Birth certificate

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Freightdog
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Birth certificate

Post by Freightdog »

The latest in the long parade of tasks is resolving passport requirements for Freightdog Jr. the starting point is his birth certificate.

He shall at some stage have a UK passport, but that is no easy thing, and not helped by my company reneging on agreements, so I’m faced with being able to get here only irregularly.

The little fella was born at Khema clinic, and a Birth certificate was issued. Is this a real birth certificate, or simply a hospital certificate that then needs to be processed through sangkat channels? I think I already know half the answer, but the full answer may help others, too.
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fax
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by fax »

Freightdog wrote: Wed Sep 25, 2019 10:11 am Is this a real birth certificate, or simply a hospital certificate that then needs to be processed through sangkat channels?
Correct, it's the "or". Bring it to the sangkat in the first month iirc.
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Freightdog
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by Freightdog »

fax wrote: Wed Sep 25, 2019 10:13 am
Freightdog wrote: Wed Sep 25, 2019 10:11 am Is this a real birth certificate, or simply a hospital certificate that then needs to be processed through sangkat channels?
Correct, it's the "or". Bring it to the sangkat in the first month iirc.
Oh, dear. That fills me with foreboding. When i was going through the process for a driving licence, they issued me a letter to register a vehicle.
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by Bubble T »

I'm also English and my son was also born at Khema clinic in January this year so here's an overview of what was involved in terms of paperwork from when he was born until we received his UK passport:

- You get a hospital issued birth certificate from Khema. You also get a vaccination booklet thingy. They will openly tell you that their vaccinations are overpriced and that you can get followups done at a government hospital much cheaper for the same thing. If you do that, it's important that the government hospital issues you a new vaccination booklet (the yellow one) with your child's name spelled exactly as it is on the birth certificate, otherwise you may have to go and get it redone during the passport application process.

- You and your wife (doesn't matter if you're legally married despite what anyone tells you) take the hospital issued birth certificate along with your passport and your wife's ID docs to your local sangkat to get the government issued birth certificate, and they make some excuse about why they can't do it for free as legally required. They may tell you that they'll do it but without listing you as the father "because you're a foreigner", don't let that happen as it will make the passport much harder. We ended up going to her hometown (Takeo) and getting it done at her village sangkat for $100. Officially it's free unless you wait until after the kid is 3 months old, in which case there's a 6000 riel fee, but in reality this just doesn't happen for kids with a foreign parent. My son was 4 months old by the time we got his government birth certificate, that wasn't an issue.

- Passport application is done via VFS. Again I feel it's really important to point out (due to misinformation I regularly see being spread) it makes no difference if you are legally married. You'll have to provide a copy of your birth certificate, your son's birth certificates (the hospital issued one and the government one), all medical records from the pregnancy and birth, photos of you, the mother and the kid together (they don't want or accept photos of you and the mother prior to the birth, they want photos of all three of you), your parents birth certificate, your wife's passport, her ID, her birth certificate (just the government one is fine), a cover letter, passport photos of the kid and a counter signatory. If you can't provide all of the requested docs, explain why in the cover letter, they are humans and will get in touch. The lady who called me (my wife didn't have a passport to include) was cool and said "you can't provide what you don't have" and talked me through everything. The relevant forms can be found online, I can dig them up for you if you're having trouble finding them. You fill them in, make an appointment with VFS, and hand in the form and all the aforementioned documentation. You also need to make sure all Khmer docs are translated by an approved translation company, and that the company stamps the translations.

- When the UK passport office have processed your application and are satisfied with the docs, you will be called back to VFS to do a quick video interview with someone in England from the passport office. This interview is purely to make sure that you are you. They don't ask personal questions about your relationship with the child's mother, they don't ask you to bring proof of anything, they just ask you about your past (where you lived as a child, where you went to school etc) to make sure it matches their records. They also asked a bit about the kid to make sure the info I gave matched the medical records we sent. At the end of the interview they will tell you that they are approving the passport and that you'll get it within a couple of weeks (when it arrives you go back to VFS to collect it).

If you get stuck, DM me and I'll try to help with more specific info for whichever stage you get stuck at. Do not get frustrated and give up. It is time consuming, frustrating, unpleasant, and generally a shitty process, but it's worth it for your child's future.
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GMJS-CEO
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by GMJS-CEO »

Cunts at sangkat wouldn’t issue the birth certificate because I’m a foreigner and we weren’t married. Obviously makes no sense at all, the kids born and should have a birth certificate. They play it up for a bribe I assume, we just went to a different sangkat where my wife knew someone that worked inside.
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by canucklhead »

Never paid more than 40$ for one from the Sangkats. I just send mum with the ids and certificate issued by the hospital. The last time they asked for the "khmer" name. No khmer name thank you.
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by Bubble T »

GMJS-CEO wrote: Wed Sep 25, 2019 10:52 am Cunts at sangkat wouldn’t issue the birth certificate because I’m a foreigner and we weren’t married. Obviously makes no sense at all, the kids born and should have a birth certificate. They play it up for a bribe I assume, we just went to a different sangkat where my wife knew someone that worked inside.
Yep, in this case it's a disadvantage of being British, as our embassy here is incompetent and indifferent to the suffering of newborn Brits abroad. To elaborate a little:

Kids with foreign parents are (anecdotally) pretty much always initially refused a birth certificate. There is no legal reason for this, it's pure extortion. For Americans when this happens they can make a note of the phone number of the office denying their legal right to a birth certificate, they give the phone number to their embassy, the embassy calls the office, asks why the birth certificate is being denied, and it magically gets approved and created the following day. Conversely if you're British the embassy will just tell you that they have no jurisdiction and therefore won't even try to help you. Of course not having jurisdiction doesn't mean they can't help, but as far as they are concerned it's enough for it to no longer be their problem, so they just don't care. Pointing out that your newborn infant is being subjected to racist discrimination and illegal extortion (and is therefore the victim of a crime) also doesn't help.

We tried a bunch of solutions but in the end it was the village chief out in the province who was able to get it done at the cheapest price we were offered ($100). Prices and results seem to vary drastically.
canucklhead wrote: Wed Sep 25, 2019 11:00 am I just send mum with the ids and certificate issued by the hospital
You need to be there to sign and thumb print the documents (not just the certificate but also the book thingy they keep their records in).
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GMJS-CEO
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by GMJS-CEO »

That’s right bubble T, the embassy offered to call for me. My wife had suggested sorting it at the other sangkat so didn’t bother. It was out of town so the wife went and took care of it without me.
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Kammekor
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by Kammekor »

GMJS-CEO wrote: Wed Sep 25, 2019 11:24 am That’s right bubble T, the embassy offered to call for me. My wife had suggested sorting it at the other sangkat so didn’t bother. It was out of town so the wife went and took care of it without me.
Seven years ago my Sangkat refused a bc, so I asked the clerk at my wife’s villages to issue one. Since I knew him all was fine. Was quite a trip though, and had to make the trip twice because he forgot to write down the name in Latin script as well. Check for it, and check for correct spelling.
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PSD-Kiwi
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Re: Birth certificate

Post by PSD-Kiwi »

Some good advice in previous posts, let me just add a couple of points;

1. You have 30 days to register the birth and apply for official Cambodian birth certificate for free.
But, as with most Sangkat administrative tasks they will try and milk the applicant for extra tea money, especially when a foreigner is involved.

2. There is ZERO requirement for the couple to be married in order for the birth cert to be issued with both parents names included on it...this is a legal right. If the Sangkat refuse its either because they are trying to milk more money out of the applicants, or they just don't have a fucking clue. Try presenting them with a copy of the Prakas on Marriage & Family and the Sub-Decree on Civil Status (Khmer version) with the relevant sections highlighted. If that fails, then cntact the Department of Identification, they have successfully helped dozens of Cambodian/foreign couples that I have advised to succesfully obtain their childrens birth certs.

3. Once you receive the birth cert, have it professionally translated, if there are any errors then take it back to the Sangkat to have corrected. As most of you are aware, errors on official documents can create problems with future Sangkat or other official administration tasks, ie. applying for passport.
Rinse and repeat as many times as necessary.
Last edited by PSD-Kiwi on Wed Sep 25, 2019 2:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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