Parents and custody
Registration of the identity of a child’s parents is based on factors such as birth notifications, marital status of the mother, voluntary declarations of paternity, court rulings on paternity, adoption statements and foreign birth certificates.
All children are linked to the personal identification number of their mother on the basis of information in the birth notification or birth certificate. According to the Children’s Act, a mother is under obligation to make the paternity of her child known. According to the provisions of the Children’s Act, Registers Iceland notifies the district commissioner of children over the age of 6 months whose paternity has not been established.
The mother of a child is listed in the National Registry as married or in registered cohabitation.
The child’s mother is registered according to the information in the birth notification.
When the mother of a child is listed in the National Registry as married to or in registered cohabitation with the declared father of her child, he will be listed as the child’s father in accordance with the provisions of the Children’s Act. If the father is not the mother’s spouse, the paternity of the child must be disputed before the courts before another man can be listed as the child’s father.
Two mothers who are married or in registered cohabitation.
A document must be submitted, confirming that the conception was in accordance with the provisions of Act No. 55/1996 on Artificial Fertilisation, etc. It is worth noting that Registers Iceland requests the above information in order to comply with the provisions of the Children’s Act No. 76/2003 on the registration of a child’s parents.
If a woman who is listed as married or in registered cohabitation has a child that is not conceived with artificial insemination in accordance with Act No. 55/1996 on Artificial Fertilisation, etc., e.g. with artificial insemination abroad, the Act’s general provisions on paternity apply.
Parents who are not married or in registered cohabitation.
The paternity of a child is established by
- Voluntary declaration of paternity by submitting Form A-154 to Registers Iceland.
- Voluntary declaration of paternity at the office of a district commissioner, who in turn sends a confirmation of paternity to Registers Iceland.
- Marriage or registered cohabitation. If a mother and a man that she has identified as a child’s father enter into a marriage or registered cohabitation, the paternity of the child will be registered automatically. There will also be joint custody of the child; see custody of a child.
The paternity of a child born to a single mother and conceived by way of artificial insemination according to Act No. 55/1996 on Artificial Fertilisation, etc. will not be registered pursuant to the Children’s Act. In such instances, the child’s mother must submit a confirmation of artificial insemination within 6 months from the child’s birth. If a confirmation is not received within the set time limit, Registers Iceland will notify the district commissioner of a child without a stated father, in accordance with the provisions of the Children’s Act.
The District Commissioner of Reykjavik sends Registers Iceland issued adoption permits to be registered. Registers Iceland records information on the child’s parents on the basis of the adoption permit. Information on those previously stated as the child’s parents are also recorded on the basis of source date, i.e. birth notifications. In the case of children born abroad, adoptive parents must also register the child in the National Registry; see further details in registration of children born abroad.
Registers Iceland records the custody of children on the basis of the marital status of their parents at the time of birth and changes in custodial status according to documentation received for registration according to law, e.g. documentation on the divorce or separation of the parents, agreement between the parents on the custody of their child, court rulings and foreign documentation.
Registers Iceland issues certificates on the custody of children. Beginning in early 2017, information on the custody of children will be published in My pages at Ísland.is.
If the mother is married or in registered cohabitation with the declared father, she and her spouse will be listed at birth as having joint custody. Otherwise, she will be the child’s sole custodian until documentation confirming a change of custody is submitted.
Changes in a child’s custody
- There will be automatic joint custody of a child if his/her listed parents enter into a marriage or registered cohabitation subsequent to his/her birth.
- There will not be joint custody on the basis of a voluntary declaration of paternity or the fact that the parents have the same legal domicile.
- District commissioners and judges notify Registers Iceland of a child’s custodians according to an agreement or court ruling.
- Custody on the basis of foreign documentation
Joint custody of parents who are not married or in registered cohabitation
In instances of joint custody, the law stipulates that the child’s domiciliary parent must be identified. The identity of the child’s domiciliary parent is decided when a decision on the child’s custody is reached at a district commissioner’s office or in a court.
Parents with joint custody who do not live together and wish to move the legal domicile of the child from one parent to another must have the agreement confirmed by the district commissioner. The district commissioner then sends the confirmed agreement to be registered by Registers Iceland.
Each adult individual has their own family registration code in the National Registry, except if that person is married or in registered cohabitation, in which case the persons in question have a joint family registration code, which is the personal ID No. of the older individual. Children are linked to the family registration code of the adult person with whom they live, i.e. the adult individual with whom a child has a legal domicile. In the case of two adult persons who are married or in registered cohabitation, the child will have their joint family registration code. When a person reaches the age of 18, all their links to the previous family registration code are cancelled and that person’s ID No. becomes their family registration code.
The family registration code was never intended to provide information on a child’s parents or custodians. More information on family registration codes.