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Registration certificates

These are birth certificates, marriage certificates, death certificates, acknowledgement of parentage for a child and certain judgements that relate to or modify a person's status.

The information below is intended for Belgians whether they live in Belgium or abroad.

Foreigners living in Belgium must apply directly to the relevant administration in Belgium or abroad. This also applies to foreigners who live abroad and for whom a civil status certificate has been drawn up by a Belgian municipality or on whom a judgement has been pronounced by a Belgian court. They must apply directly to the relevant municipality or court or request the intervention of their diplomatic or consular representation in Belgium. Under no circumstances does the FPS Foreign Affairs intervene for people who are not Belgian nationals.

Belgians who have dual nationality: The FPS Foreign Affairs does not intervene for Belgians who still are still nationals of the country where the certificate was drawn up.

For a thorough understanding of this information:

  • An extract of a civil status certificate is a summarised version of the content of this certificate containing just the key elements.
  • literal copy, also called a complete copy or certified copy or full copy, gives the entire contents of this certificate. The certified copy of a certificate/judgement often takes the form of a true certified photocopy of this certificate.
  • Legalisation: the attestation of the validity of the signature on a document.
  • Apostille: is a form of legalisation as described in the Hague Convention of 05/10/1961; The apostille is affixed by the competent authority of the country where the document was drawn up (for Belgian documents, this is the Legalisations Service of the FPS Foreign Affairs in Brussels). Belgian consulates do not therefore affix apostilles on either Belgian or foreign documents.
  • C.C. : Civil Code.