Birth registration and birth certificates: report

Terms of reference

The Victorian Law Reform Commission will consider and review aspects of the Births, Deaths and Marriages Act 1996 (Vic). The purpose of this review is to:

• examine the processes for birth registration and obtaining a birth certificate to consider whether they are efficient, effective and accessible to all members of the community, particularly culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) and Indigenous communities, and the disadvantaged and vulnerable.

• identify practical solutions to problems that may exist in Victorian law and practice with regard to birth registration and obtaining a birth certificate.

In undertaking this review, the Commission will have particular regard to:

• whether the need to apply separately for a birth certificate (in addition to registering a birth) creates a barrier to obtaining a birth certificate, and if so, what can be done to remove or minimise this barrier.

• whether specific criteria should apply to section 49[1] of the Act (which provides for the remission of fees), and if so, what these criteria should be and whether they should be contained in legislation, regulations or a publicly available policy document.

The Commission will consider legislative developments in Australian and international jurisdictions.

The Commission aims to report by 1 June 2013.

May 2012


  1. The original terms of reference stated section 46(1) which should read section 49.