Search using both parents surnames
Sometimes the child’s parents will have different surnames. If you cannot find a birth using the father’s
surname try searching with the mother’s surname in the Family Name field.
Why are there so many births where the child is unnamed?
There was a requirement to register a birth within 42 days. Often a child was not named until they were baptised.
Once baptised the name could be recorded as long as it was provided to the Registrar within 7 days of the baptism.
What constitutes a ‘stillbirth’?
Currently for a stillbirth to be registered the foetus must weigh 400 grams or more, or the gestation period must be 20 weeks or more.
Why do I get recent deaths in my search results?
If the deceased person's date of birth was at least 80 years ago this record will be available as soon as the death is registered. The records available are updated nightly as the embargo period is reached.
How can I get beyond the Proceed to Payment on the Order confirmation page of the website?
The problem may be due to the browser you are using, e.g. If you are using IE10 try the following:
- Press F12
- Select IE10 Compatibility mode from the toolbar this is displayed
- Press F12 to make the toolbar disappear
This will put IE10 into a mode that is backward compatible. This means it will work with websites that were written for earlier versions of Internet Explorer.
Why is the printout I ordered typed?
Printouts of records will be typed for any of the following reasons:
- It contains information that, due to historic legislation, we are not able to release
- The image was of poor quality and would not scan
- Information on the record has been amended since the scanning process occurred
- The event occurred after 1 January 1998
Whether a typed printout or handwritten image of the record is issued depends on the record – it is not an option.
How old do records need to be before they can be made available online?
The Births, Deaths, Marriages and Relationships Registration Amendment Act 1995 allows the Register-General to make historical information available. Historical records are defined as:
- Births that occurred at least 100 years ago
- Stillbirths that occurred at least 50 years ago
- Marriages that occurred at least 80 years ago
- Deaths that occurred at least 50 years ago or the deceased's date of birth was at least 80 years ago.
The records available are added to daily.
Why do you recommend searching on a range of dates?
The 500 record limited can easily be reached for common surnames e.g. Smith or Jones.
By limiting your searching to a range of years or including a given name you are more likely to achieve a successful result.
If registrations didn’t commence until 1848 why do search results have earlier records?
Official registrations started in 1848 for births and deaths and 1854 for marriages.
However as BDM have earlier records, such as church and place registers some dating back to 1840, these records have been included as well.
Some early registrations have the same registration year, e.g marriages from 1840 – 1854 may show with a registration year of 1840.
Why do I get other names back on the searches I asked for?
The search results include, where recorded, current surnames, changes of surnames and birth surnames for an individual.
Also it is possible that some of our data isn’t as accurate as you expect, as we have always accepted registration information as it has been provided to us.
Can I sort my search results?
Yes, click on the heading you would like to sort and the searches will be resorted into alphabetical order or into ascending order for the registration number.
How do I get to another page of my search results?
If more than 1 page of search results is returned you can click on the page numbers shown at the top or bottom of the page to go directly to that page.
The page you are on is indicated by the absence of a line under the number e.g. 2 not 2
You can click on Prev to go back one page or Next to go forward one page.
Can I print the search results
Yes, you can either print the page that is displayed on your screen by clicking on Printer Friendly page (current) or you can print all your search results by clicking on Printer Friendly page (all). The date you printed the results will be shown at the bottom left of your list.
Why do you recommend I order a printout rather than a certificate?
There will always be more information on a printout than we can include on a certificate. So, unless you need a certificate for legal purposes, you will have more information to assist you with further research if you order a printout. The information collected prior to 1875 is very minimal.
Can you email me the record I want?
Yes, if you provide your email address in your delivery details we will email your printouts to you, instead of sending them by mail. The processing time remains the same. Certificates will continue to be sent by mail.
How can I order the products I want if I don’t have a credit card?
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You can use the website to find the record you want and then post your application to us. The minimum information to provide (with payment) by post, is the type of product you want, the person’s name and the year and the place of event or the registration number you have identified from your searching.
for more information