But I will go ahead and summarize in this blog post on how to get a birth certificate in Vietnam.
First though, I would like to clarify some things on the nationality of a child born in Vietnam from foreign parents or Vietnamese-foreign parents.
Technically, only those born from Vietnamese parents are considered Vietnamese. However, if the foreign parents fail to agree on the nationality of their child, the child is then Vietnamese. Reference is from Resolution No. 51/2001/QH10.
Article 16. The nationality of children either of whose parents is a Vietnamese citizen
1. A child born inside or outside the Vietnamese territory either of whose parents is a Vietnamese citizen and the other is a stateless person at the time of his/her birth or whose mother, at the time of his/her birth, is a Vietnamese citizen and whose father is unknown, has Vietnamese nationality.
2. A child either of whose parents is a Vietnamese citizen at the time of his/her birth and the other is a foreign national has the Vietnamese nationality if so agreed in writing by his/her parents at the time of birth registration. In case a child is born in the Vietnamese territory but his/her parents fail to reach an agreement on the selection of his/her nationality, the child has Vietnamese nationality.
Article 17. The nationality of children whose parents are stateless persons
1. A child born in the Vietnamese territory whose parents, at the time of his/her birth, are both stateless persons with a permanent residence in Vietnam has Vietnamese nationality.
2. A child born in the Vietnamese territory whose mother, at the time of his/her birth, is a stateless person with a permanent residence in Vietnam and whose father is unknown, has Vietnamese nationality.
So let’s go back to the topic, how to get a birth certificate?
Step 1: Prepare all necessary documents.
1. Certificate of Live Birth issued by the hospital
2. Authenticated Marriage Certificate of the parents
3. Original and photocopy of the Father’s passport
4. Original and photocopy of the Mother’s passport
5. Affidavit of the Child’s nationality (authenticated in your own embassy/consul)
6. Original and photocopy of the Landlord’s Police Registration Book
7. Child Birth Registration Form from the MoJ
8.Affidavit that the Person in the Father’s Passport is the same as the Person in the Marriage Certificate (authenticated in your own embassy/consul)
9. Affidavit that the Person in the Mother’s Passport is the same as the Person in the Marriage Certificate (authenticated in your own embassy/consul)
10. Affidavit of the Child’s Nationality from the Vietnamese government (People’s Committee)
Step 2: Have all English documents translated to Vietnamese and notarized.
Here, you have to the People’s Committee (47 Le Duan St., D1 | Open: M-F /Sat (half day)). For translation and notarization at the People’s Committee, you’d have to pay roughly 100,000 VND each document. If you’re just going to have it notarized, it’s much, much cheaper. Transaction time is 3 days.
Step 3: Have all translated and notarized documents authenticated.
Here, you go to the Department of Foreign Affairs (6 Alexandre de Rhodes St., D1 | Open: M-F / Sat (half day)). Upon entering the premises, get your ticket number by the guard house and go directly to the small office at your right behind the guard house. Transaction fee is at 30,000 VND per document. Transaction time is 1 day.
Step 4: Apply for birth certificate.
Pass all Vietnamese authenticated documents to the Ministry of Justice (141 & 143 Pasteur St., D3 | Open: M-F). Once you enter the MoJ, you have to have your documents checked for completion at the small office at the right before going up the main building. If all documents are in order, you will be asked to go to the main building to pass your documents. The windows in the MoJ are labeled in English so I don’t think you’ll have a difficult time. Transaction time is 4 days. If you failed to submit the documents 60 days after giving birth, you’d have to pay a fine.
Step 5: Get the birth certificate, apply for English translation, and authentication.
You shall receive the Birth Certificate in Vietnamese which you can have translated into English in the MoJ. I opted to have ours translated in the People’s Committee and notarized. Again, we had to go to the Department of Foreign Affairs for authentication of the document and had it re-authenticated in our own embassy/consul.
Voila! Birth certificate ready for passport application!
Approximate days of transaction is around 20 working days. Be prepared to spend a month on this.