notification systems, whereby the health officials are able to notify the national population registration system with new births. Another innovation, such as that implemented by iCivil Africa in Burkina Faso , is the use of a mobile application to register newborns.
In Namibia , Civil registration mandate lies with the government through the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration, which has offices in all fourteen region of the country. Although some vital events e. Over the years, Namibia has transformed its civil registration processes, moving away from the manual system to electronic system.
In , Namibia, which has at least 22 birth and registration offices based within the maternity wards of hospitals across the country, launched its e-birth notification system. The system is also a welcome departure from the present mechanism of relying on surveys for estimations of birth registration rates and projections of the numbers of births each year.
Any Home Affairs office can record a vital event or issue a certified copy of a vital record. This "new tech start up has set themselves a massive task: to register all newborn babies digitally". France was the first country to create a national Registration. The ordinance orderer the creation of at least a register of baptisms , as a proof of one's date of birth, and a register of burials of churchmen, as a proof of one's date of death. Though both registers were kept by religious authorities, they were authenticated by a public notary, always a layman, and were kept in the local royal administration's archives.
In fact, as the church kept parish registers since the Middle Ages the oldest one in France is Giry 's, of , these registers were used to meet the ordinance's dispositions. The national registration was fully laicized in during the French Revolution by order of the French Republic. These records have been continued through the present and are kept at the departmental archives.
The Civil Registration includes birth, marriage, divorce, and death records. In the Netherlands , maintaining the civil registry "basisregistratie personen" is the duty of the municipalities. Before the French Rule , the Netherlands did not have a central registration of its population, which was introduced in some parts of the country in by the French.
In , this registration was introduced throughout the country. The Dutch differentiate between the basisregistratie personen , an ongoing database of citizens' information, and the burgerlijke stand , which is a collection at the municipal level of documents evidencing certain events taking place in a given municipality, such as birth, marriage, civil union , and death.
Beginning on 1 January , municipalities were obliged to keep citizen's records in book form Dutch: bevolkingsregister. Early in the twentieth century this system was replaced by a card system that registered families. The move toward individual registration took place in with the introduction of the persoonskaart , a single card registering a single individual, kept in the municipality. Information gathered on this card included family name, first names, gender, position within the family, date and place of birth, marital status, address, and church affiliation, besides information on when a person entered and left a municipality.
In , the Dutch government did not want to mandate citizen's identification, but during World War II the German occupying government mandated it so they could assess who was to be sent to Germany as forced labor and to select Jewish citizens from the general population. When the war was over, mandatory identification was done away with.
In the s all local registries were automated, and starting on 1 October the individual registration card was replaced with a digital list containing a person's information as collected by the gemeentelijke basisadministratie van persoonsgegevens in replaced with the 'basisregistratie personen' , kept and maintained at the municipal level. Municipalities exchange information through a closed network at the end of each day to a nationwide database, which can be consulted by officials online.
Though it was generally considered "un-Dutch," on 1 January mandatory identification when asked by a mandated person was reintroduced for everyone over 14; official identification is to be presented for all important transactions between citizens and government.
The civil registry in Portugal is officially established by the "Civil Registry Code" of February 18, a few months before the promulgation of the Portuguese Constitution of  and is officially called Institute of Registries and Notaries Portuguese : Instituto dos Registos e Notariado.
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On April 20, , the "Law of Separation of the Church of the State" radicalized the secular state and determined that all parish registers baptisms, marriages, and deaths prior to should be civilly effective and transferred from parishes to newly established Civil Registry Offices.
This was a previous struggle that had come since the formation of the Civil Registry Association in , a Masonic organization presented by its mentors as "a strong anti-clerical and antireligious stronghold" . In general, there is a civil registry office Portuguese : Instituto dos Registos e Notariado in each Portuguese province , and in the cities of Lisbon , Porto , Vila Nova de Gaia and Setubal there are eleven, four, two and two conservatories respectively.
In Lisbon, the Central Registry Office is located, which is responsible for registrations involving Portuguese citizens abroad and for the management of any procedure that concerns Portuguese citizenship. Civil registries were introduced in during the Russian occupation, and they followed the Tsarist model of keeping them with church records.
These records are available only for relatives of a died person. Acts of civil status replaced Metricheskiye knigi Parish registers in All registers before are open for everyone.
Civil Records: Northern Ireland
The system is decentralized. Each Russian federal subject has its own regional body as a part of regional government. The system of resident registration in Russia and former propiska maintained by centralized federal body is not related to this system.
In Sweden, the civil registry is maintained by the Swedish Tax Agency Skatteverket ; up into the s the Church of Sweden was responsible. Recording of births and deaths was stipulated in the early 17th century, formal national censuses have been made since the midth century, and Sweden has one of the longest and most comprehensive suites of civil records of any country. In addition to the national indexes, many local registration services are currently indexing their birth, marriage and death registers and making the indexes available online.
Here are the links to indexes covering County Durham:. All certificate requests and enquiries are processed by the Bishop Auckland Register Office. Site Search. Birth, marriage and death records This page contains information about birth, marriage and death records for County Durham and links to online indexes. About civil registration Civil registration, that is the registration of births, marriages and deaths, was introduced in England and Wales on 1 July