Home > UK Visitors > Giving Birth to a Child in the UK

Giving Birth to a Child in the UK

By: Louise Smith, barrister - Updated: 23 Jun 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Giving Birth To A Child In The Uk

Prior to 1 January 1983 almost any child born in the UK automatically acquired British citizenship. Since then the rules have changed. A child born today in the UK will only have British citizenship if at least one of their parents is a British citizen or was living in the UK with permission to stay here permanently.

Children Born to Citizens of the European Economic Area

Children born in the UK to citizens of the European Economic Area may be British citizens depending on when they were born. Children born:
  • From 1 January 1983 to 2 October 2000 will be British citizens if either parent was living in the UK at the time;
  • From 2 October 2000 to 29 April 2006 will only be British citizens if at least one parent had obtained indefinite leave to remain or the unconditional right to permanent residence in the UK prior to the birth;
  • On or after 30 April 2006 will be British citizens if at least one parent lived in the UK continuously for five years pursuant to their rights under European law prior to the birth.
Similar rules apply to children of Swiss citizens born in the UK from 1 June 2002 onwards.

Registering Children as Citizens

In some circumstances the parents of children under the age of 18 may be able to register their children as British citizens using form MN1. In some cases this will be an automatic right and in others it will be up to the discretion of the UK Border Agency. The following categories of children may be entitled to be registered as British citizens:
  • Children born to parents who subsequently acquire rights of permanent residence or British citizenship are entitled to be registered as British citizens;
  • Children who were born in the UK after 1 January 1983 and lived in the UK for the first 10 years of their life will be entitled to register as British citizens;
  • A child born prior to 1 July 2006 whose British father was not married to the child’s foreign national mother may be entitled to register as a British citizen.
  • Children born in the UK to parents who are neither British citizens nor permanent residents may be entitled to register as citizens if the parents can satisfy the authorities that there is a good reason why the child should be registered as a British citizen.

Children Born Abroad to British Citizens

The rules on whether a child born abroad to parents who are British citizens are complex. Whether such a child will be entitled to citizenship will depend on when the child was born and the type of citizenship that the parents have. In cases where the child’s parents acquired citizenship as a result of their own parents’ citizenship, rather than in their own right, they may not be able to pass their citizenship on to a child born outside of the UK.

Hospital Treatment in the UK

Full-time residents of the UK are entitled to free medical treatment from a General Practitioner (GP) or in a National Health Service (NHS) hospital. This would include pre- and neo-natal treatment. Visitors from the European Economic Area may be entitled to free treatment under European law. Some foreign nationals who are temporarily in the UK may be able to register with a GP and receive free treatment but it is usually up to the individual GP whether they agree to this.

Anyone in the UK is entitled to receive free emergency health care in the Accident and Emergency department of an NHS hospital. Family planning services are also available for free to anyone.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Hi, I have a Greek nationality and have been living here since October 2011. I gave birth to my son in February 2015 in the UK. Can I apply for his british passport now? If not, when can I apply? Thanks
BT81 - 23-Jun-17 @ 12:54 AM
@Chrissyw93 if your application for asylum has been refused after all appeal attempts then the best thing for you and your child may be to leave the country voluntarily. For other possible options you may want to contact an immigration solicitor.
TJ. - 22-Jun-17 @ 8:48 AM
Hi I recently had a baby I'm an asylum seeker the father has leave to remain but he has been out the country for months. My application has been denied and have exhausted my appeal. The child is registered in my name till the father comes bc and he's not sure when. I'm afraid they might want to deport me and my child. I'm out of options and don't know what I can do. How can I do any application without him ?
Chrissyw93 - 21-Jun-17 @ 10:15 AM
Hi, I have recently applied for a Biometric Card and my husband is an Italian National. I have had a baby and was wondering what I would require (a British passport or a biometric card) in order to able to travel with him. Thank you
Amna - 15-Jun-17 @ 9:25 AM
I'm Italian and my partner was born in Turkey but he has British nationality and passport. Do I need to provide my child's grandparents details or there is no need? Thank you
Vale - 11-Jun-17 @ 11:51 AM
@Shamy registering as a British citizen costs almost 1,000 sterling and applying for a British passport costs about 100 sterling. The costs could be higher if you apply through a lawyer.
TJ. - 6-Jun-17 @ 5:50 AM
I would like to know how much is it to register my daughter as she was born here and she's now 13 years old ,l was granted lndefinite leave to remain in 2007 as well as my daughter shewas 3years old and l need to apply for her British passport just want to know how much in total for registering her and thank you
Shamy - 5-Jun-17 @ 10:56 PM
@Bajwa your child will not be eligible for British citizenship unless one of the child's parents is a British citizen or settled in the UK.
TJ. - 1-Jun-17 @ 5:41 PM
Hi, I have Indian nationality but my son in borne in uk . After 2 years we came back to India, and my son when can apply for uk nationality he can or not , if he can or how many years after
Bajwa - 1-Jun-17 @ 3:56 PM
Gelyte - Your Question:
Hi my baby born in UK her father from Iran he have British travelling document im Lithuanian do my baby can apply for British passport?

Our Response:
Unless either parent is a British citizen or has ILR, then you would not be able to register your child as a British citizen. You can see MN1 guidance here to see whether you qualify.
AboutImmigration - 1-Jun-17 @ 1:39 PM
@Gelyte your child will only be a British citizen if you were a permanent resident in the UK or if the father had indefinite leave to remain in the UK at the time of the child's birth. The child cannot be entitled to British citizenship based on a travel document issued to a foreigner by the UK.
TJ. - 1-Jun-17 @ 6:08 AM
@Love your child will assume your nationality at the time of birth. You should apply for a South African passport at the embassy. You may need consent from the child's father to travel with the child.
TJ. - 1-Jun-17 @ 6:03 AM
Hi my baby born in UK her father from Iran he have British travelling document im Lithuanian do my baby can apply for Britishpassport?
Gelyte - 1-Jun-17 @ 12:31 AM
I am a South African living in the uk illegally, my son was born here 5 yrs ago and I understand he's not a birtish according to the law. Now I want to return to SA for good. What's my son's nationality and will he be allowed to entry since he using his fathers surname? Thank you
Love - 31-May-17 @ 8:36 PM
U.K. Portugal- Your Question:
HiI am a British citizen and have been here all my life. My partner is Portuguese, and a nurse who has been on the uk since 2012. We had a baby in 2017 who now has a British passport. We plan to marry in 2018. What is the situation regarding my partner obtaining a British passport and right to stay the U.K. At present she is employed by the NHS.

Our Response:
Please see article; Brexit Impact - EU Residents in the UK here and gov.uk link herewhich should tell you all you need to know.
AboutImmigration - 31-May-17 @ 10:42 AM
Hi I am a British citizen and have been here all my life. My partner is Portuguese, and a nurse who has been on the uk since 2012. We had a baby in 2017 who now has a British passport. We plan to marry in 2018. What is the situation regarding my partner obtaining a British passport and right to stay the U.K.At present she is employed by the NHS.
U.K. Portugal - 30-May-17 @ 12:15 PM
U.K.Portugal - Your Question:
HiI am a British citizen and have been here all my life. My partner is Portuguese, and a nurse who has been on the uk since 2012. We had a baby in 2017 who now has a British passport. We plan to marry in 2018. What is the situation regarding my partner obtaining a British passport and right to stay the U.K. At present she is employed by the NHS.

Our Response:
Please see article; here and here which should help answer your question.
AboutImmigration - 30-May-17 @ 11:54 AM
Hi, my partner and I are both from Cyprus (commonwealth citizens) and my partner was studying in the UK for more than 5 years, then had a break to find a job and worked for a year and half. I have been in the UK for the past 3.5 years. Will our child get a British citizenship?
NMIRACHI - 30-May-17 @ 10:12 AM
@U.K. Portugal your partner will be a permanent resident in the UK after 5 years of exercising EU treaty rights in the UK for example studying, employment or self employment. She will be eligible to apply to naturalize as a British citizen immediately after you get married if she is a permanent resident in the UK. Once she is naturalized she may apply for a British passport.
TJ. - 30-May-17 @ 6:49 AM
HiI am a British citizen and have been here all my life. My partner is Portuguese, and a nurse who has been on the uk since 2012. We had a baby in 2017 who now has a British passport. We plan to marry in 2018. What is the situation regarding my partner obtaining a British passport and right to stay the U.K. At present she is employed by the NHS.
U.K.Portugal - 29-May-17 @ 3:37 PM
@Aga your child can register as a British citizen once you complete your naturalization. It will cost you a similar amount that you paid to naturalize.
TJ. - 28-May-17 @ 11:01 AM
@Alonlisa if your Hungarian partner is not a permanent resident in the UK then the children will not be British citizens. They may be entitled to Hungarian citizenship which will allow them to live legally in the UK with their Hungarian parent. For you the best thing would be to leave the UK voluntarily without using public funds and apply to return the proper way.
TJ. - 28-May-17 @ 10:54 AM
Hi I passed my life in Uk , I have Esol Cambridge certificate Entry 3 (B1) . My daughter has been born in Uk in 2007 and she will be 10 years old. Can she became to a British citizen if I receive my British passport ? Do I need to do naturalisation for her and pay £923 ? Or I can pay £46 for her British passport Thank you for help .
Aga - 27-May-17 @ 8:05 PM
I am really in need of an advice.I have overstayed my visit for two years and I am now pregnantwith twins with a guy from Hungary.I am under immigrationcontrol and I have been asked to report with my babies birth certificate.please my questions are: will I be deportedwith my kids after my delivery and if not,is there anythingwe can do for us to remain?
Alonlisa - 27-May-17 @ 7:55 PM
Mario - Your Question:
Hi , I leave in England for the last 5 years and a half. But at the beginning utill I had my blue card I didn't work I was just leaving at my sister house. so now I have 4 years of working in Uk and paying taxes. My question is if I can apply for my baby born an british citizen?

Our Response:
You can only register your child as a British citizen if you or the other parent are registered as a British citizen.
AboutImmigration - 24-May-17 @ 10:30 AM
@Mario you may register your child as a British citizen once you obtain permanent residence in the UK.
TJ. - 24-May-17 @ 9:43 AM
@Abd if you have had your tier 2 visa for less than five years then your child would not be entitled to British citizenship whether or not born in the UK.
TJ. - 24-May-17 @ 8:05 AM
Abd - Your Question:
Hi. I'm on a tier 2 general visa and my wife is on tier 2 dependent visa. She is going to give birth to our first child in india. I wanted to know if we missing out on anything great by not giving birth in the UK. Appreciate your response

Our Response:
You may be able to apply for your child (under 18 years of age) to be registered as a British citizen, for example if you’re a British citizen but your child was born outside the UK - please see link here.
AboutImmigration - 23-May-17 @ 2:58 PM
Hi , I leave in England for the last 5 years and a half .. But at the beginning utill I had my blue card I didn't work I was just leaving at my sister house .. so now I have 4 years of working in Uk and paying taxes.. My question is if I can apply for my baby born an british citizen?
Mario - 23-May-17 @ 1:05 PM
Hi. I'm on a tier 2 general visa and my wife is on tier 2 dependent visa. She is going to give birth to our first child in india. I wanted to know if we missing out on anything great by not giving birth in the UK. Appreciate your response
Abd - 23-May-17 @ 12:32 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the AboutImmigration website. Please read our Disclaimer.