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Take to the appointment

  • Both parents come to the appointment together. If the mother is unable to come, you may also give permission for acknowledging in writing for a 2nd or subsequent child.
  • Are you both coming to the town hall as parents? Then you both have to identify yourself.
  • Does the father/duo mother come to the town hall alone? Then, in addition to the Written Consent Recognition document, you must also bring the mother’s proof of identity.

Conditions for acknowledging paternity

  • Is the mother not registered in the Netherlands? In that case, she has to prove that she is not married. This can be done with a single status declaration.
  • You must be at least 16 years old to acknowledge a child.

Bear the following in mind

  • If you acknowledge the child, you become the legal father. This gives you all the rights and obligations that come with fatherhood.
  • Acknowledgment gives the child inheritance rights.
  • You acknowledge each child separately. That means you must also acknowledge a 2nd or 3rd child from the same relationship.
  • The choice of surname does not have to be passed on again in the case of a subsequent child from the same relationship.

At what time to acknowledge a child

Acknowledge before birth

You will find more information on the page Acknowledging a child before birth.

Acknowledging when registering the birth

Apply for acknowledgment at the time you register the child’s birth. You apply for acknowledgment at the Town Hall.

Acknowledgment after the birth

  • You and the mother go to the Town Hall to acknowledge the child.
  • You acknowledge the child at the registrar’s office.
  • Is the child over the age of 12? If so, you need the written consent of both the mother and the child.
  • Is the child over the age of 16? If so, the child must also come along to the appointment to give consent. The mother does not need to be there.

Acknowledging a foreign child

This may affect the child’s nationality. This depends on the child’s age. Contact the City of Leeuwarden about this.

Choosing a surname for the child

  • Have you not made any arrangements? In that case, the child will take the mother’s surname.
  • Do you want the 1stchild to have the surname of the co-mother or a double surname? You arrange this together at the Town Hall. The second child and subsequent children are automatically given the same surname as the first child.
  • You will find more information on the page Choosing your child’s name.


Acknowledging the child after birth is free of charge.