Report Birth Abroad
As U.S. citizen parent(s), you should report your child's birth abroad as soon as possible to the U.S. Consulate to establish an official record of the child's claim to U.S. citizenship at birth. A Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) is official evidence of U.S. citizenship issued to a child under age 18 who was born abroad to United States citizen parent(s) and acquired citizenship at birth. Because a child's unabridged foreign birth certificate is insufficient to prove U.S. citizenship, the Consular Report of Birth Abroad is primary evidence to show how and when a child acquires U.S. citizenship. The CRBA, which will function as a U.S. birth certificate, can be used for school registration, passport and identity document applications, citizenship benefits, etc. An original of this document will be given to you at the time registration is approved.
To receive this document, the child’s parent(s) will need to complete an "Application for Consular Report of Birth Abroad", form DS-2029 (PDF 52K) Application for Consular Report of Birth Abroad must be made before the child's 18th birthday. We encourage parents to document their child's citizenship as soon as possible after the birth. Delay in doing so could cause inconvenience and possibly deprive your child of this valuable document.
I Have Adopted a Child in South Africa. Should I Apply for a CRBA?
A child's derivative claim to U.S. citizenship depends on the existence of a legal and blood relationship between the child and U.S. citizen parent(s). Therefore, adopted children do not acquire citizenship automatically upon adoption. However, adopted children, or some children born abroad to U.S. citizen parent who were found to have no derivative claim to citizenship, may be eligible for citizenship through naturalization under the Child Citizenship Act of 2000.
How Do I Register My Child’s Birth?
To register the birth of a U.S. child in South Africa, please call American Citizen Services at the Consulate in the consular district of South Africa in which your child was born. Both parents of the child whose birth is being registered must appear in person with the child at the Consulate. You will need the following documents to report the birth:
- Completed application form: form DS-2029.
- Original South African Unabridged Birth Certificate bearing the child’s full name
- Both parents' passports and U.S. Certificate(s) of Naturalization (if applicable)
- Original or certified copies of all final Civil Divorce Decree(s) or Death certificate of spouse (if applicable).
- If only one parent is an American citizen, evidence of the U.S. citizen parent’s physical presence in the United States for five years, two of which are over age 14. This evidence may include, but is not limited to, elementary, middle, high school, college, university and/or graduate school transcripts, military or other government service records, employment verification letters, etc.
- If the child was born in wedlock or both parents are now married, please provide an official marriage certificate. For couples married in South Africa, an unabridged marriage certificate is required. Abridged marriage certificates will not be accepted.
- Additional documentation if required by the Consular Officer.
The Department of State is pleased to announce the introduction of a redesigned Consular Report Birth Abroad (Form FS-240). The redesigned CRBA, which is an official record confirming that a child born abroad to a U.S. citizen parent or parents who aquired U.S. citizenship at birth and serves as proof of citizenship, has been updated with a variety of state-of-the art security features to help prevent fraud and identity theft.
Beginning January 18, 2011, overseas posts will still document the citizenship of children born overseas to U.S.-citizen parents, but the CRBAs will be printed at our passport agencies in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and New Orleans, Louisiana using the information provided by overseas posts. By centralizing production and eliminating the distribution of controlled blank stock throughout the world, we will help ensure uniform quality and lessen the possiblity of fraud. Additionally, the Department will no longer issue the DS-1350 Certification of Report of Birth Abroad. Instead, the Department will simply provide new FS-240s in response to requests for additional, replacement, or amended CRBAs.